Blitzing the Bunkers: Finding Aids – Past, Present and Future
Aerial photographic collections developed from the need for military intelligence, for cartographic mapping, for commercial gain or for specific targeted research. Over time, the value of historical aerial photography has been appreciated far beyond its original purpose, as it provides an irreplaceable record of the ever-changing landscapes and townscapes that surround us. Key to the reuse of these resources is access to the finding aids that index the individual photographs. It is argued that the potential of the information on traditional ledgers and sortie traces can be, and should be, unlocked through digitisation, to provide spatial indexes that may be accessed through remote Geographic Information Systems as part of integrated information resources delivered through spatial data infrastructures. The role of new and disruptive technologies is also considered to demonstrate the potential for accessing historical mosaicked imagery in browsers such as Google Earth.
KeywordsGeographic Information System Aerial Photography Aerial Survey Spatial Data Infrastructure Raster Image
The authors would like to thank Birger Stichelbaut for permission to reproduce the sample card index from the Box Collection. We are also grateful to Jack Stevenson and Dave Cowley for comments on earlier drafts of this chapter, but the views expressed in this chapter are those of the authors.
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