Tag Archives: archive

The biggest libraries in the world are in Europe, North America, and Russia


Even though the world is quickly moving to digital information, libraries will have an important role in the future as well. Information can easily be transferred via the Internet, ebooks can be loaned from the home town library to the home computer, but the physical place where experts of information (librarians) are ready to help continues to be invaluable.

british library, old books

Old books in British Library.

The oldest and largest libraries have collected books and other documents for centuries, and it shows. The biggest library of the world, the British Library in London has 170 million items in its collections. The second largest, the Library of Congress in Washington DC, US, has archived 158 million items. The third biggest, the Library and Archive Canada in Ottawa has 54 million items.
biggest libraries in the world, instascribe
As one might expect, big countries like the US, UK, France, Germany, Russia, and Japan have the greatest resources to run an operation that requires so much space and expertise as a big library or archive requires. Yet, two small Scandinavian countries, Denmark and Sweden, have libraries that take them to the top 20 list of the world’s biggest libraries. Here is the full top 20 list.
biggest libraries in the world by instascribe
Infographic by Instascribe.

Doing research for a book? A vast newsreel video archive can help you


Traditionally, authors doing research for their books visited a library or an archive in order to collect information on the topic of the book. Then, (fortunately) the world-wide-web and the Internet brought vast amounts of information (and misinformation) directly to authors’ desks. It only gets better: news organizations that have reported more than hundred years about the events of the world have opened their video news archives on YouTube.
british movietone newsreel archive, titanic
The Associated Press and British Movietone have posted more than 1 million minutes of digitized film footage to YouTube. The moments, people and events that shaped the world can be explored at the comfort of researcher’s own desk. The YouTube channels include more than 550,000 video stories dating from 1895 to the present day.

British Movietone’s newsreel archive spans the period 1895 – 1986. Shot on 35mm film, this archive contains many of the world’s iconic images, news events, celebrities, sports, music, social history, science, lifestyle and funny moments.

British Movietone news video archive.
Recent events can be viewed at AP’s YouTube channel.