Adventures in Digital History

Omeka

Before I get too far into this blog post, I would like to state that I have heard of Omeka before taking this class. How could I not have? I’ve been using my Domain for almost three years and every time you log into the dashboard you see it listed beside WordPress. There are several others listed as well, but I tend not to pay them any mind because I am unfamiliar with them. After two years of wrestling with my WordPress site to get it looking how you see it now, I have no plans to mess up all the hard work I’ve put into it. However, I am happy that this class may give me the opportunity to explore Omeka, especially for more in-depth digital history projects!

I looked into quite a few of the Omeka sites Dr. McClurken provided for us, and I was surprised that I have seen a few of these before. I have seen the Baltimore Uprising project while in Intro to Public History. The site is put together really well. I had to listen to quite a few of the oral histories. Including oral histories in a database dedicated to the uprising is amazing, because oral histories are not something people generally look for. I really enjoy this site as a piece of digital history, because it shows how these projects can be used to narrate events. Another site I was familiar with was Making Modern America. I stumbled across this site when I was a freshman, because I was writing a paper on the New Deal at the time. I did not use it as a source, but I do remember looking around and being amazed at how well put together it was. At the time I did not realize the significance, as I was not aware digital history was a thing back then.

Outside of the ones I had previously encountered, I really liked History of the National Mall. There’s something about how simple it is that appeals to me. It does not appear to be a very complex site, yet it includes so many different features to create the finished project. I especially liked the use of the map and the different categories that expand with so much information. The overall site design is simple and colorful, and I think it is an all around good example of a digital history project. Well, it should be considering it was made by the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media.

Overall, I think these project are very interesting. I would love to create something of this magnitude, however I know we only have so much time over the course of the semester.

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