Hundreds of items from the Oak Park Public Library and community partner The Ernest Hemingway Foundation of Oak Park are now live at the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) as part of the Illinois Digital Heritage Hub. The DPLA serves as a portal for students, teachers, scholars, and the public to search through millions of items across America’s libraries, archives, and museums.
Rare photographs, school assignments, and childhood ephemera related to Ernest and Marcelline Hemingway's lives in Oak Park were digitized and first included in the Illinois Digital Archives (IDA), a service of the Illinois State Library, in 2016. The IDA collections are some of the first to be added to DPLA as part of the Illinois Digital Heritage Hub, a collaboration between the Illinois State Library, the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI), Chicago Public Library, and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Inclusion of the collections in the DPLA means broader access and searchability to the already digitized items. Powerful keyword searching and a variety of search tools allow for multiple points of discovery. Users can find and interact with Ernest and Marcelline Hemingway’s childhood photographs, artwork, writings, and related photographs that depict Oak Park at the turn of the century. These items contribute to existing Hemingway scholarship and highlight the significance of Ernest and Marcelline Hemingway’s Oak Park upbringing.