Launch of long-awaited Havana Archive Project!!!

The Hampshire College Library is thrilled to announce the launch of the Havana Archive Project, an Open Access digital photographic archive containing over 8,000 photographs of the 1,055 most significant buildings in the Historic Center of Havana, Cuba (as determined by Dr. Eusebio Leal, Director of the Office of the Historian) at the beginning of the restoration of Havana in the early 1980s.

Begun in 2012, the project was a collaboration between Jacqueline Hayden, Professor Emerita of Film and Photography, and students from Hampshire College with Plan Maestro, Office of the Historian. The digital archive is hosted by the Five College Compass: Digital Collections and the Center for Research Libraries.

We are extremely grateful for the generosity of the Center for Research Libraries’ Latin American Materials Project (LAMP) which awarded Hampshire College a grant back in 2015 to create metadata and complete the digitization of the thousands of photographs documenting these buildings (declared World Heritage Monuments by UNESCO in 1982) in the center of Havana.

Many thanks go to Inés Arrubla,  Jacqueline Hayden, Shaun Trujillo, Rachel Leach, Jennifer King, Abigail Baines, Emily Moran, Angelina Altobellis, Rachel Beckwith, Tatjana Mackin, and Jessica C. Neal.  This project was truly a collaborative effort!

We are thrilled to make these photographs accessible to the world today, on January 28, which also happens to be the the birth date of Jose Martí (January 28, 1853 – May 19, 1895) Cuban poet, journalist, translator, professor, and publisher, who was born in Havana.   Martí is considered “a Cuban national hero because of his role in the liberation of his country. … After Martí ‘s death, one of his poems from the book, Versos Sencillos (Simple Verses) was adapted to the song “Guantanamera,” which has become the definitive patriotic song of Cuba.”

We hope you will enjoy using this collection for your research and personal interests, and celebrate Hampshire College’s long collaboration with Cuba.

San Ignacio, Havana Archive ProjectImage credit: San Ignacio from the Havana Archive Project

Credit: Wikipedia entry on Jose Martí

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