UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register collects — digitally, I believe — key cultural artifacts from around the world. It’s a little difficult to get a clear sense of how it works — I think its page on Wikipedia is clearer than its own website:
UNESCO’s Memory of the World Programme is an international initiative launched to safeguard the documentary heritage of humanity against collective amnesia, neglect, the ravages of time and climatic conditions, and willful and deliberate destruction. It calls for the preservation of valuable archival holdings, library collections and private individual compendia all over the world for posterity, the reconstitution of dispersed or displaced documentary heritage, and the increased accessibility to and dissemination of these items.
The Register itself can be found here. Considering its wealth of resources and breadth of its collection, its surprisingly user “unfriendly.” One of these days, I hope they work with somebody like Google to really make it much more accessible.
Nevertheless, I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Learning About The World’s Different Cultures.