This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience. By clicking or navigating the site you agree to allow our collection of information through cookies. More info

2 minutes to read Posted on Thursday November 9, 2017

Updated on Monday November 6, 2023

portrait of Adrian Murphy

Adrian Murphy

Europeana Collections Manager , Europeana Foundation

Contribute your collections on Europe’s migration heritage

Europeana is building up a new thematic collection dedicated to migration to, from, and within Europe. Learn more and get involved!

Looking at migration to and from Europe historically, Europeana aims to show that the geographical moving of people makes culture richer, and that migration is intrinsic to what it means to be European, on a societal and personal level. These migration movements helped develop human societies, cultures and civilizations across and within borders, as well as defining the personal histories of our own families.

Painting 'Vluchtelinge' by John Macallan Swan
Vluchtelinge, 1870 - 1910. John Macallan Swan. Rijksmuseum, public domain

A work-in-progress throughout 2018

Europeana Migration will bring together collections dedicated to the theme of migration to, from and within Europe. An alpha version can be found here, already gathering just under 200,000 documents from more than 750 museums, galleries, libraries, audio-visual archives and archives across Europe. Throughout 2018, our intention is to build this collection by improving and adding content from cultural heritage institutions across Europe.

The official launch of Europeana Migration will be accompanied by a series of promotional and participatory activities throughout 2018, in line with the European Year of Cultural Heritage. These events held in several European countries will focus on the ways migration has helped to shape European cultural heritage.

Ellis Island
Emigrants at Ellis Island, 1913. Rol [photographic agency]. Bibliothèque nationale de France, public domain

Creating centralised access to migration related collections

New content will be sourced and digitised via partners in the Migration in the arts and sciences project, dedicated migration museums, our network of existing Europeana data providers, and new providers. The collection will bring together audiovisual material, archival content and textual collections. It will be the first time that these collections relating to migration will be gathered in one platform.

During a preparatory phase in October, we surveyed users from our target markets: the results showed that users want access to documentary evidence, material culture, and personal stories that relate to migration. These could be photographs, diaries, artworks, posters, objects, artefacts, passports, postcards, diagrams, letters and more objects reflecting the migration movements that have occurred in Europe over many centuries. More specific information and guidance on how to prepare data for this thematic collection has been added to the Publishing Guide.

A postcard sent from an immigrant in the United States to relatives and friends in Norway
A postcard sent from an immigrant in the United States to relatives and friends in Norway. Finnmark Fylkesbibliotek, public domain

Get in touch

As we build the collection throughout 2018, Europeana Migration aims to gather a wide variety of migration heritage stories and collections from across Europe. Does your organisation hold collections relating to migration? If so, we want to hear from you! Please contact Adrian Murphy or your Europeana aggregator.