Web archiving is the process of collecting websites and the information they contain from the World Wide Web, and preserving them as they appeared at a given moment in an archive. One of the most famous web archives belongs to the Wayback Machine launched by the Internet Archive in 2001. Since then, it has archived over 338 billion web pages!
Why is web archiving important?
The lives and activities of communities are increasingly documented online; local news, events, disasters, celebrations — the experiences of citizens are now largely shared via social media and web platforms. In most instances, the Internet is the only place that information is available. But did you know the average lifespan of a webpage is only 90 days? That's not a long time for information to be around, especially if that information is only found on a single webpage!
But don't worry! Organizations like universities and public libraries, including Henderson Libraries, are working to create web archives of websites important to their communities. These web archives ensure their communities' ability to access the information as a trusted source in the future. This also means we can capture aspects of our community that are otherwise overlooked.
Through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Internet Archive, Henderson Libraries now has the ability to archive websites that are important to the Henderson Community! While we are actively preserving other formats of our community to add to our Local History Collection, such as photographs and documents, this grant provides the capability to add websites to that collection.
Some aspects of the Henderson community that we believe are important to capture include local government, education, spontaneous events, local businesses and organizations, community blogs, and events in the community. Below are some of the collections available to view online:
Can I nominate a website to be included in the Henderson Libraries' Community Web Archive?
The Henderson Libraries' Community Web Archive is a community-built archive, and it needs your input! If you have a site that you want to be included in the Web Archive, click the link here and fill out the form.
Henderson Libraries is part of Community Webs, a two-year Institute of
Museum and Library Sciences and Internet Archive funded program to provide education, applied training, cohort support, and web archiving services for public librarians to develop expertise in web archiving. More information about the Community Webs project can be found here.