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UNLV University Libraries Presents Digital Archive of Student Newspaper, The Rebel Yell

The UNLV University Libraries Digital Collections provide online access to unique images, documents, and more. This spring, Digital Collections is rolling out the digital archive of UNLV’s student newspaper, The Rebel Yell.

This project captures over 30,000 pages of The Rebel Yell from its inaugural issue in 1956 through 2010, at which point it went online and is available on its own website with its own digital archive.

The Rebel Yell Digital Collection provides access to the entire run of the paper including full text transcription of all articles, captions of photos, an “On This Day in History” feature, a date slider, and article segmentation. Article segmentation is a feature that allows users to search items, retrieve results, and then clip articles for reading or research. A single article can be clipped with just one click—even if the article spans multiple pages. 

It was a complex project. We ended up scanning from microfilm and from hard copy newspapers," said Cory Lampert, head of digital collections. In total, 30,000 pages were digitized in high resolution and OCR, a technique that makes it possible to word search the text of each page.


A sampling of a few interesting pieces of history from The Rebel Yell Digital Collection. From left: May 4, 1977--As UNLVino celebrated its 40th anniversary in April, the "take a sip for a scholarship" tagline goes back at least 37 years when admission was $4. February 16, 1995--The Rebel Yell announced the appointment of UNLV's first woman president, Carol Harter. Click on the image to link to the full issue of The Rebel Yell.  

"The Rebel Yell is a record of student activities, interests and concerns. It is a very good resource for people who are researching the activities of the university, how students reacted to world events, and the popular culture of the times,” Lampert added.

This digitization project was made possible through funding from several sources including a grant from the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and financial support from two UNLV Student Organizations, The Consolidated Students of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (CSUN), and the UNLV Graduate & Professional Student Association (GPSA).

From left: March 16, 1956--the announcement of a $20,000 allotment for the first library. October 21, 1988--a prank against CSUN nearly leads to a fraternity's official recognition renounced. Celebrity chef and UNLV alumnus Guy Fieri, known as a student at the time as Guy Ferry, and a fellow frat brother were at the forefront of the prank. Click on the image to link to the full issue of The Rebel Yell.

The Libraries contributed in-kind work by managing the three-phase digitization process, merging metadata into one seamless collection, designing the web portal, and utilizing Drupal to launch the site.

Since 2006, Digital Collections has made the Libraries’ unique special collections accessible to users around the world. Seventeen collections comprising nearly 50,000 items are presently available online, with 200,000 unique visitors accessing the site annually.

Now you can check out Digital Collections while you are on the go! Search and view the Digital Collections optimized for mobile devices. Search “UNLV” or “UNLV Digital” in the App Store and download the free “D-Lib@UNLV” app. More than 20,914 digital objects are available to be searched and viewed. The app allows users to browse a digital collection, search all or one of the collections by keyword, and add objects to a favorites list.