Wikipedia:Meetup/Boston/Public Domain Day 2019

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Join us to celebrate Public Domain Day and Wikipedia's 18th Birthday at the Public Domain edit-a-thon at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology on January 15, 2019!

Boston in 1923
MIT Aviation classroom in 1918
MIT Aviation classroom in 1918

Join the MIT Libraries during IAP for a Public Domain-themed Wikipedia edit-a-thon! January 1st is Public Domain Day – the day when works published in 1923 go out of copyright in the United States and enter the public domain, making them available for anyone to reuse and remix. This is the first time in twenty years that new published works have entered the public domain! To celebrate, the MIT Libraries are digitizing 100 works from 1923 selected from our collections. Because they are now out of copyright, we can freely use images and text from these works on Wikipedia and other open licensed projects.

Join us to explore these digitized works and learn how to contribute to Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. What did engineering education look like in the 1920s at MIT? (Did you know there was once a food science program here?) Want to explore state of the art scientific instruments from 100 years ago? What about novels and poems from classic authors?

We’ll introduce the works and give you an introduction to editing Wikipedia and ideas for topics to work on, or bring our own topics. No prior Wikipedia experience is required. We will have support from experienced Wikipedia editors and librarians, as well as snacks and pizza. Join us for an afternoon devoted to exploring engineering in the Jazz Age and contributing to the world’s largest reference work.

We will combine this with an event to celebrate Wikipedia's 18th Birthday! Wikipedia was founded on January 15, 2001. We'll have pizza and cake into the evening to celebrate. Wikipedians old and new are invited to attend.

Please join us for any portion of the event, but do register here or list yourself below so we have an accurate count for lunch.

What: Public Domain Day Edit-a-thon

When: January 15, 2019, 3-6pm

Where: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA, 14N-132 (building 14, Room 132 - the library computer classroom).

What to bring: bring your laptop. Training and snacks will be provided. Drop in anytime.


  • 3:00p - get settled, sign up for accounts
  • 3:15p - welcome to the MIT Libraries and public domain day, about the MIT public domain books
  • 3:30p - split into editing groups and training
  • 4:00p-5:00p - editing!
  • 5:00p+ - Happy birthday Wikipedia! Keep editing, cake

To work on[edit]

100 public domain books digitized in the Internet Archive

  • Group: Work on images and add them to Commons
  • How to directions
  • extract images from books, upload them to commons
  • add covers to category pages
  • add metadata and categories
Books with Images Signup Category
The Encyclopedia of Food ChiaLynn (talk) 20:42, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:The Encyclopedia of Food
Glass, Paints, Varnishes and Brushes: Their History, Manufacturer and Use Category:Glass, Paints, Varnishes and Brushes (book)
Military Science and Tactics Category:Military Science and Tactics (book)
Wonders of the Past: The Romance of Antiquity and its Splendours KitsuneNovo (Fox Baudelaire) (talk) 21:09, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:Wonders of the Past
Woman's World County Hand Book on National Distribution Category:Woman's world county hand book on national distribution
Report of the Joint New England Railroad Committee… Category:Report of the Joint New England Railroad Committee 1923
Thumb Tack Club, Third Annual Architectural Exhibition Category:Detroit Institute of Art third annual architectural exhibition
The Tomb of Tut-ankh-Amen Category:The tomb of Tut-ankh-Amen
Manual of Physical Training, Games, and Mass Competitions Category:Manual of physical training, games, and mass competitions
The Outline of History; Being a Plain History of Life and Mankind kbz (section 1) Category:The outline of history - being a plain history of life and mankind (1923).

See for example 1920 category - Category:The outline of history - being a plain history of life and mankind (1920)

A Journey to India, 1921-1922 Category:A journey to India, 1921-1922
King's Book of Hawaiian Melodies tokamoto Category:King's book of Hawaiian melodies
Edinburgh hkbf Category:Edinburgh (book)

Also see Category:Images from Edinburgh: Picturesque Notes

The Atom and the Bohr Theory of its Structure: An Elementary Presentation Lxz1331 Category:The atom and the Bohr theory of its structure
The Barometer as the Foot Rule of the Air Pacew (talk) 22:54, 15 January 2019 (UTC) (added one image, but not working on it now) Category:The barometer as the foot rule of the air
Geological Research in Kentucky. Category:Geological research in Kentucky (1923)
Practical Electro-Plating Category:Practical electro-plating (book)
Modern Radio Practice Category:Modern radio practice (book)
Report of the Bronx Parkway Commission EllenLibrarian (talk) 20:41, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:Report of the Bronx Parkway Commission
Twenty-Fifth Anniversary Book. Class of '98, MIT Category:Twenty-fifth anniversary book. Class of '98, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The Welding Encyclopedia Siarus1074 (talk) 20:49, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:The welding encyclopedia
The Color of a Great City Category:The color of a great city
Hartness Flat Turret Lathe Manual MarkNahabedian Category:Hartness flat turret lathe manual : a hand book for operators, 1923
The Italian Lakes Blackoxide (talk) 20:44, 15 January 2019 (UTC) need to work on rotating images Category:The Italian lakes: Maggiore, Como, Orta, Varese, Lugano, Iseo, Garda (book)
Manual de Química Experimental Category:Manual de qum̕ica experimental
School Hygiene Ctanguay (talk) 20:51, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:School hygiene (1923)
MIT, Cambridge, Mass.: Plans of Court and Future Development Category:Massachusetts Institute of Technology: plans of court and future development
Motion Picture and Stereopticon Projection with Mazda Lamps Xplorecre84give (talk) 20:44, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:Motion picture and stereopticon projection with Mazda lamps
Industrial Alcohol Gkuriger (talk) 20:41, 15 January 2019 (UTC) Category:Industrial alcohol (book)
The Rochester City Plan Category:The Rochester city plan, a report of the organization and operation of the City Planning Bureau of Rochester, N.Y. for 1918-1922
  • Group: Work on Wikipedia articles
  • Group: Go through public domain books and figure out what Wikipedia articles they could relate to
  • list ideas here!
  • Group: Wikidata editing - make items for each book

What we did[edit]

and why we did it

I made my first logged-in Wikipedia edits, grammar updates to Matheus & Kauan in order to improve readability.

Added a more concise introduction to OSS Deer Team.

Updated Paul English to cover events since 2016, including his new startup.

Also made first logged-in edits, grammar corrections and context clarifications to Pune Junction railway station

Draco309 made minor changes to the page for Edinburgh: Picturesque Notes.

Participant List[edit]

Register for event at MIT Libraries