Author Archives: Vernon Horn

John Hope Franklin, Scholar and Mirror to America, Dead at the Age of 94

John Hope Franklin, 1915-2009John Hope Franklin, the eminent historian of African American history, civil rights activist, and teacher died yesterday of congestive heart failure at the Duke University Hospital in Durham, NC. He was 94.

Born in 1915 he grew up in Tulsa, Oklahoma and witnessed the tumultuous race riots of 1921 and saw his father’s legal offices burned down. Although barred from admission to the University of Oklahoma, he studied at Fisk as an undergraduate, and Harvard for graduate studies and received his PhD in 1941.

Old Stuff, New Tricks: How Archivists Are Making Special Collections Even More Special Using Web 2.0 Technologies

Yesterday Jessica* Lacher-Feldman, a University of Alabama archivist, chaired a session of the American Association for History and Computing that included archivists Jean L. Root Green of Binghamton University and Amy C. Schindler of the College of William and Mary, as well as archivist and applications developer Mark Matienzo of the New York Public Library.

The four led a wide-ranging discussion of the myriad ways that archivists are using web 2.0 technologies. Blogs, of course, have been in use for some time, and are the most common and well established way to promote collections to the public.

AHA Member Access to the History Compass Extended to October 31

The AHA is pleased to announce that free access to the History Compass will continue until October 31, 2008. After that, members who wish to continue using the History Compass will be asked to pay a nominal fee. Access to the journal is via the AHA member services section. The journal features more than 100 new articles per year. It is dedicated to publishing "peer-reviewed survey articles of the most important research and current thinking from across the entire discipline." To gain free access to the History Compass, please login to member services and click on the link to History Compass.

Department of Defense Minerva Research Initiative Grants

The U.S. Department of Defense has announced the Minerva Research Initiative (MRI). Minerva is a university-based social science research program initiated by the Secretary of Defense. It focuses on areas of strategic importance to U.S. national security policy. It seeks to increase the department’s intellectual capital in the social sciences and humanities and improve its ability to address future challenges and build bridges between the department and the social science community. Minerva will bring together universities, research institutions, and individual scholars and support multidisciplinary and cross-institutional projects addressing specific topic areas determined by the department.

Archives Wiki Needs You!

AHA Archives WikiAs you begin to prepare for your summer research projects, we hope you’ll visit the AHA’s recently launched ArchivesWiki. Since its public release in January 2008 the wiki has grown by several pages and users every day. However, to be a world-class resource, we’d like to see it grow by several thousand more pages and users.  In planning your research trips this summer you will no doubt do a good deal of research just about the archival institutions you plan to visit.

AHR Online at its New Home at University of Chicago Press

The American Historical ReviewThe American Historical Review has now completed its transition to the University of Chicago Press web site. Recent issues started appearing on the site in the beginning of November, and now a number of advanced features have been added, making the new AHR fully available. Over the next few weeks, additional content will be added to the site, filling in the gap between the current issue and the last issue available through JSTOR.

As in the past, the basic text of AHR articles will be free to the public to enhance discoverability of new history scholarship.

reCAPTCHA: Digitizing Books and Saving the World from Form Spam

reCAPTCHAIf you’ve ever filled out a form on the web, you’ve probably had to retype those distorted letters to prove that you are in fact a human being and not a program written to send spam. This process, known as "CAPTCHA" (an acronym for "Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart"), was first introduced by in 2000 and is now used 60 million times per day.