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Have Some Time?

Click Here to link to Smithsonian Transcription Volunteering

Remarkable as it seems, Smithsonian is in need of help transcribing historic documents. Your help. And you can do it from home whenever you like, as much or as little as you have time.

When I think of Smithsonian’s holdings, the final scene from Raiders of the Lost Arc quickly comes to mind.  Many documents were created during times when handwriting was the central form of preserving thoughts. Diaries, lab notes, log books, just about anything you can think of is in their archives. They have initiated a project, with some very clean software, providing a handy platform for transcribing pages of a document of your choice.

Once you are on their web site, Smithsonian provides you with a list of themes and projects within the theme. Mine was under the American Experience theme. The document concerned itself with notes from an artists detailing the influences and progress being made creating an artwork. One page is done at a time and there is an option for only focusing on a portion of a page, so massive time investment isn’t warranted. The guidelines for how to transcribe are there and it is a quick read.

After you’ve started, you’ll see the scanned version of the actual document page on the left. To the immediate right you’ll find the space where you enter in your transcription. Transcription not your thing, then pick a page and proof it.  Any help is appreciated and you’ve help provide digital access to part of history.

Give it a try. Spend ten minutes here or there on something of interest to you. Who knows, you just may find an entirely new hobby.  The link is at the top of this post. Good luck and let us know your experience.

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