UConn Library’s Connecticut Digital Archive Receives Connecticut Humanities Partnership Grant to Build Local Histories

'My Town, My Story' will help CT public libraries build digital collections of local history and memory

A photo from 1947 showing four men standing in front of a sapling tree, a "grandson" of the fabled Charter Oak.

The planting of a "grandson" of the Charter Oak in 1947 is an example of the kind of photograph or other historical artifact that can be collected digitally under the My Town, My Story program (Photo by Jerauld A. Manter / Department of Archives & Special Collections/UConn Library)

Connecticut Humanities (CTH) has awarded a Partnership Grant of $173,711 to the Connecticut Digital Archive (CTDA) for an exciting new project called My Town, My Story. My Town, My Story is focused specifically on helping Connecticut public libraries build digital collections of local histories and encourage individuals and community groups to contribute to the common memory of their town.

The grant allows the UConn Library to build and market an easy-to-use program to collect local history from communities across Connecticut that can be set up in any public area of a library or similar organization.

Connecticut Digital Archive Logo.

“By creating a pre-packaged and ready to use program, we are excited to get the incredibly rich information from people who have not traditionally contributed to building a digital cultural heritage collection,” says Greg Colati, Director of the UConn Library Digital Preservation Repository Program. The wider net cast to collect from community members will broaden the resources being preserved and made available to the people of Connecticut.

“The focus on building and preserving Connecticut’s collective history is an important initiative of the UConn Library,” says Anne Langley, Dean of the UConn Library. “Our work through the Connecticut Digital Archive is one way we share UConn’s commitment to build and strengthen partnerships across Connecticut and beyond.”

Partnership Grants through Connecticut Humanities build capacity for both the recipient and the CTH in areas currently not served by CT Humanities and which have a strategic statewide, regional, or national impact in the humanities for the public.

“As a lifelong Connecticut resident, I am constantly struck by the rich community histories and traditions we have across our state. These are sources of pride, reflection, and inspiration,” says Jason Mancini, executive director at CT Humanities. “CTH is proud to partner with the CTDA on this program as we look to better connect with communities across Connecticut to learn about and share the stories and experiences that have shaped our state.”


Funding for this project is provided through a CT Cultural Fund Partnership Grant, administered by CT Humanities, with funding provided by the Connecticut State Department of Economic and Community Development/Connecticut Office of the Arts (COA) from the Connecticut State Legislature.  

The Connecticut Digital Archive (CTDA), a program of the UConn Library, is a statewide membership organization that provides digital preservation and access services to organizations, communities, and individuals who share a common commitment to digital preservation. Visit the CTDA at: https://ctdigitalarchive.org.

Connecticut Humanities (CTH) is an independent, non-profit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. CTH connects people to the humanities through grants, partnerships, and collaborative programs. CTH projects, administration, and program development are supported by state and federal matching funds, community foundations, and gifts from private sources. Learn more by visiting https://cthumanities.org