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The JoCoHistory web project (www.JoCoHistory.org) has recently unveiled a series of changes and improvements that further position it as an authoritative and comprehensive source for Johnson County historical information on the Web.
Visitors to the online site can now interact more easily and meaningfully with photographs due to software improvements. Users may position photos by dragging them with the mouse, give star ratings to items in the collection, leave comments about people and places depicted in photographs and more. The option to print or download copies of images is now built-in to the system.
JoCoHistory features an updated look and feel, including a new logo based on the Strang Line engines that once carried day-travelers across Johnson County. The site also has new content to offer local history enthusiasts and genealogists.
The Johnson County Obituary Index, long available as a separate tool provided by the Johnson County Library, has been incorporated into the JoCoHistory image database. A new index of local history articles from the Library’s vertical file has also been added. Now a single search on JoCoHistory will produce results for obituaries and vertical file materials alongside photographs, articles and maps already available.
JoCoHistory now includes a growing collection of digitized newspapers. Last year the Johnson County Museum scanned a near-complete run of Squire papers which were published by Tom Leathers for suburban audiences from 1959 to 2005. Approximately 160 issues from the 1960s are currently available on JoCoHistory, with new issues added continually as they are processed.
JoCoHistory launched in October of 2006 with funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and has been sustained by grants from the Johnson County Heritage Trust Fund and continuing participation of partner organizations. The site has grown to a collection of approximately 50,000 digital objects including photographs, historical atlases, aerial views and articles related to the history of Johnson County.
Current participants include the Johnson County Museum, Johnson County Library, Olathe Public Library, Johnson County Archives, Kansas School for the Deaf, Overland Park Historical Society and Lenexa Historical Society. Johnson County Library maintains the historical Web site. For more information call Johnson County Library (913) 826-4600 or Johnson County Museum (913) 715-2550.
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