I.V. Kiselev

The National Library of Russia, St. Petersburg, Russia



The report deals with the status, problems and prospects in the building process of the e-library of maps and atlases. The given work is carried out in the context of an e-library general idea within the National Library of Russia (NLR). The major process constituents include: planned digitizing of cartographic stocks, digitizing related to the activities under the separate thematic projects, access providing to total electronic resources as well as making of the own D-ROM editions.

The activity under the separate thematic projects became an initial stage in the process of NLR map e-library forming. The joint Russia-USA Meeting at the Borders project proved the most significant of them. Its aim was to form a bilingual (English-Russian) digital library. Its content related to development of Siberia and the Russian Far East, concurrent development of the American West, as well as to a meeting of the Russians and the Americans in Alaska, and in the North-West cost of America. Maps were considered the essential element of this library. Access to these materials is available on the Internet.

Several thematic projects have been started to create the CD-ROM editions. There are as follows: collection Peter the Great. From Ship Carpenter to Admiral; "Finland from the 17th to the 20th cc.; "Mapped Northlands"; Saint Petersburg City Plans by F.F. Shubert and M. Makhayev.

In the recent years, the Library has started systematic activities to digitize precious cartographic editions.

The collection of St Petersburg printed city plans was the first to digitize according to the scheduled order. Issuing of the St Petersburg, Having Been Mapped for 300 Years, electronic album was among the applied resulting outcomes of this work. The album was published to celebrate the Northern Capital anniversary.

This year they finish digitizing of the 18th century Russian maps and atlases collection. One could say the same about the Joint Electronic Catalogue of the Russian Charters. Availability of these copy corpuses will enable to create an electronic database, containing both images and complete scientific explanations for the maps of that time.

The electronic library system of the Cartography Division also includes periodically repeated thematic exhibitions of digitized maps. One could see them on the library website.

Now the mentioned corpus of the digitized maps has just formed the electronic library of maps. It is local (except materials from the Meeting at the Borders website). The access to its resources is mainly available on the Library intranet. The distant users are provided with complete information about library services, regulations and access conditions to them. Several e-documents being kept in the electronic library are available on the NLR external server with the purpose of promotion.

The Cartography Division Electronic Library also includes a catalogue system including an accession catalogue of the Cartography Division (RUSMARC environment) and accession catalogues of cartographic publications for previous years. These are based on the scanned index cards from a traditional catalogue and are exposed for reviewing in the OPAC system.

Thus, with certainty, one might say that the full-scale e-library of cartographic editions is being established at the National Library of Russia.