Help us transcribe 30,000+ pages of the Abraham Lincoln Papers by the end of 2018!
Around half of the digitized Abraham Lincoln Papers, primarily materials written by Lincoln, have been transcribed by other volunteers at Knox College and elsewhere, and are already keyword searchable at loc.gov. The remaining 10,000+ items including letters and other materials sent to him have not yet been transcribed. These include materials by writers ranging from friends and associates from Lincoln’s Springfield days, well-known political figures and reformers, and constituents writing to their president. There's even the occasional document in Lincoln's own hand! Completing the Letters to Lincoln Challenge will make all of the digital Lincoln Papers word-searchable and accessible to future readers. Just imagine the new research that will be possible once we've achieved this goal.
Your Community Managers, reference librarians and curatorial staff here at the Library of Congress will be cheering you on with bonus historical context and resources all along the way, as well as some special rewards for goals met!
Our first challenge milestone is completion of all the material in the first two Campaign projects: "1830-1839, first forays in politics and law" and "1840-1849, marriage, election to Congress" by November 1. Can you transcribe even just one letter and share the challenge with one friend to help push toward our goal? When the project completes we’ll move onto the next exciting decade of Lincoln's life, the 1850s when he returned to politics.
As you dig in to the Letters to Lincoln Campaign, we hope you'll take time to share news of your experiences here on History Hub. What exciting things are your finding? Is this having an impact on your research or the books you're reading for pleasure? What requests did the general public have for Lincoln and how did they make their arguments about the causes that mattered to them? How did his friends address him once he became President? What personal connections can you make to the writers and their subjects? We can’t wait to hear what you learn!