106.3WORD: Digitizing Federal Civil War Documents. “One of the Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum’s most popular collections used by Civil War researchers will soon be available online — but it’s going to take some time. The South Carolina State Library is working with the Relic Room to scan and digitize hundreds of documents from the Colin J. McRae Papers, Huse Audit Series. Huse was a Confederate purchasing agent for the breakaway states’ Ordinance Department in Britain.” About 170 documents have been put online so far.
Library of Congress: New Online: The Man Who Would Not Let History Forget Him. “Robert Lansing spent the height of his career in the shadow of giants but left a paper trail that ensured the world would know his side of the story. Now the Library of Congress has made an important segment of former Secretary of State Robert Lansing’s papers available online.”
New York Times: How to Preserve Your Family Memories, Letters and Trinkets. “Recently, someone wrote to Mary Oey, a conservator at the Library of Congress, asking for help archiving her father’s personal papers. He was a Holocaust survivor, and he had used his diaries and papers as primary sources to teach schoolchildren about his experience. He had laminated them to keep them safe, and — Ms. Oey gave a mournful sigh as she told this story — lamination is a terrible way to preserve documents. There was no way to save this patron’s history.”
RTE: Digital project to recreate public record office destroyed by fire. “A project is under way to digitally recreate the building and contents of the Public Record Office of Ireland, which were destroyed by an explosion and fire at Dublin’s Four Courts in 1922. The six-storey Victorian building went up in flames on 30 June 1922 during the Civil War.”
Undark: In ToxicDocs.org, a Treasure Trove of Industry Secrets . “The site officially launched last Friday with an initial 20 million pages of material focused on six toxic substances: asbestos, benzene, lead, polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB), polyvinyl chloride, and silica, and millions more pages are coming.” The whole article is worth a read; in particular, the problems solved to process five million pages of documents with OCR. “A recent batch of about 1.5 million pages only required about three days to convert to OCR.” Yow!
State Archives of North Carolina: New Siler City Veteran’s Vietnam War Collection Available. “The Grover M. Johnson Jr. Papers is composed of correspondence, photographs, 35mm and 126 Format color slides, and miscellaneous materials, documenting the U.S. Army service of Grover M. Johnson Jr. of Siler City, N.C., during the Vietnam War from November 1966 to October 1968. He served for several months in the 569th General Supply Company at the U.S. Army’s Camp Davies, just outside of Saigon, Republic of Vietnam. For most of his overseas service during the war, Johnson Jr. served on Okinawa in the Headquarters Company at Headquarters, U.S. Army Ryukyu Islands (USARYIS).”
University of Virginia: Digital Social Network Linking The Living And The Dead Expands. “The Social Networks and Archival Context, or SNAC… aims to blow open the doors of libraries and archives and revolutionize the way primary documents are organized and made accessible. The digital platform addresses the longstanding research challenge of discovering, locating and using historical records stored all over the world. It can show links between the living and the dead, and between individuals, families and organizations, across time and place.”