Clio app brings history to life at Marshall


Sage Shavers

Dr. David Trowbridge presents the Clio app before a crowd at Morrow Library on Friday. The interactive app allows smartphone users to observe and preserve historic events in their area by geographic tracking and educates users on the history of their surroundings.

Smart phone users can have history at their fingertips when they use a new app created by Marshall University faculty and librarians.

The Clio app and website uses GPS to guide users through events from the past.

Clio determines the user’s location and connects them to a database of museums, libraries and cultural and historical websites and provides information for each entry based on research.

Entries include the basic history and summary of the historical site along with links to related sources like articles and websites.

The Clio app and website depends on its contributors to add historical sites and research their background.

The project was funded by a Knight News Foundation Prototype grant. The money was used for research, the app and website and paid student internships.

Monica Brooks, Ph.D., assistant vice president of information technology, online learning and libraries,   and David Trowbridge, Ph.D., associate professor of History and director of African and African American Studies, presented the app at Morrow Library on Friday as a part of a month-long series of events to recognize and honor Dr. Carter G. Woodson.

Trowbridge said he created the app when he realized that there were no apps of its kind. Related apps were only focused on making money.

“I got scared of what would happen if I didn’t create it,” Trowbridge said.

Trowbridge believed there was a need for an app that would show people things they didn’t know they wanted to know and said there are many hidden histories on Clio.

“You can’t find this in any city guide.”

The students and faculty at the presentation were pleased with the idea.

Senior journalism student Haley Wade said she thinks the app has potential because it is  unique.

Wade said she likes that entries can include different kinds of media and is inspired that it was made by one man.

The website and app are free to use and anyone with an account can add entries and revisions to be approved.

Sage Shavers can be contacted at [email protected]