Library of Congress and the Top Treasures of the United States of America
Picture from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Library_of_Congress#/media/File:LOC_Main_Reading_Room_Highsmith.jpg
MegaVision president Ken Boydston traveled to Washington, D.C. in January 2009 to assist the Library of Congress and a team of imaging scientists image another ‘Top Treasure of the Library’, using a MegaVision camera and multispectral LED lighting. The January objective was to photograph the Gettysburg Address, which was delivered in 1863 and which has become one of the most famous and quoted speeches in American history.
There are five known manuscripts of the Address, and the Nicolay draft, which is believed to have been the copy which Lincoln used during his speech, was put on public display for several weeks in conjunction with activities celebrating Abraham Lincoln’s birthday (February 12, 1809), and as part of the inauguration ceremonies of president- elect Barack Obama.
During this time the document, which is ordinarily kept in a specially-designed, temperature-controlled, sealed display case, was removed from it’s protective environment and photographed using the multispectral technology which MegaVision has integrated into its EurekaVision™ system.
(Contrary to popular belief, the Gettysburg Address was not written on a train on the back of an envelope. President Lincoln wrote it on Executive Mansion stationery, and likely did the final editing while staying with a friend in Gettysburg before delivering the speech on November 19, four and one half months after the Civil War battle for which it is named.)
The photographing of rare and one-of-a-kind documents is an area of expertise for MegaVision, and the company’s services are regularly requested by both private organizations and governmental agencies engaged in cultural heritage imaging.
Santa Barbara based MegaVision introduced the first professional quality digital camera over 20 years ago and pioneered the dawn of the digital revolution in imaging. MegaVision continues its legacy of imaging excellence providing the highest quality camera systems for the professional, scientific, cultural and medical industry.
For more information about the Gettysburg Address visit: Gettysburg Address loc.gov and American Top Treasures loc.gov
- American Treasures of the Library of Congress: http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/trt034.html
- Library of Congress My LOC: http://myloc.gov/Exhibitions/gettysburgaddress/Pages/default.aspx
- Library of Congress Conservation Corner: http://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/09078/preservation.html