Archiving the University Web


Thanks to combined support from the University of Scranton’s Academic Affairs and Planning and Information Resources divisions, the Weinberg Memorial Library has partnered with Archive-It (a subscription service from nonprofit Internet Archive) to capture and preserve University-related websites for the enduring future.

Part of the Weinberg Memorial Library’s mission is to “preserve and promote the history of the University,” and our University Archives has long collected and preserved photographs, documents, and other records from the past.

Increasingly, though, our students, faculty, and staff communicate using dynamic digital media instead of paper or film. For example, the University’s undergraduate catalog is no longer a print publication but a database, and instead of finding printed newsletters in our mailboxes, we get our weekly University news digitally via Royal News. And unfortunately, this kind of web content is surprisingly vulnerable to digital degradation and loss over the long term.

We could preserve a paper version of that dynamic information (say, by printing out Royal News each week) or take a PDF or image screenshot of it, but in doing so we’d lose its interactivity and searchability. Ideally, in the future we’ll want to be able to access archived web content the same way we access it now — that is, by browsing and searching.

That’s where web archiving comes in. Archive-It’s web archiving service allows us to crawl and capture web pages in ways that preserve their dynamic and functional aspects – including active links and embedded media like images, videos, animations, and PDF documents.

We’re certainly not the first ones to recognize the importance of web archiving in higher education. 97 other colleges & universities have already signed on with Archive-It, including fellow Jesuit universities Georgetown, Creighton, and Marquette, and fellow Pennsylvania schools Penn State, Drexel, and Bucknell. Several universities have created web archives that document important topics or events, like the American University in Cairo’s January 25th Revolution project or the University of Virginia’s collection of web and social media content relating to the resignation and reinstatement of President Teresa Sullivan.

Here at the Weinberg we plan to focus our early web archiving efforts on our own University web content (like our main website and our athletics site) and the University-related social media sites (like our YouTube channel and many Facebook pages) where our community shares its stories. Over time, as we develop expertise (and hopefully secure recurring funding!), we’ll work with faculty to identify and explore the possibility of collecting external websites relevant to current and future scholarship at the University of Scranton.

Our first step, though, is to seek input from our campus community regarding what is most important to preserve for the future. We invite members of the University community to send us questions, concerns, or suggestions. Take a peek at our first experimental crawls, and let us know if you’d like to be involved in web archiving at the University of Scranton!

Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine has some snapshots of the University website dating back to 1998. With Archive-It, we can periodically and systematically capture and preserve the entire University website – and any other related web content our community needs.

Library 20th Anniversary Celebration Video

This past Saturday, the Friends of the Weinberg Memorial Library honored award winning poet, biographer, fiction writer and educator Jay Parini, Ph.D., with the 2012 Royden B. Davis, S.J., Distinguished Author Award. We also kicked off the Library’s 20th anniversary celebration with another honored guest, American Library Association President Maureen Sullivan.

The evening was a wonderful success, and we’re so grateful to our event sponsors, the event planning committee, all of our Friends, and the many Library and University faculty and staff members who have contributed to our 20th Anniversary festivities.

The celebration is far from over, though – check out our calendar of events and join us for lectures, conversations, and our first ever wine-tasting fundraiser!

“Card Catalogs, Computers, and Learning Commons”

The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Memorial Library is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year.  All are invited to enjoy the 20th Anniversary Exhibit entitled “Card Catalogs, Computers, and Learning Commons” on the 5th floor Heritage Room of the library throughout the fall semester.  Students are encouraged to test their knowledge of the library and win fun prizes with an exhibit trivia quiz, available in both print and mobile friendly versions on the 5th floor.  Answer the short quiz using the exhibit captions as hints and place the quiz in the box provided on the 5th floor.  All correct trivia winners (students only) will be rewarded with a lovely bookmark and will be entered into random drawings to win fun giveaways every week throughout the fall semester.


20th Anniversary Exhibit and Fun Giveaways

U of S Library, 1953


  • Did you know that the WML building is the third location for the University’s campus library?
  • Where was the first library on campus located?
  • How many years was the library located in the Alumni Memorial building?
  • How can students win fun prizes and giveaways?!?



Find out the answers to these questions and brush up on your knowledge of the library’s history by visiting the exhibit, “Card Catalogs, Computers, and Learning Commons.” As part of WML’s 20th Anniversary celebration the exhibit will be on display in the 5th floor Heritage Room throughout the fall semester.

Students are encouraged to test their knowledge of the library and win fun prizes with an exhibit trivia quiz, available in both print and mobile friendly versions on the 5th floor.  Answer the short quiz using the exhibit captions as hints and place the quiz in the box provided on the 5th floor.  All correct trivia winners (students only) will be entered into random drawings to win fun giveaways every week throughout the fall semester!

Pinterest, Posterity, and the 125-Year History of the University of Scranton


This summer, we’ve been experimenting with new ways of displaying and sharing all of the interesting items from the University Archives that we’ve uploaded into our digital collections. With the University’s 125th anniversary coming up next year, we’re especially looking for fun ways to share our campus history with University of Scranton students, alumni, and friends.

The Library’s Digital Services department has been putting together Pinterest boards to highlight some of our favorite photographs – and even our favorite Aquinas headlines – from the last 125 years. We’re still experimenting, so check out our pins and let us know what you think!

Follow Me on Pinterest

Digital Collections, New and Improved

We’ve just put a shiny, new interface on our digital collections, and we’d love for you to take a look!  Some of the new features we’re excited about:

  • A new homepage for Digital Collections
  • A new University History page where you can cross-search all of our University-related collections
  • Improved browsing, searching, and viewing
  • Easier ways to download and print photos and documents from our collections
  • Tagging, commenting, and sharing

Take our new collections for a test drive, and then let us know what you think! There are still a few quirks we’re working out, so if you run into any problems, just let us know at

Preserving Your Family Memories – Workshop

Next week is our spring break, and even though our students will be gone, the rest of the University will still be open and working. This year, we decided to take advantage of the  break as a good time to host one of our Technology on Your Own Terms series workshops.  While we usually focus on forward-looking emerging technologies and how we can create and explore new information, we thought it would be interesting to take a different view this time and learn about how we can preserve existing information.   In a two-part workshop, we’ll examine how to preserve physical records (Part I) and digital records (Part II) of your personal and family history.

Preserving Your Family Memories: Part I (Physical)
Tuesday, March 13 from 12:00pm – 1:00pm in WML305

Special Collections Librarian Michael Knies will discuss the basic preservation problems relating to personal collections of books, photographs, negatives, personal papers, audio/visual recordings, and other paper-based collectibles.  Limited attention will be paid to three dimensional objects. Proper storage and handling will be emphasized. A light lunch will be provided. (Taught by Michael Knies, Weinberg Memorial Library)

All faculty and staff members are welcome, but seats are limited, so please register for sessions you plan to attend at (under Technology On Your Own Terms).

Happy Halloween! Vote for your Favorite!

Haven’t quite decided on a Halloween costume yet?  Maybe these archived photos of past U of S theater students will provide inspiration.

Before the U of S became co-ed in 1972, the female roles in University plays were filled by male students.

Cast from "What Happened to Jones" during the mid 1920's. Frank O’Hara ’25, the late administrator who served the University for 53 years and for whom the O’Hara Awards are named, is seated third from the right.
Scene from "What Happened to Jones" during mid 1920's

Vote for your favorite “lady.” Who do you think was prettiest?

1. Leonard Fagan, Esq. ’25 as the lovely Amy Spettigue in “Charlie’s Aunt,” mid 1920’s

2. Frank O’Hara ’25 as the leading lady in “The Man from Mexico,” 1923

3. Thomas Knight ’26 as the enchanting Ella Delahay in “Charlie’s Aunt,” mid 1920’s

4. Joseph McGowan ’25 in “The Man from Mexico,” 1923

5. Rev. William Giroux as Donna Lucia D’Alvadorez in “Charlie’s Aunt,” mid 1920’s

[polldaddy poll=5619116]

Presidential Inaugurations through the Years

Walking around campus, you can see preparations are in full swing for tomorrow’s inauguration of the twenty-fifth president of the University of Scranton, Reverend Kevin P. Quinn, S.J., J.D., Ph.D.  As part of the festivities welcoming Fr. Quinn to the university community, we’d like to share a few images from some of the past presidential inaugurations.

Recently appointed as the eleventh university president, Bro. Eliseus Leonard, F.S.C. (1940-42), shakes hands with his predecessor, Bro. Denis Edward F.S.C. (1931-40).

At his inauguration ceremony, Rev. J. Eugene Gallery, S.J. (1947-53), fourteenth university president, receives a copy of the university’s original charter from Rev. Edward G. Jacklin, vice president of the university and dean of students.  Seated at the far left is Orphans’ Court Judge, James F. Brady.

Diamond anniversary convocation and inauguration of the sixteenth university president, Rev. Edward J. Sponga, S.J. (1963-56). He stands with Rev. William G. Kelly, S.J. (right).

The seventeenth university president, Rev. Aloysius C. Galvin, S.J. (1965-70) along with family members present at his inauguration. From left to right, John T. Galvin (brother), Sister Helen Mercedes, SND (sister), Fr. Galvin, and Mrs. Herbert O’Connor, Jr. (sister).

Inauguration of Rev. William J. Byron, S.J. (right), twenty-first university president (1975-82).  He shakes hands with Rev. Edwin A. Quain, S.J., who served as acting president in 1975.

Rev. J.A. Panuska, S.J. (1982-98) (right), twenty-second university president, receives the University Mace, a symbol of educational authority and institutional identity, from Fr. Byron.

Loyola, Old and New

Yesterday’s naming ceremony for the beautiful new Loyola Science Center had us thinking about its older counterpart across the street – Loyola Hall.  At the time of its 1956 dedication, Loyola Hall was considered a model of modernity, a “wonderland of science.” Costing just over $1.1 million, it brought together the University’s four science departments – engineering, physics, biology, and chemistry – under one roof, and even provided a penthouse suite for the University’s radio station.

At yesterday’s ceremony, speakers stressed how the glass walls in the new Loyola Science Center would make the process of science visible and open to all. But in 1956, different materials excited the community’s attention: an Aquinas article highlighted Loyola Hall’s Italian terrazzo floors and stairways, vinyl laboratory floors, and green porcelain and steel chalkboards.  Lockers and bulletin boards lined the halls, and best of all, the University’s scientists could enjoy the luxury of air conditioning as they studied and experimented.

Loyola Hall was the first step in an ambitious plan to construct a true campus for the University on the site of the Scranton Estate.  Then, in 1956, it was a symbol of things to come, a visible testimony to the brightness of the University’s future. Today, it is a vestige of another time, a reminder of how much the University has grown.

The University plans to raze Loyola Hall sometime in the next few years, when Loyola Science Center is complete and fully occupied.  For us, though we’re excited about the new building and look forward to a better view of the Estate, there will always be something special about that plot of land behind the Monroe Avenue wall.