New integrated search enhances access to Library and Museum collections

The Princeton University Library and Princeton University Art Museum have launched an integrated discovery capability allowing users to search both institutions’ collections from a unified location.

Visitors conducting searches on the Library website will now see objects from the Museum’s collections included in the search results, along with other various topic-related Library holdings such as books, journals, archives, maps and geographic collections, digital collections, and databases. For example, a search for “Monet” brings up over 2,000 items from the Library catalog along with nineteen objects from the Museum’s collection, including the French painter’s renowned Water Lilies and Japanese Bridge.

“This service is both an asset to our patron community as well as a testament to the quality of work our respective cataloging and IT teams have performed over the last several years," said Jon Stroop, Director of Library IT and Metadata Services. The new interface provides an excellent point of entry for users who are trying to get a general sense of these two vast collections. Plans are in place for additional enhancements to the joint search capability, including the integration of Library results in searches conducted from the Museum website later this year according to Cathryn Goodwin, Manager of Museum Collections Information. The partners are also discussing shared digital collections and sharing digital images across repositories.

The Museum’s contributions to this project were made possible in large part through its ongoing Collections Discovery Initiative, which began in 2015 and has focused on cataloging and infrastructure that built the foundation for data services like the integrated search function. These efforts continue today through the generous support of the University’s Office of the Provost and grants provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Sciences, and the Mellon Foundation. 

Read the full press release here