Truman Library in Independence joins YouTube to modernize president’s history

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INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — The Truman Presidential Library and Museum is jumping on YouTube to get more people interested in the past.

The presidential library in Independence launched a YouTube channel at the end of March.

“Our goal is to make sure we have material digitized that can go online,” archivist Lori Austin said. “And then that it’s well-described so that people can find it.”

Austin started working at the Truman Presidential Library a year ago. During that time she digitized and is now uploading key moments of Truman’s presidency to the library’s new YouTube channel.

There’s a team of volunteers who work with Austin so she can dedicate as much time as possible to the YouTube project.

But it’s a huge job. According to Austin, there’s more than 325,000 feet of old film to review.

“You start with the film. You have either 35-mm, 16-mm film usually.” Austin said. “To get a good copy of that film we usually send that out to a lab to digitize them.”

Some of the video will never make it onto YouTube because of copyrights. But the Truman Library wants to upload as much as possible to allow others to learn about the importance of Harry Truman’s presidency.

“We want people to learn about President Truman and to understand the history of his time. He was so important to this country,” Austin said. “We want the public to know that history and to be able to discover that wherever they are.”

In less than a month, more than 120 people have subscribed to the library’s YouTube channel.

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