On March 16, the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) announced the debut of an on-line system that allows searches through dozens of historic collections, from small local museums to collections of the Smithsonian, National Parks, and U.S. Navy. A prototype is now available at www.NationalPortal.org.
The new website is being developed by American Heritage Publishing in partnership with AASLH in order to give museums greater visibility and provide a low-cost way to move collection items to the Internet.
“AASLH is working with American Heritage Publishing because we share a common vision to increase the accessibility of America’s historic collections,” Terry Davis, President & CEO of AASLH. “The National Portal is a tremendous milestone in this effort to digitize these collections and make them available online.”
Every institution in the National Portal has its own personalized main page that allows users to search the individual museum’s collection. In addition, a national search page allows searches across multiple collections.
American Heritage Publishing produces American Heritage magazine which was originally founded by AASLH and is touted by many as the oldest and finest magazine of American history. The magazine’s 13,000-article archive has being integrated into the site, along with its database of 3,000 historic institutions, many of whom are members of AASLH.
The site will launch later this month at www.AmericanHeritage.com. History organizations are invited to add their collections to the National Portal at a nominal cost. New collections join the National Portal every week.