Digitizing and preserving the written heritage of Bulgaria


Project BG0046 “Digitizing and preserving the written heritage of Bulgaria”

Supported by a grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA Financial Mechanism


As part of the projecta modern Digital Center for Manuscripts, Books and Periodicalshas been created andthe completingof the National Register of books issued in Bulgaria has begun(Books in print).

What has been purchased and installed:

  • A high-end scanning technology allowing scanning of various types of documents, including non-standard sizes;This technology allows the scanning of larger volumes of documents;
  • An equipment for permanent archiving of electronic publications;
  • A latest version of the software managing archiving ofdocuments, allowing better search and use of digital copies; security system based on a new antivirus software.

Within this project alone, a total of 214 documents have been digitized in 51,350 files.All scanned documents have been provided with very detailed metadata in Bulgarian and someof them have been translated into English.Text files with additional informationhave been attached to some of the documents as suggested bythe experts.The high quality of the scanned originals and the metadata completeness are impressive.

The documents are widely availablefor use and can be found on the National Library’s website www.nationallibrary.bg in the “Digital Library” heading and in the respective sections:

The National Register of books publishedin Bulgaria(Books in print) already includes 27 large Bulgarian publishing houses and bookstores.A link to the Registry can be foundon the National Library’s website, where full information about the Register has been provided.
An extremely useful exchange of experience with the national libraries of the donor countries – Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway was carried outwithin the project. Representatives of these libraries visited the National Library of Bulgaria and acquainted themselves with the work of the new Digital Center and shared this experience in the field of digitization in their own countries.
Detailed information about the projectfrom its inception is available on the website of the library – www.nationallibrary.bg. Project details can be found in the Annual Report of the National Library for 2009 and 2010. Billboards have been made and the Digital Center has been equipped with signboards.Four leaflets and promotional materials have been published.Several reports and presentations at various conferences and other scientific forums have provided detailed information on the content of the project.Information about the project has beencommunicated through broadcasting and reports in the electronic media. The project was officially presented at the National Library on November 1, 2010, the National Enlighteners Daybefore a large audience, in the presence of diplomats and representatives of the Bulgarian government and the donor countries.An official delegation of the Kingdom of Norway, foreign and Bulgarian journalists and guests visited the library in connection to the project.They greatly appreciated the excellent job doneby the library and how the funds had been used.
The project became widely known in Bulgaria and the results we have achieved had a great impact on the policies and processes of digitization in libraries, archives, museums and other institutions in the country. After the completion of the project, we have become a highly sought after partner in international and European projects and programmes.