From Archival Sources to Computational Analysis, Part Two

by Megan Brett, Megan Mitchell

In our last post, we explained how we used Tropy to organize photographs of bound bills into items, concluding with the export of the item metadata using the Tropy CSV Export plugin. This post covers the other part of the process of going from digital images to items in a datascribe item set. If you look at the workflow image, we’ll be describing work that takes place in the “Image Processing and CSV Creation” and “Omeka S Item Creation” areas.

From Archival Sources to Computational Analysis, Part One

by Megan Brett, Megan Mitchell

Have you ever wondered how a complex project like Death by Numbers comes together? This post is the first in a series about the workflow that takes us from archival sources to transcriptions formatted for computational analysis. Let’s begin with digitization. Figure 1. diagram of image preparation workflow showing process from digitization to image processing and CSV creation to omeka s item creation to datascribe transcription. Digitization of Original Documents There are many ways historic documents become digital objects, and the BoM project is built on documents from a variety of sources.

7 Problems to Expect when You're Transcribing Historical Data and How to Avoid Them

by Dan Howlett, Emily Meyers

So you want to start transcribing data from historical documents? The task seems easy! However, there are quite a few issues that can pop up which can create problems for other parts of the project. Below are some of the expected errors our transcribers on Death By Numbers frequently run into and some tips on how to handle them. The job may sound intimidating with all the potential pitfalls, but we have suggested solutions from all the tips and tricks our team has picked up over the past few months.

A Parish By Any Other Name

by Megan Brett, Jessica Otis

The Bill of Mortality from Christmas week in 1664 reports that three people died in the parish of St Foster. But fifty years later, there were happily no Christmas deaths in the parish of St Vedast—or rather, the parish of “St Vedast alias Foster.” Because the parish of St Vedast is the parish of St Foster. Welcome to the complex world of early modern parish names. Given that our sources were published over the course of centuries, it’s hardly surprising that the names of some of the parishes in the bills changed over time.