Dearborn, MI — For nearly a decade, The Henry Ford has worked to digitize its unparalleled collection of artifacts that tell the story of America’s traditions of ingenuity, resourcefulness and innovation in order to make them more accessible, to educate and inspire those around the world.
The organization has now digitized its 100,000th artifact – fittingly, a photograph of the 100,000th Fordson Tractor. See the entire digital collection that includes an expert set on racing with 50 wonderful items across numerous decades.
“Digitization has opened our doors to guests far beyond what we could have ever imagined,” said Patricia Mooradian, president and CEO of The Henry Ford. “People can now view the Rosa Parks bus, the Wright Cycle Shop or Edison’s Menlo Park Laboratory from anywhere in the world at any time they choose.”
The expansion of digital channels over the past decade has expanded access to the significant stories housed within its collection. According to the Pew Research Center, at the time when The Henry Ford started to digitize its collection, one-quarter of Americans did not use the Internet, only 4 of 10 Americans participated in social media, and the American smartphone was just starting to take off. In the last 18 months alone, however, online visitors have viewed The Henry Ford’s digitized artifact pages more than one million times.
With over 26 million artifacts in its collection, The Henry Ford still has many more milestones ahead. Its 16-week closure and reduced operations have presented the organization with unprecedented financial challenges, so donations are welcome.