American Museum Hangs Collection in Cyberspace
Native American Resource Center at The University of North Carolina
at Pembroke has a new address:
Some of the museum's
collection of Indian artifacts and history hangs in the comprehensive,
multimedia website. Created with the help of a North Carolina Humanities
Council grant, the Internet site contains photographs of exhibits, history
and audio recordings of local Native American music and Lumbee Tribal
Dr. Stanley Knick said the Internet project is another avenue to realize
the museum's mission. "We're in the information business, and this
is another way of getting information out about Native American history
and culture," Dr. Knick said. "It appears to be having an
effect already. We've had some responses from people near and far either
asking questions about the museum or commenting on their visit."
The Internet site
is organized to simulate a walking tour of the museum, said Dr. Oscar
Patterson, director of UNCP telecommunications and supervisor of construction
for the site.
"If you went
through the museum right now, this is what you'd see," Dr. Patterson
said. "We attempted to be as faithful as the medium allows to the
physical plan of the museum." While a cyberspace museum has some
limitations, it has many advantages besides worldwide accessibility.
"We plan to
update the site frequently and expand it in several directions,"
Dr. Knick said. "There are some costs associated with its creation,
but now it is part of what we do every day."
The museum's quarterly
newsletter, traveling exhibits, scholarly articles and video are all
possibilities for the future. Internet "chat rooms" with lectures
and discussions and live video are also possibilities for the museum.
"My hope is
that we can have art exhibits like next month's Keeping the Circle'
hang in our site," Dr. Knick said.
The Native American
Resource Center is one of the distinctive features of UNC Pembroke,
and the new Internet exhibit highlights its collections.
"It is something
that not every university has, and the museum links the University to
its past," Dr. Knick said. "I think this is a real good opportunity
for us to show the world what we have to offer."
to University Newswire