The Ohio State University Alumni Association

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Memories at your fingertips

How to make the most of the newly digitized alumni magazine

Ohio State memories, genealogy resources and stories about classmates are now just a few keystrokes away, no matter where you are in the world. Type in search terms — visitors have tried out “stadium ghost” and “royalty on campus,” for instance — and be rewarded with a trip down memory lane via scanned pages of the magazine. It’s a technological leap forward for this treasure trove of stories and photographs.

“Years ago, the alumni association created 3-by-5 cards that listed very basic information about the articles in the alumni magazine,” University Archivist Tamar Chute says. “In 1992, we switched it to a database that staff could access. That was OK, but we realized patrons could do a lot of the work themselves — and maybe better — if the articles were digitized and searchable.”

Michelle Drobik, reference archivist, and Halle Mares, archives program assistant, offer the following insider tips to making your search of the Ohio State Publication Archives more efficient and productive.

Refine carefully

“If you are looking for articles specifically about Ohio Stadium, for example, but you don’t want sports, you can exclude the word football,” Mares says. Similarly, if you are searching for articles about Mirror Lake, you can use the “exact word or phrase” option to yield more relevant results than the “any of these words” search would produce.

Limit the date range

Use the “refine” option to narrow your search to a specific year, month or even day.

Keep or share what you find

Click the star at the bottom of any article summary you want to return to later. “Then, when you are finished searching, you can go to the ‘My Collection’ tab and email yourself links to those particular articles,” Drobik says. Be aware, adds Mares, that the “My Collection” feature will not save from one session to another, so be sure to email, print or share your articles on social media before you exit the website.

Decide what you want to see

The “show” feature at the top of the results page lets you search articles or advertisements or even photographs. You also can use the “page” option on the upper right to view the item within its context on the entire page.

Know where to search

The digital archive default is set to search past issues of both the Lantern and the Ohio State Alumni Magazine simultaneously. To search only one of these publications, click on the “All Titles” drop-down menu and uncheck a box.

One of the coolest things about being able to search the alumni magazine’s archives online is browsing the covers. They’re one-page time capsules sketched in photography and typography, each element telling a little bit of a story. We had a blast looking at covers — and had a hard time selecting just a few to share here. Enjoy!