Journal of the South African Veterinary Association
On-line version ISSN 2224-9435
Print version ISSN 1019-9128
BREYTENBACH, Amelia; LOURENS, Antoinette and MARSH, Susan. The role of the Jotello F. Soga Library in the digital preservation of South African veterinary history. J. S. Afr. Vet. Assoc. [online]. 2013, vol.84, n.1, pp.00-00. ISSN 2224-9435.
The history of veterinary science in South Africa can only be appreciated, studied, researched and passed on to coming generations if historical sources are readily available. In most countries, material and sources with historical value are often difficult to locate, dispersed over a large area and not part of the conventional book and journal literature. The Faculty of Veterinary Science of the University of Pretoria and its library has access to a large collection of historical sources. The collection consists of photographs, photographic slides, documents, proceedings, posters, audio-visual material, postcards and other memorabilia. Other institutions in the country are also approached if relevant sources are identified in their collections. The University of Pretoria's institutional repository, UPSpace, was launched in 2006. This provided the Jotello F. Soga Library with the opportunity to fill the repository with relevant digitised collections of diverse heritage and learning resources that can contribute to the long-term preservation and accessibility of historical veterinary sources. These collections are available for use not only by historians and researchers in South Africa but also elsewhere in Africa and the rest of the world. Important historical collections such as the Arnold Theiler collection, the Jotello F. Soga collection and collections of the Onderstepoort Journal of Veterinary Research and the Journal of the South African Veterinary Association are highlighted. The benefits of an open access digital repository, the importance of collaboration across the veterinary community and other prerequisites for the sustainability of a digitisation project and the importance of metadata to enhance accessibility are covered.