In 2017, the Carleton College Archives began a multi-year partnership with Saving Tape to systematically digitize almost 60,000 35mm photographic slides. The archive is housed at the Gould Library on the campus of Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota.
Carleton had previously cataloged the slides, storing them in a hanging sleeve system which was efficiently fitted into bankers boxes. Multiple boxes were delivered to Saving Tape in batches, along with a digital portfolio of empty folders which were pre-named to match the naming convention assigned to each sheet of slides.
Saving Tape technicians scanned the 35mm slides as high resolution TIFF images, then loaded the pre-named digital folders with the scanned files, finally returning the slides to the original sheets. Systematic batch processing continued, into the Covid 19 pandemic, until the project objectives were completed in 2020. Carleton Archives has now engaged Saving Tape to scan a large archive of medium and large format black & white photographic negatives. This project will be described in a future post.
Nat Wilson, who until recently was digital archivist at Carleton College Library, provided the following reflection following the conclusion of the slide archiving project:
“[Saving Tape] did an amazing job creating our scans and worked closely with us to provide a product that worked great with our archive systems. Their expertise and care have been invaluable to our digitization projects.”