Kings College: Archive of the Month
Archive Centre, King’s College, Cambridge
Tracy Wilkinson, Assistant Archvisit
November 2009 - current
Title of project/website:
Archive of the Month
Short description of project:
Archive of the Month (AOM) is a monthly online exhibition using original sources in a unique and unconventional manner. Each month items related to a certain theme (from one collection or multiple collections) are selected for their beauty, and/or interest value.
Objectives of project:
I developed Archive of the Month (AOM) to use manuscripts and archival collections in a new and fresh manner. I wanted to extend the scope of our current website by engaging new users and by encouraging current users to look at the archive in a new way.
- Photo imaging software
- Content management system – or Flickr perhaps.
- variety is key to its popularity
- anyone can do this - it need not be monthly
- can do with a single image
- just need to think outside of the box
- Decide on a theme
- Select items from collection(s) which fit the theme and are interesting or attractive REMEMBER the content of the document is not always what’s important.
- Scan the items and ready them for the web using photo imaging software
- Write some text about the theme/document – try to keep this light you’re not writing an academic essay
- Upload images and text to the web
- Get the word out: I do this by emailing individuals and posting the page on the College’s Facebook page
- Provide links to other pages related to your theme
- Promotion of the archive and collections internally & externally.
- Justification of the archive and its continued existence. AOM has erected a groundswell of support and interest amongst those who influence the allocation of funds and budgets within the college
- In the first 6 months, page popularity has increased significantly
- 50% increase in people 'liking' Development’s Facebook page
- These people will now have our updates appear on their news feeds.
- Active use of our page increases dramatically when AOM is published -
- A35% increase in post views and an 11% increase in new 'likes'.
- Front page story on King’s homepage - increases external visitors
- Although the archive centre has hundreds of pages - the 17 pages of AOM are almost neck and neck in numbers of hits
Some of the outcomes:
Web presence within College:
- It is important to get the word out. When I discovered that not enough people were viewing the Archive page, I approached the College’s Development Office to put a link from their Facebook page to AOM – and the page took off!
AOM has a life of its own now – I couldn’t stop doing if it if I wanted too. People email if it’s late!!
- RSS feeds
- We may create a Flickr page so that more people find AOM on the Internet