Article provided by National Library Board

How is National Library different from National Library Board?

National Library at Victoria Street
The National Library building at Victoria Street. PHOTO: NATIONAL LIBRARY BOARD

Many people think the National Library and the National Library Board (NLB) are the same thing, but they’re not. NLB is actually a statutory board that is made up of three main parts: Public libraries, the National Library, and the National Archives of Singapore.

The public libraries are the lending libraries, while the National Archives preserves materials in various forms. The National Library is in fact the Lee Kong Chian Reference Library, which preserves content of Singapore’s published heritage.

The main roles of the National Library include archiving – that is, collecting and preserving knowledge about Singapore – and also making the nation’s heritage and history accessible to the public. To do this, the National Library digitises its materials and holds regular exhibitions. This provides easy access to its collections, raises awareness of Singapore’s history, and helps Singaporeans develop a deep appreciation of their nation’s rich heritage.

What's new on MusicSG?

MusicSG is a digital archive by the National Library, that allows you to listen to musical works related to Singapore. With more than 1.2 million tracks, it just keeps growing:

  • Get all nostalgic with “Shanty”, the original hit song by The Quests, one of the biggest local bands of the 1960s. The homegrown band began with cover versions of British and American songs, but went on to produce their own compositions.
  • Remember the haunting tunes of The Awakening (雾锁南洋), one of Singapore’s earliest Chinese dramas? Relive the feelings with songs from the hit 1984 TV series. 
  • You can’t get more Singaporean than with Xinyao (literally, “Singapore songs”), a genre unique to the Lion City, with hits like 太傻, 青春 1, 2, 3, and 星空下.
  • Go back in time with songs by veteran singers Poon Sow Keng (潘秀琼), the “Queen of Alto”, and crooner Huang Qing Yuan, the “Elvis of Singapore”, and you’ll soon discover why the oldies are truly goldies. 

What's new on NewspaperSG?

  • Go mobile: Discover interesting stories of our history with the refreshed NewspaperSG site! - now with a new mobile-friendly interface.
  • This Week in History: Want to know how the biggest stories of the last century – like the day Japanese troops invaded Singapore, and the moment the nation separated from Malaysia – were captured by local newspapers? Check out the front pages of newspapers from yesteryears.
  • New old titles: You’ve seen The Straits Times and The New Paper. But have you read the Comrade, the Indian Daily Mail or the Morning Tribune? How about the Tiger Standard, the Singapore Herald, the Shonan Times, or the Syonan Shimbun Fortnightly? Take a look at these historic newspapers which were once staple reading for Singaporeans.
  • Search Term Visualizer: Track political, business and social news trends by comparing how often a chosen keyword or phrase has appeared in the newspapers over time. You’ll be amazed by what you find. Then share your discoveries on social media.

Presented by