December 23, 2013
Hill Museum & Manuscript Library Returns to Mali to
Digitize Manuscripts from Timbuktu Library
COLLEGEVILLE, Minn. – The Rev. Columba Stewart, OSB, executive director of the Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, and his team have returned to Bamako, Mali, where he and his team set up two digitizing studios and conducted training sessions for local librarians who will begin digitizing thousands of historic manuscripts that were smuggled out of Timbuktu earlier this year.
The flight of these manuscripts was driven by radical Islamist invaders, who threatened to destroy works they considered to be in conflict with strict Islamic teachings. During their 10-month occupation of Timbuktu, the rebels carried out a campaign of assault on the city’s historic monuments, shrines and religious sites.
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The Hill Museum & Manuscript Library in Collegeville, Minnesota, preserves handwritten manuscripts around the world and makes the digital images freely available in an effort to understand and protect the history of humanity.