South Asian American Digital Archive

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
South Asian American Digital Archive
SAADA logo
Country United States of America
Type Digital Library
Established 2008
Location Pennsylvania
Items collected letters, photographs, newspapers, magazines, videos, websites, etc.
Size over 2,000 items digitized
Access and use
Access requirements Open to anyone
Other information
Director Samip Mallick

The South Asian American Digital Archive (SAADA) is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization with a mission to create a more inclusive society by giving voice to South Asian Americans through documenting, preserving, and sharing stories that represent their unique and diverse experiences.


SAADA was established in 2008 to preserve, document, and share the relatively unknown history of the South Asian American experience. SAADA is the only digital repository for materials related to the South Asian community in the United States. SAADA’s digital-only approach to archives presents a major re-conceptualization of traditional archival functions. In this innovative, “post-custodial” approach to archives, original archival documents remain with the institutions or individuals from which they originate, while digital access copies are available online.[1][2] In the summer of 2012, the archive added a visual browsing mode, allowing visitors to browse the archive without needing to choose any certain subject, source, time period, etc.

Organizational structure[edit]

SAADA is a 501(c)3 recognized not-for-profit organization registered in Illinois. Financial support is provided primarily through individual donations with some grant funding. During the summer of 2012, SAADA launched a fundraising campaign entitled "Foundation for the Future". The campaign's purpose is to create a sustainable organization to raise awareness and preserve the historical and cultural stories of the South Asian American community.

Members of the SAADA Board of Directors are:

  • Pawan Dhingra [President]
  • Sindya Bhanoo [Secretary]
  • Nidhi Kohli [Treasurer]
  • Samip Mallick
  • Emily McNish
  • Seema Sohi


SAADA Homepage

SAADA's Collection Development Policy defines South Asian American to include all those who trace their heritage to Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and the many South Asian diaspora communities across the globe. The archive collects digital files of materials in all formats that relate to the diverse history of South Asians in the United States, including written documents, newspapers, photographs, audio and video recordings, oral histories, pamphlets, websites, and digital files.[3]

SAADA strives to create collections that reflect the full spectrum of South Asian American experiences with particular interest given to:

  • Pre-1965 immigrants and visitors
  • The Bellingham Riots
  • South Asian American political involvement and activism
  • Professional associations and labor organizations
  • Regional and community organizations
  • Religious organizations and places of worship
  • Community newspapers
  • Student organizations
  • Prominent South Asian American artists, filmmakers, writers, musicians and intellectuals

Current SAADA collections include materials about Dalip Singh Saund, the first congressperson of Indian heritage, the Gadar Party, Fazlur Rahman Khan, Bhai Bhagwan Sing Gyanee and the Kerala Catholic Association of Southeast Michigan.

See also[edit]


Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]