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Alaska: State Resource Guide

Digital Collections

The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of primary source materials related to Alaska, including books, government documents, manuscripts, maps, motion pictures, photographs, sheet music, and sound recordings. Provided below is a link to the home page for each relevant digital collection along with selected highlights.

Written materials in the Library's digital collections include books, government documents, manuscripts, and sheet music. Examples of written materials related to Alaska are provided for most of the collections listed below.

African American Perspectives: Materials Selected from the Rare Book Collection

The collection presents a panoramic and eclectic review of African-American history and culture, spanning almost one hundred years from the early nineteenth through the early twentieth centuries.

Selected highlight of this collection:

The Evolution of the Conservation Movement, 1850-1920

The collection documents the historical formation and cultural foundations of the movement to conserve and protect America's natural heritage, through books, pamphlets, government documents, manuscripts, prints, photographs, and motion picture footage drawn from the collections of the Library of Congress.

Selected highlight of this collection:

Music for the Nation: American Sheet Music, ca. 1870 to 1885

This collection consists of over 47,000 pieces of sheet music registered for copyright during the years 1870 to 1885. Included are popular songs, piano music, sacred and secular choral music, solo instrumental music, method books and instructional materials, and music for band and orchestra.

A selection of highlights from this collection includes:

Printed Ephemera: Three Centuries of Broadsides and Other Printed Ephemera

The collection contains, among other materials, posters, playbills, songsheets, notices, invitations, proclamations, petitions, timetables, leaflets, propaganda, manifestos, ballots, tickets, menus, and business cards. There are more than 28,000 items in the collection with 10,172 available online. The material dates from the seventeenth century to the present day and covers innumerable topics. The collection contains more than forty items pertaining to Alaska.

A selection of highlights from this collection includes:

The visual material collections at the Library of Congress contains thousands of images documenting the history of Alaska. Selected images of Alaska are provided for each collection listed below. Search on terms such as Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau, Denali National Park and etc. to locate additional images.

Detroit Publishing Company

This collection of photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company Collection includes more than 25,000 glass negatives and transparencies as well as about 300 color photolithograph prints, including more than 50 photographs from Alaska.

Selected highlight of this collection:

Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Black-and-White Negatives

The images in the Farm Security Administration-Office of War Information Collection are among the most famous documentary photographs ever produced. Created by a group of U.S. government photographers, the images show Americans in every part of the nation. The collection contains more than forty black-and-white photographs from Alaska.

Selected highlight of this collection:

Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscapes Survey

The collections document achievements in architecture, engineering, and design in the United States and its territories through a comprehensive range of building types and engineering technologies. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 600 items for Louisiana.

Selected highlight of this collection:

Panoramic Photographs

The Panoramic Photograph Collection contains approximately four thousand images featuring American cityscapes, landscapes, and group portraits, including forty photographs from Alaska.

Selected highlight of this collection:

Posters: Artist Posters

The online Artist Posters consist of a small but growing proportion of the more than 85,000 posters in the Artist Poster filing series. This series highlights the work of poster artists, both identified and anonymous. It includes posters from the nineteenth century to the present day.

Selected highlight of this collection:

The Library of Congress has custody of the largest and most comprehensive cartographic collection in the world with collections numbering over 5.5 million maps, 80,000 atlases, 6,000 reference works, over 500 globes and globe gores, 3,000 raised relief models, and a large number of cartographic materials in other formats, including over 19,000 CDs/DVDs.

Cities and Towns

This category includes maps that depict individual buildings to panoramic views of large urban areas. These maps record the evolution of cities illustrating the development and nature of economic activities, educational and religious facilities, parks, street patterns and widths, and transportation systems.

Selected highlight from this collection:

Sanborn Maps

The Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps Online Checklist provides a searchable database of the fire insurance maps published by the Sanborn Map Company housed in the collections of the Geography and Map Division. The online checklist is based upon the Library's 1981 publication Fire Insurance Maps in the Library of Congress and will be continually updated to reflect new acquisitions. Browse the collection by location to locate more than 20 maps for Alaska.

A selection of highlights from this collection includes:

Transportation and Communication

These maps document the development and status of transportation and communication systems on the national, state, and local level. Transportation maps can depict canal and river systems, cycling routes , railway lines and systems, roads and road networks, and traffic patterns. Communication maps illustrate the location and distribution of telegraph routes, telephone systems and radio coverage.

A selection of highlights from this collection includes:

The moving image collections at the Library of Congress include a wide variety of films ranging from historic silent films to webcasts of recent Library events and performances. Search for your state by subject (begin with United States and then select Alaska).

Books & Beyond: Mystery Writer Dana Stabenow.