Hawaiʻi's Technology Community

"Revolutionizing" Accessibility to State Archived Documents

I don't suppose a lot of people in the tech industry actually go to the state archives, but this entry may be of interest to many of you nonetheless.

I have absolutely no idea how many other states have archives that includes its own pre-statehood period, but our Hawai'i State Archives has archived documents that pre-dates its own statehood by more than 100 years.

Have you, or someone you know, tried to go to our state archives building only to find out:
  • it is only open from 9am until 4pm,
  • it is not open on the weekends, or
  • it is closed because of a furlough day.

Although the State Archives building is open to the public, its hours of operation are not very public-friendly. More specifically, it is not working public friendly. For the retired and unemployed access probably isn't a concern.

"Revolutionizing" accessibility to archived information seems to be on the horizon. Ka Huli Ao Center for Excellence in Native Hawaiian Law, at the William S. Richardson School of Law is developing its digital archives collection. The digital archives greatly enhances accessibility to these archived documents, long after the doors to the state building (paid for by state taxpayers) are closed for either the day or the weekend. Actually, researchers may not even have to leave their homes or offices.

CLICK HERE to read more specific information on how Ka Huli Ao is revolutionizing archived information with is online database.

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Comment by M. Chantiny on February 5, 2010 at 3:05pm
More info from presentation last week at UH Law School: Fedora repository with Solr search engine site URL: (
Comment by Kimo Watanabe on February 5, 2010 at 7:36am
Thanks for the contact info. I'll hit them up.
Comment by M. Chantiny on February 4, 2010 at 7:44pm
All the pacific material listed in their microfilm order list: ... plus ...? You could ask them:
Law Library Microform Consortium
Mailing Address : P.O. Box 1599
Kaneohe, HI 96744
Physical Address : Windward Community College
University of Hawaii
45-720 Keaahala Road
Kaneohe, HI 96744
Email :
Website Contact:
Toll-Free Calls : (800)235-4446
Regular Phone : (808)235-2200
Fax : (808)235-1755
Comment by Kimo Watanabe on February 4, 2010 at 7:29pm
Do you have a sense for how many docs you're talking about for the project by any chance?
Comment by M. Chantiny on February 4, 2010 at 7:25pm
LLMC is starting a project to scan all the Pacific law material that they microfilmed long long ago from Hamilton (the microfilm is not good enough to digitize from). In exchange for using their fancy scanner part of the time, we will be putting 20 hours of student labor into the project. Once LLMC finishes the stuff they already have cataloged in their system (i.e. the stuff that was microfilmed) they will start on things that they couldn't afford to do back in the microfilm days. Whenever all the rest of the Pacific law material is completely scanned, then they want to move on to legal material in the Hawaiian collection. But if the Ka Huli Ao project is going to scan the same stuff seems like there would be no need. I have no idea what the time table for completing the Pacific materials might be. Certainly more than a year, less than 5?
Comment by Tara Severns on February 4, 2010 at 6:01pm
Martha, today, someone from the Law Library Microfilm Consortium told me they were working with folks at UHM Pacific collection on a digitization project. Can you tell us anything about that?
Comment by Joe Dane on February 4, 2010 at 5:13pm
Kimo -- I believe they are using Fedora as the repository. I imagine if you contacted the law school they'd be able to get you in touch with the folks behind the project.
Comment by Kimo Watanabe on February 4, 2010 at 3:45pm
Does anyone know what these folks are using for search?
Comment by M. Chantiny on February 4, 2010 at 3:07pm
Also forgot to add - the State Archives does have some material available online:
They use the Greenstone open source digital collection software.
Comment by M. Chantiny on February 4, 2010 at 3:04pm
FYI -- UH Manoa Hamilton library is doing a lot of work making scholarly publications and other research materials available using the dSpace open source software.

I'm a little surprised that no one has approached us about this project.


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