CVL Collections: 2023 in Review

Three librarians pose with books at the Arvada Library
“Murrell Gill, librarian, and two other women at the Arvada Library, 1940s-1950s,” accessed 1/4/24 from the Arvada Historical Society Digital Collection

Since 2016, the CVL Collections program has been helping organizations in Colorado (and now Wyoming!) share their unique historic collections online with their communities and with the Digital Public Library of America. Learn more about CVL Collections and Omeka, the open-source content management system that makes the program possible, on our website,

As the CVL Collections program manager, I wanted to share a snapshot of our year in 2023. There’s a lot to celebrate!

Growth & Participation

The program grew steadily in 2023, adding 4 new partner organizations, which brings our total to 19 members with an additional 5 in the development process. Outreach to Wyoming proved effective, as we now have one academic library live in Omeka and another in the pipeline.

Our partners represent a variety of organization types, including:

  • Public libraries
  • Academic libraries
  • Special libraries
  • Government libraries
  • Archives & historical societies
  • Other organizations with special collections

You can see all of our partners and find links to their Omeka sites on the CVL Collections Current Participants page.

Members continue to show a high rate of satisfaction with the program, as reported in our annual survey. One response captured the essence of why this program exists:

If it weren’t for this program, we would likely not have digital collections. With a small staff, it is hard to do everything and especially hard to manage digital collections with no IT staff. CSL/CVL Staff has eliminated this barrier and made it possible for us to have digital collections and get over any hurdles in the way. We really, really appreciate this program!

Infrastructure & Sharing

Man operating machinery at Vallecito Dam Construction Site
“Man at Vallecito Dam Construction Site,” accessed 1/4/24 from Pine River Library Digital Archive

The Omeka infrastructure is supported and maintained by our tremendous technology staff members, Babi Hammond and Dave Hodgins. They help keep Omeka running with the latest server technology and software updates. Recently, Babi has been upgrading Omeka sites to ensure that they are in compliance with HB-1110, the state accessibility law that goes into effect on July 1, 2024.

Midway through the year we were able to raise the free storage tier from 2GB to 10GB, which means that the majority of our partners participate at no cost—and with more free storage it also means that they can share even more content with their communities.

Speaking of sharing: as of January 2024, our partners are sharing over 14,400 digital objects online through Omeka and 9,178 objects with the Digital Public Library of America through their participation in the Plains to Peaks Collective, the Colorado-Wyoming Hub of the DPLA. It’s exciting to see CVL Collections represented alongside large organizations like the Smithsonian Institution and HathiTrust.

Looking Forward to 2024

Grace Austin Goodrich poses with fish she caught
“Grace Austin Goodrich,” accessed 1/4/24 from Casper College, Goodstein Foundation Library Western History Center Digital Collections

I want to thank our current CVL Collections partners for their continued participation and support of the program. I am excited to see how the program will continue to grow in 2024, especially as we expand into Wyoming.

If you’re interested in learning more about CVL Collections, please watch this short informational video or contact me with your questions at I look forward to hearing from you!

Amy Hitchner
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