Canadiana.org is inviting Canadians to browse its rich and distinctive collections to discover rare images, text, and other material related to the history of black Canadians. These items come from the collections of Canada's universities, libraries, archives, and museums. Until recently, much of this material would have only been available to those able to visit the often dusty shelves of rare book departments and libraries. Other items would have been packed away in storage rooms and not available to the public at all. Digitization has completely changed this.
Digitization is the conversion of print or other analog content into digital format. This process is transforming our ability to access Canada's documentary heritage. Many of Canada's cultural institutions are digitizing parts of their collections and making them available over the internet. Others, like Library and Archives Canada, are undertaking massive projects to digitize a large portion of their collections. The full significance of having such unprecedented access to our heritage content is still unknown. However, already, digitization is making it much easier for those researching their own genealogy; writing essays for school; or conducting in-depth academic research.