The National Library of Australia today (Friday 21 June) celebrates the digitisation of the 10 millionth newspaper page – the Saturday July 31, 1915, issue of the Orange Leader.
This represents a milestone for the National Library initiative, the Australian Newspaper Digitisation Program, which was launched in 2008 as a project to provide free access to text-searchable digitised Australian newspapers. The first papers became available online the following year with subsequent access via the National Library’s award-winning Trove website.
Newspapers are selected for digitisation by the National Library, with the support of and in association with state and territory libraries – with suggestions from the public always welcome.
Historical societies, genealogy groups interested organisations and individuals, are also invited to sponsor a newspaper title for digitisation – like the current Canberra Times Digitisation Project.
Director-General of the National Library, Ms Anne-Marie Schwirtlich, congratulated the ANDP team on reaching the milestone, saying more than 500 digitised Australian newspapers were now available via Trove.
‘Newspapers are the eyes and ears of a community,’ Ms Schwirtlich said. ‘By digitising these early newspapers, we are treated to a remarkable first-hand resource – from births, deaths and marriages to the political and social happenings of the day.’
Ms Schwirtlich said she was delighted that a regional newspaper, such as the Orange Leader in central-west NSW, took out the honour.
‘This emphasises the wonderful working relationship between libraries,’ she said. ‘Digitisation of the Leader has been sponsored by Central West Libraries which has also sponsored other regional titles including the Canowindra Star and Eugowra News, Cowra Free Press, Forbes Advocate, Molong Argus and Molong Express.’
Media Liaison Manager Sally Hopman
T 02 6262 1704