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ARCHIVES Home

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ARCHIVES  April 1995, Week 4

ARCHIVES April 1995, Week 4

Subject:

scanning finding aids

From:

Roy Webb <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Archives & Archivists <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Mon, 24 Apr 1995 12:21:16 MDT

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (44 lines)

We also tried scanning our old, typed finding aids in the
Manuscripts Div., Marriott Library Special Collections.  I did
as much as I could, even though we didn't (and still don't)
have our own scanner. We always kept a super-clean typed
original copy of the finding aids, for later photocopying.  Some
of them were in Prestige Elite and some in Courier 10 typeface.
These actually scanned quite well; I used a scanner down in the
student computing center (the only one in the building) that was
pretty high quality but fragile; it finally gave up its
electronic ghost altogether before I could do more than about
twenty of the finding aids, and by the time it was replaced
(Low- Bid U!) I had moved on to other things.
 
I scanned the documents as ascii files, then converted them into
WordPerfect 5.1 just using the conversion in WP.  Then I used
the spell checker in WP to look for scanning errors, which
worked quite well.  It was a lot faster than re-typing them and
we don't have the budget to support that anyway.
 
The motivation was twofold: to get the typed registers/finding
aids into digital format, and to then use the indexes to the
finding aids in what we grandly styled our Master Index.  This
is simply a series of WordPerfect files arranged alphabetically
(A, Ba-Be, Bf-Bz, Ca-Ch, and so on), with the indexes from as
many registers as we could add integrated and sorted
alphabetically.  I had already done all those that were already
in digital form, and wanted to add those pre-computer ones by
scanning them.  Before adding an index to the MI, I would
manipulate it by making sure the subject headings were
consistent (i.e. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Saints or LDS
Church or Mormon Church), taking out any indents/tabs/other
fancy formating, and adding the collection number to the end of
each entry.  Then when the indexes are combined and sorted, you
get a cross reference to every collection in the MI that has
your subject.  This index is actually available on the Marriott
Library gopher, which address I don't have in front of me but
can find if anyone is interested.  It only represents about 20%
of our collection though.
 
Roy
Roy Webb, Audio-Visual Archivist
Marriott Library Special Collections
University of Utah   (801) 581-8864
[log in to unmask]

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