I am spending the day today at the American Library Association (ALA) annual conference in Washington, D.C. This is a huge, six-day show with many vendors that are well-known in genealogy circles. ProQuest is one of those vendors, known for its HeritageQuest Online product and several other huge databases of historical interest.
Today, ProQuest is announcing a major partnership with the American Antiquarian Society (AAS) to place a large collection of the Society's materials online. Here is today's announcement. Please note that the method of accessing the information will be through your local library:
ProQuest and American Antiquarian Society Announce Partnership to Make Society's Collections Accessible to Libraries Everywhere
Initial Phase of Partnership Provides First-Ever Online and Microfilm Access to Society's Family History Book Collection
ANN ARBOR, Mich. - June 23, 2007 - At the American Library Association annual conference, ProQuest and the American Antiquarian Society (AAS) announced a multi-year agreement that will make key AAS collections available to libraries everywhere. The first phase of the partnership will put family history books from the Society's renowned collections online and on microfilm for the first time. America's ever-growing number of genealogists will access the resources through a variety of ProQuest's popular genealogy collections, including HeritageQuest® Online
"ProQuest and the American Antiquarian Society have a shared goal of unlocking this vast resource and making it more accessible," said Rod Gauvin, senior vice president of ProQuest. "This initiative will preserve and protect a vital source of content, and make it more readily available to patrons, historians, and genealogists at libraries everywhere. We are honored to partner with one of the world's premier research institutions, and look forward to growing this relationship for years to come."
Available exclusively from ProQuest, the first series of content from the American Antiquarian Society will help researchers uncover new and additional information about their families. Located in Worcester, Massachusetts, the American Antiquarian Society's mission is to collect, preserve, and make available the printed record of what is now the United States from 1640 through 1876. Their exceptional collection of genealogical material focusing on early North American lines of descent, including French-Canadian genealogies, has long been highly regarded not only by genealogists, but also by scholars working on biographical, historical, and literary topics.
"For nearly 200 years, the American Antiquarian Society has been committed to advancing the study of U.S. history at every level," said AAS president Ellen S. Dunlap. "We're very excited to partner with ProQuest in bringing these valuable resources online and further preserving the historic record of America before the twentieth century."
ProQuest will provide access to the material through HeritageQuest Online, a unique and continuously expanding collection of genealogical materials that trace family lineage and local American history since the late 1700s. It combines digital, searchable images of U.S. Federal Census records with the UMI® Genealogy & Local History books collection, the Periodicals Source Index, and other valuable content.
Microfilm will be available in ProQuest's UMI® Genealogy and Local History collection. This collection assembles and preserves genealogies, local histories, primary source materials, and genealogical and local history serials. When complete, Genealogy and Local History will encompass materials related to all 50 states and Canada as well as Great Britain, Ireland and many other countries of immigration to North America, making it an unprecedented resource and a major preservation project.
The American Antiquarian Society titles are one of the most recent additions to ProQuest's growing family of genealogy resources. ProQuest's products provide the information researchers need to track their personal history - from vital records and primary sources to directories and finding aids such as dictionaries, bibliographies and gazetteers. In addition to HeritageQuest Online and Genealogy and Local History in microform, other ProQuest genealogy resources include: ProQuest® Obituaries, Ancestry® Library Edition, ProQuest Historical Newspapers™, Digital Sanborn® Maps, Canada's Heritage from 1844™, and UMI® HeritageQuest™ in microform.