The Attic: Archived, Deprecated and Outdated Items

Here are links to content which is no longer accurate or pertinent to Project Gutenberg, but may be useful to people seeking historical context or background. Readers are also encouraged to visit the email list archives, which include years of emailed newsletters and discussion groups.

Project Gutenberg has its first electronic distribution, by email, in 1971. By the 1980s and early 1990s, the nascent Project Gutenberg collection was being distributed by file transfer, online bulletin board systems, and other mechanisms available at the time.

During that same period, Project Gutenberg’s collection grew. Project Gutenberg’s 100th eBook, released for January 1, 1994, represented increasing maturity of methods for creating eBooks from printed books. Better understanding of copyright, in the digital age, was also emerging. A number of donated contemporary works were also added to the collection.

By the time the 10,000th eBook was released, for March 1, 2006, procedures for creating and distributing Project Gutenberg eBooks were similar to today’s practices. Distributed Proofreaders emerged as the major source of new eBooks for Project Gutenberg, with a mature online platform for crowdsourcing the production of new eBooks. The website, now at, had replaced FTP and older methods for providing information about eBooks.

The organization that supports Project Gutenberg remained small and devoted. In 2001, the Project Gutenberg Literary Archive Foundation was formed. PGLAF is the non-profit corporation that operates and manages Project Gutenberg.

Increased focus on quality control and common procedures helped to improve most of the older ebooks, and give a similar look and feel to the library’s content. In the years since then, there has been more focus on usability for various mobile readers, including mobile phones and tablets. A collection development policy was approved.

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