Google has today announced that the Nelson Mandela multimedia archive has gone live. The archive was part of a $1.25 million grant to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory in order to bring photographs, recordings, and documents to the web. The Centre is based in Johannesburg, South Africa, and is dedicated to thoroughly documenting Mandela.
The new archive will provide access to a wealth of information about Nelson Mandela, including letters written to friends and family during his 27 year imprisonment, as well as diary entries. Numerous photographs will also be available, the highlight being the earliest known photograph taken of Mandela.
Google have worked with the NMCM in order to make the information as easy to access as possible. For example, if you’re particularly interested in the years Mandela spent in prison, there’s a quick “Prison Years” exhibit link that will offer up the relevant information. There are several sections available that detail Mandela’s life in different ways.
Google have undertaken similar projects in the past as part of the Cultural Institute. Previously they have digitized the Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as the Yad Vashem Holocaust materials.