Volunteers Can Help N.C. State Archives Transcribe Archival Records at Home

Pittman journal

The State Archives of North Carolina needs volunteers to spend time at home helping to transcribe archival records through its “Transcribe NC” project.

Volunteers can help improve access to historic documents by transcribing lists, forms, diaries, letters, and other materials from the collections of the State Archives of North Carolina. Some projects will include current or future additions to the North Carolina Digital Collections, while others focus on indexes to be added to the online catalog

“Transcribe NC” is recruiting volunteers to transcribe World War I letters and diaries, local draft board records from World War I, a collection of letters related to N.C. women’s history, and the travel writings of those North Carolinians fortunate to travel the nation and the world. The travel collection is a group of images, diaries, journals, and scrapbooks. This project will require a word-by-word transcription of those who traveled around the U.S. and abroad for pleasure.

The transcription of draft board records is more straightforward, recording the names of enlisted and drafted soldiers who served in World War I, along with their age, race, and hometown. These elements will be entered into a database searchable online through the State Archives’ website. There are some selected letters and soldiers’ diaries in this collection as well.

“This project is critical to telling North Carolina’s story,” says Randon McCrea, digital archivist for online programming, who is heading this initiative, along with archivist Anna Peitzman, at the State Archives. “Each of these archival collections personalize the human experience and keep this state’s legacy alive, while providing invaluable material for researchers and historians.”

If you would like to take this opportunity to volunteer and add to the state’s knowledge, visit the project’s webpage for instructions and tips for transcription, a guide, and an instructional video. You also may send a message to archives.webedit@ncdcr.gov for more information.

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