Thanks to this grant, we will be able to present these important images of our community to new generations of library users. The library, along with our local historical society, serves as a repository of collective memories.Gregg Williamson, Library Director
James Ostler, postman and amateur photographer, chronicled Clinton County life with his camera from the time he was hired by The Farmers Bank in 1951 until his death in 1975. After he took them, the pictures could be seen in a slideshow at the bank. The collection encompasses everything from school events, club meetings, and school games to political affairs, businesses, and organizations. Many Clinton County residents still remember Ostler’s taking photographs at community events. Ostler took approximately 20,000 slides for the bank.
In the 1980s, these slides along with those taken by other individuals were donated to the library by The Farmers Bank. In 2013 the library started digitizing the collection focusing primarily on those slides taken in the 1950s because they were beginning to fade and deteriorate. In 2014 FCPL had its first of five exhibits asking residents to identify the individuals in the slides that had been digitized. The library began uploading the digital images along with the information gleaned from the public and staff research to Indiana Memory in 2015. Now these images are accessible to researchers from all over the world, and thanks to this grant there will be more to come in the near future.
This project is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered by the Indiana State Library. The IMLS is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 35,000 museums. Its mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement.
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