The State Library of Illinois
- Category: Depository Library Spotlight
- Published: March 01 2013
As the regional library for the state of Illinois, the State Library of Illinois in Springfield not only preserves access to Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) materials for the people of Illinois, but also actively digitizes and preserves government information by contributing to the Illinois Digital Archives.
Preserving Access to Tangible Materials
Regional librarian Blaine Redemer provides the 49 selective depository libraries in Illinois with several tools to ensure that access to tangible FDLP materials is preserved. The Illinois State Library maintains a Web site for FDLP member libraries that includes detailed instructions for collection development activities and a directory of Illinois depositories. Additionally, Mr. Redemer chairs a statewide Government Depository Council that ensures that their State Plan is updated and that their recent State Focused Action Plan (related to the FDLP Forecast Study) is available to coordinators, directors, and the public.
Through the development of collection policies and maintaining communication among the Illinois depository library community, the regional library is helping to ensure that access to depository materials is preserved. As a regional depository, the library is committed to monitoring the tangible depository collections in the state to ensure that researchers in Illinois continue to have access to as many tangible documents as possible.
Posters of World War II
The Illinois State Library preserves some documents electronically. The Posters of World War II collection is described on the Illinois Digital Archives Web site as:
A collection of World War II posters distributed through the Federal Depository Library Program, 1940-1945. These posters, intended for public display, were aimed at mobilizing Americans to boost production and support for the war effort. The subject matter of these posters includes conservation and rationing, war savings bonds, war production, national security, public health and nutrition, recruitment, price regulation, nursing, and civil defense.
The collection is made up of posters from the depository collection and was originally digitized in 2001 to mark the 60th anniversary of the war. More dramatic posters such as "He is Watching You" were the first to be digitized, followed by others on subjects ranging from "Careless Talk" to enlisting to fighting on the homefront by canning foods or growing a "Victory Garden." The collection contains both American and British posters, with the majority coming from the Illinois State Library's Federal depository collection.
More recently, access to these items has been expanded to the visually impaired by the addition of audio descriptions of each poster.
Documents of World War II
In addition to posters, the Illinois Digital Archives also contains state and Federal documents relating to the war. The documents of the World War II collection (according to the Web site) contain:
United States and Illinois government documents on subjects relating to World War II, including: rationing and conservation, women's work, civil defense, the Japanese interment, the development of the United Nations, and more.
There are many Federal Government documents included, and the information found in the non-depository documents is relevant to the FDLP community.
Each collection that is digitized meets GPO's established criteria for digital preservation, ensuring that all users have and will continue to have permanent access to these valuable posters and documents for many years to come. Federal Government documents will continue to be included in digital preservation efforts.
GPO thanks the State Library of Illinois in Springfield for not only the outstanding collection of historic and current materials it maintains and provides access to, but for leading the libraries of Illinois in superb service to the public.