Introduce yourself and meet the community.

Hello! Thank you for taking the time to explore History Hub, the discussion space for the Library of Congress' latest crowdsourcing initiative.

We'd love to hear from you about what brings you to the project, how you're using in the classroom or for your research, and the interesting things you've discovered while transcribing. Don't worry, you don't have to be an educator, researcher or even a regular participant on the project to chime in! You're welcome here, and we're grateful to all our volunteers for any time they can spend transcribing, reviewing, tagging or chatting about the Library's fascinating collections.

  • Welcome Sheena! We hope you'll share the site with friends, family and patrons of your museum! Happy transcribing.

  • Hi everyone! I'm Filomena from Portugal and I work in a University Library. I rely like history and everything related to books. I can't even get near a bookshop, it is my weakness, books. All kind of books and stories. And I'm very happy to collaborate with your project.

  • Hi everyone!

    I'm Jennifer and I'm from California.  I'm a scientist, but I also enjoy reading and US history.  I love libraries too and am happy to contribute to a project that will help a major library make more historical US documents more accessible to everyone.  If there are any documents from scientists that need to be transcribed I would be very excited to help out with that as well.

    PS, When I was in Washington DC a few years ago I took a tour of the Jefferson building and it was love at first sight

  • Thanks Jennifer, and welcome! Glad you got to visit the Library in person and that you want to stay connected. There might be some science related material in 2019, but it will depend a little on how much we transcribe of the collections that are already online.

    If you are able to join us virtually next Monday--the 19th of November--we're hosting an in person and virtual event around the 155th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address, which will also serve as a launch event for Crowd. Everyone is encouraged to sign on and take part in the Letters to Lincoln Challenge. Learn more here: 

  • Hi. My name is Henry. I have a lifelong interest in History. I ahe read so much on Lincoln but was disappointed that EVERYBODY wanted to work on his papers and they were done quickly. I have chosen to focus on Mary Church Terrell. Amazing woman. One of the founders of the NAACP. She lived from 1863-1954. I'm learning a lot about Jim Crow and the discrimination African-Americans faced over the years. I have become adept at reading her handwriting so if anybody has questions, feel free to contact me. Among the tips, she frequently does not cross her small t's so they sometimes look like L's. She also will carry over words from one line to the other without a hyphen. If I think of anything else I will post it.

  • Hello Victoria and Community,

    When asked what I like to read, I usually say "dead authors." By that I mean classics, diaries, historical documents, stuff that makes the general public drift to another corner of the party room.

    In the past few years I've broadened my scope to include mainstream novels, including the mash-up I'm currently reading, "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies," which had me amused til i read the insult held in its summary, touting itself as a book transforming "...a masterpiece of world literature into something you'd actually want to read." To uphold the honor of those of us who have a passion for unadulterated classics, I drew my blood-crusty cutlass and shredded the book to bits.

    I have to say that finding this transcription call has saved my sanity, as my real-world job which has for so long been a joy is quickly becoming zombified, and I need the clean air that transcribing seems to bring. To be reading things that were written by hands once virile, and glimpse the minds and souls behind the penmanship, is thrilling! the ultimate mash-up of past and present, and a sort of voyeurism that feels unifying in a deep way.



  • Hi all, I'm a government attorney by profession, but I took up genealogy as a hobby about 20 years ago. In the process of researching my ancestors, I became pretty adept at deciphering the handwriting in old documents. I studied the different styles of 19th century copperplate scripts and learned how to puzzle out the meaning from the scribbles. I hope I can put my somewhat estoteric skills to work for this historical project.

  • Hi folks --

    I live in Durham, NC.  I'm a fan of history and have always loved primary documents.  I've long been a fan of the oral histories and photos from the Depression era that were made available by the LOC fifteen or so years ago. 

    I love a challenge and it's interesting to me how quickly my visual system is being retrained to be able to read handwriting again, though I see so little of it now in my day-to-day life. 

    So far, two of my favorites are a letter from someone who lost his position as paymaster, begging/demanding to be reinstated (I felt put-off and sorry for him in turns while reading), and the gift of a salmon by a Maine eccentric (and it was jarring to remember that as recently as 150 years ago, salmon was native). 

    I look forward to transcribing more of these letters, and things from other collections.  I'd be particularly interested in working on earlier materials after these.


  • I also noticed how many people gravitated toward the Lincoln papers, so I clicked around the other campaigns to see what other documents might need some love.  I decided to focus on William Oland Bourne and his Left-Hand Penmanship Contest.  Many of the entrants saw action in the most famous Civil War battles, and reading their first-person accounts  has given me a completely new perspective on the war.  Because so many different people entered, it is more challenging to read all of the handwriting, but it's a challenge I enjoy.  One tip I can give is that a lot of people back then used something similar to the German esset for words with a double "s;" many times it will look like there is an "fs" in a word which has a double "s."

  • Welcome Christy Ferguson, Rebecca M, and Henry Rosenberg!  I'm excited that you've joined us in this transcription adventure and that you bring varied and interesting interest (but uniform enthusiasm) to the Library's collections!