Using the Digital Archives: Start Here

Helpful information about navigating the Digital Collections at UA, with collection highlights organized by subject.

What's in the digital archives?

Most of the material in the UA Libraries Digital Collections comes from the W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library and the A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, both part of UA Libraries Division of Special Collections. As of October 2014, the repository contains over 100,000 items, including approximately

  • 74,000 manuscript items
  • 22,000 photographs
  • 2500 music scores (mid 19th-early 20th c.)
  • 1400 rare book items (mostly UA publications)
  • 250 audio items
  • 1550 online finding aids for collections which have not been digitized

The digital repository also contains all the Dissertations & Theses written by UA students since 2008, about 1450 total.

How do I search the digital archives?

Scout is UA Libraries' discovery interface. A search of Scout automatically includes a search of the digital collections. 

To search just for digital archives material, go to the Advanced Search page (linked below the search box) and check the box labeled "Digital Collections Only." You can even specify a type of resource.

Or if you're already on the search results page, look at the limiter "Content Provider" (panel at the bottom of the lefthand sidebar) and choose "University of Alabama Libraries Digital Collections."

Acumen is UA Libraries' homegrown digital content repository. You can search it directly.

Acumen is keyword anywhere search. Use the dropdown beside the search box to limit your search to a particular format, like photos or audio.

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