Daniel Kipnis, Senior Education Services Librarian at Thomas Jefferson University, found a graceful solution to showcase a collection of letters from the early 1800’s between Jefferson Medical College alumnus John Plimpton Green and his family in Jefferson Digital Commons. Dan appended a transcript of each letter to the archival document before uploading the PDF file into his IR. You can see the original letters, along with their transcriptions, by downloading one of the submissions in the John Plimpton Green Letters series.
The Nuremberg Trials Documents at Digital Commons@LSU Law Center’s presentation of hand-written material shows a different but equally compelling approach. In this collection original material is displayed side-by-side with transcriptions in the PDF viewer for easy comparison.
A third approach for capturing and sharing transcriptions alongside archival letters is to create a “Transcription” metadata field and add the transcribed text there so it is available right on the metadata record. This is what Patricia Schultz and Wendy Stenhouse did at Bryant University, in the WWII 1400-letter collection “Bryant College Goes To War” in DigitalCommons@BryantUniversity. If you have a similar collection and would like assistance in determining which of the three approaches work best for your archival collection, please contact your bepress Consulting Services Representative.