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Wayne State Library System Adds over 20,000 Images and Videos to Virtual Motor City Project

Because of a six month extension to an Institute of Library and Museum Services grant, the Wayne State University Library System and the Walter P. Reuther Library just finished adding around 20,000 images and over 400 videos to the Virtual Motor City photo collection, an online resource already containing digitized images from the Detroit News Collection, a photojournalistic resource held at the Reuther Library.

This is the first time that videos were digitized as part of the VMC Project. The new videos added are Detroit News newsreels from the 1920s and include footage from local people and events to more well-known subjects like Babe Ruth and Helen Keller. The videos can be browsed at

The Library System’s Web Development Team added more than 20,000 images to collection since 2005, bringing the total number of images to over 36,000.

Donated to Wayne State in 1997, the full collection consists of more than 800,000 photonegative images, many of them on vintage glass plate. The Detroit News was a pioneer in the use of photojournalism equipment and techniques, which gives many of the early images recorded on glass and film additional historical significance. The collection is the largest single collection of graphic images of any kind at the Reuther Library.

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