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LSU begins digitizing century-old editions of longtime campus newspaper

6 years 1 month 1 day ago Saturday, June 23 2018 Jun 23, 2018 June 23, 2018 10:20 PM June 23, 2018 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - One of LSU's longest-standing traditions is set to step into the digital age.

Louisiana's flagship university is looking to bring millions of words written over the past 121 years, long after the ink has dried, into the 21st century.

The Daily Reveille's Editor in Chief, Evan Saacks, spoke with WBRZ about the huge archive project that's just begun.

"Right now we're really the only ones that have access to it, us and the library," Saacks said. "So the fact that everyone can access this history, that's really important."

A new effort from the LSU Libraries and Manship School of Mass Communication hopes to get every edition of The Daily Reveille online. Some date all the way back to 1897.

"The Reveille is a great record of the history of the institution," Dean of Libraries, Stanley Wilder, said. "The newspapers are printed on acidic paper which means they're disintegrating, and so something has to be done to preserve them."

From the first volume, to Billy Cannon's storied run, to present day editions, this is sure to be a trip in time for many.

Martin Johnson is the Dean of the Manship School for Mass Communication. He says the project entails more than just scanning countless pages. 

"The Reveille really does provide that first draft of history," Johnson said. "Going back generations, we get snapshots of what campus life was like. Having that available easily, digitally, internationally, anytime day or night is going to have so much impact."

Now with pages yellowed and frayed, over a century of Tiger tales will soon be just a click away.

The fundraising goal is $100,000. Wilder says they have already completed about 25% of the digitization, thanks to a lead gift from a donor.

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