The DRS Project Toolkit is now CERES: Exhibit Toolkit!

The Digital Scholarship Group is pleased to announce that the Digital Repository Service (DRS) Project Toolkit will now be known as CERES: Exhibit Toolkit. CERES is a user-friendly platform with which faculty, staff, and student scholars at Northeastern University are building WordPress exhibits incorporating curated digital objects. This Exhibit Toolkit will be one module in the Community Engaged Repository for Enhanced Scholarship, an ecology of tools that will further support scholars in preserving their scholarly work and publishing it for a variety of public audiences.

CERES: Exhibit Toolkit expands on the original Toolkit’s capability to browse, search, and create exhibits from objects digitized and cataloged in Northeastern’s Digital Repository Service. Projects can now also build maps and timelines for their exhibits that harness objects’ encoded metadata. Objects can also be pulled from the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), as well as the DRS.

We are excited to work with a number of Northeastern projects that submitted proposals to use and provide feedback for further development of CERES: Exhibit Toolkit:

  • Spectrum Literary Magazine is building a Toolkit site to attractively display the issues they already have digitized in the DRS. The students also seek to add to these more recent issues by digitizing the print issues in its archive. They intend to highlight the artistic aspects of each issue in their exhibits; they also intend to extract some of individual poems and art from these individual issues, building exhibits that incorporate works across time periods.
  • Professor Erika Boeckler (English) and her Dragon Prayer Book project are building a Toolkit site to display a rare 15th-century manuscript. Professor Boeckler and her student researchers are building exhibits using individual pages from the manuscript, recently digitized by the Northeast Document Conservation Center (NEDCC) and ingested into the DRS. They intend to replicate the structural features of the book while emphasizing pages with musical annotations or interesting typographical features. They may also catalog these features for further study.
  • Professor Kathleen Kelly (English) and her student researchers on the Thoreau Journal Drawings project are building a Toolkit site to display sketches they have been cataloging from Henry David Thoreau’s journal, foregrounding the drawings’ integral role in the document. The project intends to expand, with the help of a public of Thoreau scholars and enthusiasts, the metadata it has collected so far to include citations to multiple sources, key words, geographic locations, etc. Secured in the DRS, the database of sketches would allow scholars to see patterns in them over time, location, and subject material.
  • Professor Nicole Aljoe (English) will be building an Early Black Boston Digital Almanac. The Almanac Toolkit site will be, in the project’s words, a “public educational resource intended to collect, highlight, and disseminate information” about the “vibrant early African American communities” of 18th and 19th century Boston. Its first exhibits will be authored by students in Professor Aljoe’s ENGL 3375 (Writing Black Boston) course, offered at Northeastern this Fall. In the future, Professor Aljoe intends to collaborate with multiple departments and the public history program, as well as to reach out beyond Northeastern into the greater Boston community.
  • The Civil Rights and Restorative Justice project, a special program in the Northeastern University School of Law, is in the process of digitizing and securing their archive in the DRS and creating a new CRRJ website within the Toolkit framework. Working with NuLawLab, the CRRJ plans to use the Toolkit to provide a place to display materials collected in the field as well as create exhibits on restorative justice cases from across the United States. They are also working with University Archives on the collection and preservation of physical items. Some of the collections and items they are planning to bring into the Toolkit can be seen at

One other project will join the other new DSG initiatives by ingesting materials into repository-based architectures:

  • The John D. O’Bryant African American Institute is ingesting their digital photo archive, comprised of 15K photos of the Black presence on campus from 1968 to present, into the DRS for a possible future Toolkit site. While AAI staff have already done a great deal of work organizing and cataloging these photos, they also intend to eventually to engage AAI alumni in a crowd-sourced identification of people and events depicted in those materials.

The Digital Scholarship Group also continues to support the ongoing work of the Women Writer’s Project, Viral Texts, Digital Humanities Quarterly, TAPAS, and our pilot Toolkit projects. For more information on projects supported by the DSG, please visit our Projects page.

Post by Gregory Palermo, Graduate Research Assistant.

If you would like to contact the DSG, please email us: We are also on Twitter: @NU_DSG.