DiMenna-Nyselius Library Joins National Commemoration of Frederick Douglass Day

DiMenna-Nyselius Library Joins National Commemoration of Frederick Douglass Day

Students transcribe at the Douglass Day Celebration, utilizing both digital and print materials - sitting around tables.

Students transcribe at the Douglass Day Celebration, utilizing both digital and print materials.

In partnership with the Library of Congress, Fairfield University contributed to the national Douglass Day Transcribe-a-Thon event on Feb. 14.

On Feb. 14, Fairfield University students, faculty, and staff gathered in the DiMenna-Nyselius Library's Innovation Lab to join libraries nationwide for the annual Transcribe-a-Thon event in commemoration of Frederick Douglass Day. A former enslaved man, Douglass was a leader in the abolitionist movement. Through his writing and public speeches, he advocated for equality and human rights until his death in 1895.

In partnership with the Library of Congress, participants transcribed more than 72 historical documents — from public communications to intimate family letters — offering a multifaceted glimpse into Douglass's lifelong fight for Black rights and citizenship.

This was the DiMenna-Nyselius Library's second year of participation in the Douglass Day event. "We're transcribing important primary source documents to improve search, access, and discovery of Black history," said Lisa Thornell, head of library outreach & communications. "This collective effort unlocks historical treasures, making them digitally searchable and ensuring wider exploration and understanding of this vital chapter in our nation's story.” 

The event at Fairfield featured a virtual livestream in which the national event organizers conducted interviews with historians and reflected on Douglass’ work and legacy.

For more information on events by the DiMenna-Nyselius Library, check out their calendar of events. 

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