SCRANTON — In a partnership between the National Park Service (NPS) and Google, Steamtown National Historic Site will be featured in the Google Cultural Institute, a digital platform which makes hundreds of historically and culturally significant objects in the National Park Service’s museum collection available online.
The Google Cultural Institute uses technologies similar to Google’s Street View – providing 360-degree views on Google Maps of locations around the world – to photograph and virtually map important artifacts, photos, records and works of art to share important material with global audiences and digitally preserve them for future generations.
U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell made the announcement at an event marking Black History Month at Tuskegee Airmen National Historic Site, one of the national parks featured in the Google Cultural Institute collection.
The NPS, celebrating its centennial anniversary this year, is home to one of the world’s largest museum systems. More than 380 park museums, 45 million objects and 76,000 linear feet of archives help tell powerful stories of America’s land, people, and significant events and ideas that continue to inspire the world.
Visitors to the National Park Service “channel” will be able to view more than 3,800 works for art, artifacts and records, as well as a Centennial Virtual Exhibit, which features a significant museum object from over 350 national park sites. Steamtown National Historic Site is proud to have objects from its museum collection featured as part of the partnership with the Google Cultural Institute, including a Tiffany & Co. silver tea set, circa 1866, that was donated to the park by the family of the late Watts Cooke, a former Delaware, Lackawanna & Western Railroad superintendent. Users can also build their own collections to share or take virtual, panoramic tours of homes of eminent Americans.
On Aug. 25, the NPS will celebrate 100 years of protecting, preserving and sharing the nation’s national parks. For the last 100 years, operating under the U.S. Department of the Interior, the NPS’s mission has expanded to help communities across the United States to revitalize their communities, preserve local history, celebrate local heritage, and create close-to-home opportunities for kids and families to get outside, be active, and have fun.
For more information on the NPS’s centennial effort, visit http://1.usa.gov/1QrR8Ld.