Spanish/French Items in Roosevelt Campaign Need Transcribing or Review

In the part of the Roosevelt Campaign that I've been working on recently, I've run across a number of pages in Spanish or French that need transcribing or review. I know that some of you enjoy working on these, so here they are:

Theodore Roosevelt Papers: Series 1: Letters and Related Material, 1759-1919; 1906, July 9-Aug. 13

French: mss382990066-705-706, 724-725, 729-732

Spanish: mss382990066--647 thru -651 [NOTE: I have already transcribed these but I can't find a foreign keyboard that works for me.  While reviewing you will need to add tildes and accents. A few of them have been added by someone else.]

I hope I've made this clear. Let me know if you have questions.

  • Thanks!  I will look at the French, and depending on complexity may be able to do some.

    Note that accents are quite easy to add without a specialized keyboard:

    • For Mac/iOS:  hold down the key for the letter in question, and it will bring up all accents possible for that letter.

    I would encourage everyone to add accents and diacritics on first transcription, as that avoids the possibility that someone else may approve the document without them. They are not optional and can change meaning of words entirely.

  • Thanks, Diane. I don't use Word, but luckily the list for Windows works for me anyway. I had tried several things before but couldn't get anything else to work. And you mentioned my fear--that people would approve documents in a foreign language without realizing that the lack of the correct accents and diacritics could change the meaning.

  • Dear Laurie Nelson (and Diane Estes),


    (My name is Ethan Kent (username "EthanFromBellmore" here); I have "met" Diane at History Hub, but I'm not sure that have "met" Laurie N. before.)

    I've been paying attention to some recent posts here concerning French-language and Spanish-language material in the Theodore Roosevelt Papers Campaign, so I noticed Laurie N.'s post's "headline" when I received my weekly notification of new posts from History Hub on Thursday, the 27th.

    (I'm sorry that I have not replied earlier. )

    I would like to say the following about the French-language and Spanish-language texts mentioned by Laurie N.  (which I have all looked at; I have done what work I could with the French-language text in pages 705 & 706):

    1) The French-language text in pages 705 & 706 seems to be a letter from a French (book and periodical) publisher (its name survives in today's Hachette Book Group) -- discussing an article in one of their periodicals (which turns out to be centered on an interview with President Roosevelt -- if you "look ahead" to page proofs of the article (the material seen in Pages 729 to 732).

    I have made those revisions that I could make in the transcriptions of Pages 706 & 706, but I decided to save the transcriptions as "In Progress" rather than "Submit for Review" (although if advised here to do so, I will "Submit for Review").

    The transcriptions are (for now) incomplete as there seems to be shorthand (which I would guess would be French-language shorthand) material in Page 705 which I can do nothing with, and because there old is something unclear handwritten in Page 706's (corporate) "signature" (it looks like"eij", but cannot have been intended to be that (it wouldn't make sense in either French or English); perhaps it is supposed to be "cie". (abbreviation for "Compagnie" in the corporate name)  ) -- but that is by no means perfectly clear (the last letter seems to extend downward, for some reason, and I don't know of "e"s that "do that").

    In short: I have done what I could, but the only further thing that I could possibly do is "Submit for Review" (although I'm not sure who could do anything with the shorthand in Page 705 or the last handwritten bit (quite-possibly an abbreviation) in Page 706.

    2) The 2nd pages-long French-language text (typewritten; a semi-explanation in English at the top of Page 722 calls it a "Newspaper clipping" "from Turkey"; the text goes beyond the description (in French) with the heading "PARTIE FRANCAISE" [sic ( French-language text would have a cedilla under the "C", but it seems that someone at the State Department typed it).

    (This heading would mean "FRENCH PART" or "FRENCH SECTION".]

    This text looks quite interesting (and being typewritten, is even more of interest to me) ; it seems to discuss (heading/title beneath the heading I just cited "Panamericanism. The Monroe Doctrine. American Expansion."

    The transcribed "clipping" actually extends from Page 722 to Page 726.

    (Page 726 is said to have been "Completed" by someone, but I would like for someone to "reopen" the Page for (brief) "Review" -- because a typewritten final "a" in "montrera" (= "will show") was mis-read as an "s", yielding "montrers" (which is not a French-language word).

    Could someone "reopen" the page??)

    The work on these pages should be relatively-straightforward ( the transcriber should be watching out, however, for smudged typewritten letters in reading it).

    3) You are correct, Laurie N., in stating that the next pages-long stretch of French-language text is on Pages 729 to 732 (which contain the page proofs for the article "NOTRE INTERVIEW DU PRÉSIDENT ROOSEVELT" for the periodical "Les Lectures pour Tous" (which I believe was meant to mean approximately "Readings for All" or "Readings for Everyone")... -- which are seen in Page 705 to have been "submitted" for President Roosevelt's review.

    These pages are quite-densely-packed with text (and the text in the various columns doesn't end "neatly" as it would in a published page) -- and there are markings (by someone at the Hachette publishers? by President Roosevelt himself?) which I see in some places in the right margins which are a bit difficult to decipher (not least whether marks to the left of comments are to be read as "1" or as "/").

    (It's not clear to me exactly which parts of the proofs text each refers to, either.  )

    It would take quite a bit of time and of work (relatively-speaking, for only 4 "Pages") to complete the transcription of these proofs (and therefore, I am not volunteering to work on these myself).

    3A) I wish to note that while the only distinct text in Image 727 is a simple handwritten notation "in English" ("[ca. 8-3-06]"), someone transcribing it seems to have noticed a bit of the French-language page proofs "peeking out" (and unclear) at the bottom of the page -- and has tried to transcribe it (not completely accurately).

    Question to more-experienced Transcribers and/or to moderators at the Library of Congress: Should the French-language page-proof material at the bottom of this page be deleted from the page's transcription (it seems to have been "accidentally" scanned with the page with the date notation), or should the current French-language transcription be revised (the passage can be more-easily read in at least 1 of the later page-proof pages )?


    4) The Spanish-language text page numbers seem correct -- and adding accent marks doesn't seem (to me) to be as though it would take much work itself, but...:

    the text consists of 2-columned pages with English-language (at left) and Spanish-language (at right) texts of a (proposed?) Tariff Agreement between the US and Spain -- and retaining line breaks in the Spanish-language column has led Spanish-language text to "wander over" to the English-language column (which makes following both the English-language and Spanish-language texts more difficult to follow  ).

    What is to be done with this?

    ("re-format" the transcription so that the English-language text could be on top rather than at left, so that lines in 1 language will remain with other lines in the same language??)


    I regret that I put off posting until nearly 5 PM  Eastern Time (I started drafting this after 4 PM Eastern Time) : while I believe that this means that my post will not be reviewed before Tuesday morning February 1st, I hope that it will be reviewed February 1st -- and will be viewable relatively-early February 1st.

    Thanks for reading this post (I hope all the way to this point)..

    Ethan W. Kent/"EthanFromBellmore" -- in New York City.

  • Hi Ethan,

    I've reopened page 726 for you!…

    On pg. 727, I would revise the French-language proof since another volunteer has already taken the time to transcribe it.

    In terms of the two-column format for the Spanish/English documents, I think your suggestion to slightly re-format the transcription where the English (or Spanish) text appears in an unbroken list followed by the other makes the most sense. If you think about the multiple uses for this data, preserving the column format in this case might actually hinder readibility for screen readers (the screen reader would move between Spanish and English, line-by-line not column-by-column) and for those who would download the transcription into a TXT or Excel file.

    Hopefully that cover it in terms of your question but feel free to reply if you have others! Thanks!


    By the People Community Manager

  • Dear Abby/Ms. Shelton,

    This is an incomplete and unwanted short-dish reply to your reply message of this morning (when checking to see if there were any other responses to my message of yesterday (posted today), I lost my original draft -- and will not be returning to that soon).

    Thanks for your reply and your responses, Abby -- although I was actually hoping for different responses concerning page 727 (in which French-language page-proof text "peeks out" below the sheet with the only distinct text (the date notation and the double-columned English-language text/Spanish-language text pages (I had actually figured out how to (with fewer spaced between columns) I could accommodate (it seems) both columns -- although I appreciate that placing the English-language (left-columns) text above the Spanish-language (right-columns) text in the transcription could improve the readability of the transcriptions for readers.

    (I have made the 1-character correction to page 726 and submitted that transcription (again) for Review, and I have submitted page 705's transcription for Review.

    I have not submitted Image 706's transcription.

    I also did some work (before seeing your reply, Abby) on the transcription of the transcribed-"clipping" (in French) from Turkey.)


    I have some other questions (1 not related to this thread at all), though:

    1) I have noticed (in the same batch of Theodore Roosevelt Papers pages) other individual pages whose transcriptions have been labeled as "Completed" -- but whose transcriptions still contain small errors: should I try to find them and list them here (or in a separate thread)??

    2) (Back to this thread's main content:) About the page-proofs pages (729 through 732):

    A) How are marginal notes advising revisions to the proofs to be handled in the transcription (although I am NOT volunteering to work with these pages) -- as "marginalia"?

    (As proof-corrections, they seem to me to be essential parts of the transcription (I only see them in connection to 1 proofs passage (seen in both page 731 & page 732) ) -- but it looks to me difficult-to-impossible to determine exactly where in the proofs texts they "belong" (or which exact places in the text they refer to.)

    B) (I suspect the answer is "Yes," but:) Where proofs text is seen in more than 1 scanned "page" -- should the repeated material be transcribed (as part of what is seen in more than 1 page)??

    That's all I'm saying for now; Thanks again, Abby.

    Signing off for today,

    Ethan W. Kent/"EthanFromBellmore".

  • PS: In addition to submitting the transcription of Page 727 for Review (after consulting at least 1 of the somewhat-clearer scans of the same material in Images 729 and 730), I have added to the page 727 transcription a Tag stating "French text also seen in pages 729 and 730".

    Best Wishes to all for (Groundhog Day) February 2, 2022 (or 2/2/2022, or 2/2/22).

    Ethan (Ethan W. Kent/"EthanFromBellmore").

  • Hi Ethan,

    I'll try to address your questions in order but let me know if I've missed anything!

    1) If you find completed transcriptions with major errors, which we usually define as misspelled proper nouns, frequent typos or misspellings that would hinder searchability, or incomplete text/transcriptions, then you can send the URL to us via email at It's easier for us to keep track of them in our inbox than on History Hub.

    2) This is a really good question because what counts as marginialia can be kind of fuzzy and open for interpretation. If I'm reading your question correctly though, it seems like you are seeing a lot of insertions-where someone made edits directly to the body of the text by adding or deleting words or phrases, etc. If that's the case, you should transcribe them as they would fit naturally into the text. We typically define marginalia as text added after the composition of the original document that is usally commenting on the document but isn't meant to be read in the original text. Like the "Ans 02-02-1902" annotations you often see on letters, indicating that the letter was answered and when. Does that help?

    Thanks for your questions!


    By the People Community Manager

  • Dear Ms. Shelton:

    I'm no longer certain that I will continue to contribute to this particular thread or work on any of the pages mentioned in the initial post of the thread (beyond what I have already contributed).

    I am dismayed-to-annoyed that your answer to the question about the page proofs (within this thread specifically about notations visible in pages 731 and 732, in the right margin) seem to have been answered in a "theoretical" manner, rather than after you actually looked at the material in question (and possibly not after understanding what I was referring to more-generally).

    The Hachette publishing company in Paris submitted page proofs "to" President Roosevelt concerning an article relating an interview with him -- which was to run in a magazine in France (in French); I am not certain whether the maker-of-the-notations (and deletions) was President Roosevelt himself or someone on his personal staff and/or in the US Federal Government (I imagine that the Library of Congress has at least 1 person who could determine whether the notations were done by President Roosevelt or not).

    The point of submitting page proofs to an author for reading is (or was, before the "digital age") to get feedback from the author -- so the notations (while found in the right margins of pages 731 and 732) are not marginal to the scan (although they are with respect to the page-proofs stage in the development of the article).

    (1 of the notations I have found seems to indicate (in French) that the word for "left" should be substituted for the word for "right" in the proofs text; at least 2 others are "trickier" and probably could not be "inserted" in the proofs text. (And I'm not quite certain myself exactly how the revised text was intended to look. )

    But again: please look at the scans before replying "in theory".)

    I (as respectfully as I can) beg you (or someone else at the Library of Congress), Ms. Shelton, to please look at the material before replying again.


    As for "Completed" transcriptions which still contain errors: I think I found 1 page that transcribed the name "Kibbey" 9or possibly "KIBBEY") with "S"-es instead of ""B"s'; on another page,  I found a word like "directed" (or maybe "directing") with an added "e" making a non-word such as "direceted" (or "direceting").

    If I feel it is something I can and wish to do within the next few days, I will send an email message concerning these pages to the email addresses that you (Ms. Shelton) gave me.


    I am not in the best physical or mental condition today, and I'm having problems figuring out how I will cope with the effects of winter weather here in New York City; I am not certain what I will be able to do (and not do) on the Internet in the safe indoors tonight and during the rest of this week.


    I hope that what I have already done in response to this thread has been of help to someone, and I may or may not do any more work with By The People/CROWD within the next few days (I may try to return to the "clipping" "from Turkey"; I am not planning to work with the page proofs pages, so someone else will either have to "muddle through" with them, or decide not to try to.


    I did absolutely no transcribing for "By The People" for about 3 years; perhaps it's time for me to not-transcribe, again.

    Ethan W.. Kent/"EthanFromBellmore".

  • Hi Ethan,

    I've looked back at the pages you asked about (731-732) and if it's not clear to you where the handwritten notes should be inserted into the body of the text and you don't think they qualify as "marginalia" then another suggestion would be to transcribe them at the bottom of the body of text. The idea being that most people who read the transcription when it's returned to will be looking at the original scan as well and will be able to see the placement of the handwritten notes on the page and make their own judgement about where they might go in the body of text or how they might commenting on the text.

    Ultimately, the goal isn't be to absolutely perfect in terms of transcription formatting, but to use good judgment about where text belongs when you encounter an unusual page or text that falls out outside of the specific instructions we've given on the site. We trust our volunteers! Sometimes we can give definitive guidance and sometimes we leave it up to you to decide. I think this might be one of the latter cases.

    In terms of repeating pages (like 731-2), unfortunately that's a reality for many of these collection that were scanned from microfilm (as TR was) and we'd like folks to transcribe the duplicates. Feel free to copy and paste the transcription from one page to anther to make it easier on yourself.

    Hope that helps!



    By the People Community Manager

  • I'm new to this and am a bit unclear what needs to be done.  Do you simply need someone to retype (including accents) what is on the newspaper clippings and/or do you need someone to translate what will have been typed?  I'm proficient enough in French to understand what the newspaper clippings say, but I am not fluent enough to render a professional translation.  I might be able to find someone who is fluent to review my work.  Please let me know.  I am willing to help.