EMC Heritage Trust Grant Helps CNE Archives Preserve Key Pieces of Canadian History
TORONTO, Ontario – August 26, 2009 – EMC Corporation, the world leader in information infrastructure solutions, today announced the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) Archives, in Toronto, Ont., is one of the worldwide recipients of the EMC Heritage Trust Project awards. The Heritage Trust awards are given to organizations working on projects designed to protect and improve access to information in communities around the world. This year marks the second anniversary of the Heritage Trust Project.
The CNE Archives is responsible for preserving the public records of the Canadian National Exhibition. Running annually since 1879 at Toronto’s Exhibition Place, the CNE attracts approximately 1.3 million visitors a year over the course of 18 days. Attractions at the CNE include rides, games and events including an air show. Given the CNE’s popularity and age, the records in the CNE Archives mirror the changing face of Canada over the past 130 years.
Since 1964, the CNE Archives has been preserving written documents and photographs chronicling the CNE’s history. The Archives also possesses a number of films taken at the CNE, some dating back as far as the 1920s.
Most of the films had been donated to the Archives and had not been properly stored before their donation. As a result, many of the reels have begun to deteriorate. The films include footages taken from the CNE midway, events such as dog swims and famous entertainers like Bob Hope and Duke Ellington.
“For the most part, the preservation of film remained a ‘final frontier’ awaiting some day when funds became available to permit the digitization of our small, but unique, collection of film,” said Linda Cobon, Manager of Records & Archives for the CNE Archives. “Thanks to the grant from the EMC Heritage Trust Project that day has finally arrived.”
The EMC grant, worth approximately US$15,000, includes a pair of Iomega StorCenter Pro ix4-200r 4-Terabyte, network-attached storage (NAS) rackmount servers and a cash grant that will cover the purchase of a range of equipment including a film scanning system and freezers for the Archives’ films.
CNE Archives has already inspected the films to determine their physical condition and catalogued the content. The next step is to digitize the films and store the digitized versions on the Iomega NAS servers. Once the films are digitized, researchers and the public will be able to view the most important films in the Archives’ reading room. The Archives also plans to make portions of select films available on the organization’s Web site and will screen some films at its booth during the CNE.
“There’s some great footage, including shots of buildings that no longer exist” said Cobon. “We’re hoping researchers and younger generations will access the film to learn more about our country’s past and see how Canada has progressed through the years.”
“We’re proud to be able to support the preservation of a significant piece of Canadian history,” said Michael Sharun, Managing Director of EMC Canada. “The CNE has provided a snapshot of our country’s culture for 130 years and through the digitization of the CNE Archives’ film collection, more Canadians will have an opportunity to see how tastes, fashion and technology have evolved over time.”
The EMC Information Heritage Initiative was formalized in 2007 to help preserve and protect humanity’s information heritage and make important historical documents and cultural artifacts readily accessible via the Internet for research and education purposes. In conjunction with this initiative, the EMC Heritage Trust Project was created to recognize and support any public or private local organization, institution or individual projects around the world that are designed to protect and improve access to invaluable information.
For the full list of 2009 Heritage Trust grant recipients or for more information, visit: http://canada.emc.com/heritage_trust
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(Left to Right) Jim McMillen, Mike Sharun - EMC Canada's Managing Director Michael Sharun presents CNE Association President Jim McMillen with a 2009 EMC Heritage Trust Project award.
The CNE Archives will use its EMC Heritage Trust Project grant todigitize its film collection.
Each film was carefully inspected to determine its physical condition.
Over the years many amateur moviemakers donated their 16mm films to the CNE Archives.
Some of the films depict the 1961 grandstand performance of Hey Mr. Policeman by the Canadettes.
The CNE's midway, circa 1957.
The CNE's Princes' Gate, soon after its opening in 1927.
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