Photos being saved

Unique project to digitize millions of images spanning over 100 years

Photo: Fredrik Hagen / NTB scanpix
Trine Eilertsen, editor-in-chief of Aftenposten, has called the ambitious new photo digitization project “completely unique.”


Twenty-five million images taken by Norwegian photographers during a time period of more than a century will now be digitized. “A unique project,’ said Trine Eilertsen, editor-in-chief of Aftenposten.

NTB’s editor-in-chief, Mads Yngve Storvik, said that the collection is unique in Norway, and likely in Scandinavia.

“It encompasses a broad thematic range: news items, daily life, sports, politics, culture, the royal family, and not least, extensive coverage of World War II,” he said.

NTB manages its own historical photo archive, as well as those of Aftenposten, VG, and Aktuell. Collectively, they comprise Norway’s largest photo collection with around 25 million images that document Norway’s press history. The oldest images are from the end of the 19th century.

Today, only a fraction of the images has been scanned and made available digitally. Even though the collection is securely stored, the images will degrade slowly over time. Therefore, the images will now be digitized to be preserved for the future. The images will be published on the National Library’s website.

Aftenposten and VG also stand behind the digitization project.

“Images are perhaps the strongest documentation we have of the present era. At Aftenposten, we are happy to participate in a cooperative effort that will make the images accessible to so many. This project is completely unique,” said Trine Eilertsen, editor-in-chief of Aftenposten.

Translated by Andy Meyer

This article originally appeared in the Sept. 18, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American.

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NTB (Norsk Telegrambyrå), the Norwegian News Agency, is a press agency and wire service that serves most of the largest Norwegian media outlets. The agency is located in Oslo and has bureaus in Brussels, Belgium, and Tromsø in northern Norway