Hong Kong’s War Crimes Trials (HKWCT) Collection

Hong Kong’s War Crimes Trials (HKWCT) Collection

This collection stems from a research project conducted by Suzannah Linton, a law professor formerly at the University of Hong Kong (currently at Bangor University  in UK). Professor Linton collected 46 case files of war crimes trials held by the British military in Hong Kong after World War II that involved 123 accused persons, all Japanese nationals. Due to the copyright restrictions, the actual case files can only be accessed at a university in Hong Kong, but the website makes freely available other materials in the collection, including detailed case notes, photographs from the same period, personal accounts, and a bibliography.

This seems the first such collection that has been digitized. Does anyone know similar collections on the web?


UC Press E-Books Collection, 1982-2004

UC Press E-Books Collection, 1982-2004.

Formerly known as eScholarship Editions, this resource “includes almost 2,000 books from academic presses on a range of topics, including art, science, history, music, religion, and fiction” (UC Press). Over 500 titles in the collection are open to the public while the other titles are limited to users at the University of California. Dozens of books in Asian studies are in the category of “public access books”.

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AGSL Digital Collections Portal

AGSL Digital Collections Portal.

American Geographical Society Library (AGSL) at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee provides online access to a large number of digitized photos and maps, including several thousands of items on China, Japan, Korea, and Tibet. The AGSL Digital Collections Portal serves as an integrated search engine to all of the AGSL digital collections.

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BBC Country Profiles

BBC Country Profiles.

Developed by BBC News, the full profiles “provide an instant guide to history, politics and economic background of countries and territories, and background on key institutions.” (BBC News)

This resource is also listed as one of the best free reference web sites in 2009 by the RUSA Machine-Assisted Reference Section of the American Library Association. According to the review, each “profile includes an overview, map, facts, and current leaders. A media overview provides information on the press, television, radio, news agencies, and number of Internet users. Links provided on the side of the profile connect to the latest news and key stories, BBC links, background articles, related Internet sites and video and audio clips from the BBC archives. Additional features include timelines, recent news links, background articles, Internet sites, and BBC archive video and audio clips. Information on over 20 key international organizations is also included” (RUSA-MARS, ALA).

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HaithiTrust Digital Library

HathiTrust Digital Library

University of Michigan Library recently announced that fulltext search is now available across the entire HathiTrust Digital Library of more than 4.6 million volumes, including materials in Chinese, Japanese, and Korean (CJK). Jidong Yang, Head of Asia Library at the University of Michigan tested the fulltext search capability and found that the OCR accuracy for CJK materials is low. Also according to Jidong, “searching by Latin and even Cyrillic scripts seems to work pretty well. So it’s definitely a useful tool for searching western studies on East Asia. Compared with Google Book, Hathi has a more library-OPAC-like catalog (which is closely related to the new Mirlyn, Michigan’s VuFind-based OPAC) and thus provides a good alternative for those who often get lost in Google’s search interface.” (Jidong Yang, eastlib message, November 20, 2009)

For more info about Hathi see Large Scale Search Blog & Twitter.

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Internet Archive

Internet Archive.

The Internet Archive’s “purposes include offering permanent access for researchers, historians, scholars, people with disabilities, and the general public to historical collections that exist in digital format… Now the Internet Archive includes texts, audio, moving images, and software as well as archived web pages in our collections, and is working to provide specialized services relating to training, education, or adaptive reading or information access needs of blind or other persons with disabilities.” It includes many items related to East Asian studies, such as the Siku Quanshu collection.

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Botanical and cultural images of Eastern Asia, 1907-1927

Harvard University Arnold Arboretum: Botanical and cultural images of Eastern Asia, 1907-1927.

Based on the collections in Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, this “collection of eastern Asian photographs represents the work of intrepid plant explorers who traveled to exotic lands in the early years of the twentieth century and returned to the Arboretum with not only seeds, live plants, and dried herbarium specimens, but also with remarkable images of plants, people, and landscapes.” – Arnold Arboretum

The collection includes photographs from the travels of six explorers: John George Jack, Ernest Henry Wilson, Frank Nicholas Meyer, William Purdom, Joseph Hers, and Joseph Charles Francis Rock. The digital images can be retrieved through the Harvard Visual Information Access (VIA).

Arnold Arboretum also has a related online collection: South Central China and Tibet: Hotspot of Diversity.

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