Making history together
If you happen to like looking through old photos of cities, you can't miss the new online photo libraries featuring the history of the Argentine cities of Comodoro Rivadavia, San Nicolas and Campana. A selection of over 35,000 files detailing the close historical ties that Tecpetrol, Ternium and Tenaris have forged with the communities where they operate in Argentina.
The new platforms for the three Techint Group photo libraries in Argentina are already online, offering an innovative experience when it comes to finding out more about the past and present of the communities where the Group pursues its main activities.
The digitized photographs are from the photo libraries of Commodore Rivadavia, Campana and San Nicolas. The first contains 7,400 photographs, a project managed jointly with the Historical Archive of the Comodoro Secretary of Culture, with contributions and support from Tecpetrol.
The Campana photo library has 9,230 files and was set up by the Municipality of Campana working together with Tenaris. Created in 2013, its aim is to digitize and safeguard the collection of images belonging to the Jorge P. Fumiére Municipal Historical Archive.
Finally, the San Nicolas archives have 19,779 pictures, the work of Ternium and the Municipality of San Nicolas, whose aim is to protect, preserve and disseminate the city’s history through photographs of its past. All three projects receive the support of Fundación PROA.
The new sites offer visitors the chance to find things in a more intuitive way, thanks to simple or more advanced searches allowing them to select images either by subject or by author, among other categories. They can also choose to use a timeline and select a place or date before browsing through the over 35,000 photographs in a more dynamic way.
Files can also be downloaded in different sizes, to produce search aids as well as reports, and can be exported into PDF or spreadsheet formats, highlighting specific elements in galleries and home pages. The enormous task of updating these images is also linked to the social networks run by each community, where neighbors can contribute their images to keep building the collection.
Walter Luna, responsible for the Photographic Archive of Comodoro Rivadavia, shares his view that "these historical archives are repositories documenting our past," and explains how work began with the collections of administrative documentation from the Municipality. This was complemented by material donated by individual citizens, state institutions outside the municipal sphere, and private organizations. Thanks to this immense joint effort, it has been possible to compile, protect, preserve, digitize and disseminate historical memories through images with great historical value for our heritage.
In addition, “we also borrow pictures to be digitized which are then returned if a person wants to keep the original material. In these cases, the processes we carry out have to meet certain technical requirements, such as the file format (.tif), resolution, scanning and editing processes,” explains Walter.
The process of selecting the photographs is divided into three steps:
- The image is received and cataloged according to its historical value. The material is carefully handled, respecting the procedures established and the use of mandatory equipment and clothing.
- The photograph is encoded, scanned, organized and stored in virtual folders.
- A thematic index is established by word, year, location, subject or author to enable its speedy location.