Be still, our history-and-emoji-loving heart.
We were thrilled when the New York Public Library digitized and released 187,000 high-resolution images from its archive earlier this year.
And now, the NYPL is bringing their digital archive to life again with a darn clever little Twitter bot.
The NYPL Emoji Bot, or @NYPLEmoji, matches any emoji you throw at it on Twitter with a random image from the library’s extensive public domain collection.
For example, give it the doughnut emoji and you'll get back a black and white photo of chocolate doughnuts from the "Collection of Automat Memorabilia".
The whole thing is endlessly delightful. Put in the nail-painting symbol, get out this theatrical design for a “manicure girl” from the early 20th century. A waving hand? You’ll get this 1958 photo of ballerinas Lupe Serrano, Lucia Chase, Nora Kaye and Ruth Ann Koesun waving at Idlewild (now JFK) Airport. Give it the “100” symbol and you’ll get sheet music from 1892 for a song called “She Has $100,000 in Her Name.”
Our personal favorite, the umbrella-in-the-rain emoji aka the Purple Rain emoji, brought back a 1922 ad for “McCallum silk hosiery” with a drawing of a woman in a rainstorm, complete with a purple umbrella.
The bot was created by Lauren Lampasone, an NYPL digital producer, and Leonard Richardson, a software architect for the library, according to a first report by Technical.ly.
Give it a whirl here. And, please, get creative and send something other than the peach or eggplant, OK?