February 22, 2013

184 Year Old Indian Library Offers Some of its Rarest Documents in Digital Form


One of the oldest libraries located in India is succumbing to technology and offering some of its rarest documents in a digital form. The Kerala State Central Library located in Trivandrum, the state capital of the southern Indian state Kerala, is getting hundreds of its rare documents digitized.

The Library was established during the age of Swathi Thirunal Maharaja of Travancore province way back in 1829. The library is equipped with many rare documents that have been undergoing the digitizing process since 2006.

“During the first phase 707 rare documents (644 English and 63 Malayalam books) containing 328,268 pages have been digitized and a Digital archive was opened in 2006,” the library said in a post on its website.

The rare documents underwent the second phase of digitizing in 2010 where 480 English books were added to the Digital Archive.

The library itself is nearly 200 years old and displays documents even older than that. The book An Account of the Trade in India written by Kockyer Charles has been digitized. The book was published over 300 years ago, in 1711, and due to being digitized, it can be accessed from anywhere in the world.

Charles’ book isn’t even the oldest document to undergo the transformation. Not by a long shot. That distinction goes to “Righte Noble and Pleasant History of Successors of Alexander Surnamed the Great,” which was published in 1569.

By holding some of the rarest documents in the country, having its documents undergo the digitizing process is a great way to continue to share the works of past great authors and continue to pass down the stories and lessons from previous generations.




Edited by Rich Steeves



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