AUSTIN, TX – The Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) announces the launch of the Texas Digital Archive (TDA), a searchable online repository designed to manage, preserve, and provide access to the electronic records collections held at the Texas State Archives. Virtual visitors are invited to explore our shared heritage through digitized prints, photographs, documents and manuscripts made available through a $706,593 appropriation for the 2016-2017 biennium from the 84th legislative session.
“We thank the Texas Legislature for making funds available to finally launch the Texas Digital Archive,” commented Mark Smith, Director and Librarian of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. “This project will ensure that these materials of permanent value to the state of Texas will be preserved, maintained, and made available to Texans now and for generations to come.”
The launch of the TDA comes as the result of the transfer of over six terabytes of electronic records from the administration of former Texas governor Rick Perry in early 2015. These records, along with select images from TSLAC’s historic prints and photographs collections, make up the foundation of an ever-growing digital research resource for all ages and for generations to come. In the coming months, TSLAC archivists will add more than 150,000 files created during its decade-long digitization program, including over 18 terabytes of digital audio files from the Texas Senate that date from 1972 to 2006.
“Long-term preservation of electronic data is a challenge,” explained Texas State Archivist Jelain Chubb, “especially as the hardware and software used to create digital records change so frequently. Fortunately, the protocols and tools we have in the TDA will help us ensure authenticity, integrity and accessibility of digital records over time.”
TSLAC will begin working with select state agencies to acquire, preserve, and make accessible their electronic records and continue to develop the process, procedures, and workflows governing the TDA in 2016. The Texas Digital Archive is built on the Preservica preservation system and uses Amazon Web Services for offsite cloud-based storage of digital materials. TSLAC is the first state archives to use the system in the Amazon Government cloud, which offers heightened back-end security for sensitive and restricted records while providing access to both archival staff and researchers.
Visitors can learn more about the Texas Digital Archive by visiting www.tsl.texas.gov/texasdigitalarchive and exploring the growing collection of archival materials vital to the story of our state.