This week the British Library announced an amazing new project, Europeana Sounds, which is bound to become one of the more interesting resources available through this wonderful project.
In searching for primary sources, Europeana is one of the most important new online tools to aid researchers. As a consortium of libraries and museums throughout Europe, the archive provides thousands of texts, images, and video freely available to the public.
While the project has already achieved some important milestones with its vast image, texts, and manuscript collections, it has begun to improve its audio libraries by publishing millions more files to the archive. Some of the files will be hard-to-find original recordings from the early days of recording. Other files will be rare audio coverage of events or other spectacles. In addition to providing the audio, in some cases, the project will upload music performances and will use new software technology to link the audio with the actual music scores.
Because the audio comes from the museums and libraries throughout Europe, the archive will also be representative of European history. Many of the materials will come from partners in Western Europe, such as the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Denmark. But other Eastern European countries have also joined the project. Countries, such as Lithuania, Latvia, and Greece, will then provide additional material that would traditionally be hard to locate, or only available in person at those museums and libraries. This resource is then going to be invaluable for researching and learning about European History, from a wide, inclusive perspective.
As you continue to collect objects and find primary sources for the European History museum, you might consider exploring this growing audio database.