1 Reply Latest reply on Feb 11, 2019 1:27 PM by Lauren Algee

    Space around punctuation in original documents


      Should we preserve space around punctuation as it appears in original documents? I know, for example, that the 19th-century convention seems to be to include a  space before colons and semi-colons. See this page: https://crowd.loc.gov/campaigns/letters-to-lincoln/1863-civil-war-emancipation-proclamation-and-gettysburg-address/mal2088900/mal2088900-1/


      The original line reads "by the Legislature thereof ; and that" -- should we preserve the space before the semi-colon in our transcription? (I'm reviewing.)


      Thanks --


        • Re: Space around punctuation in original documents
          Lauren Algee Tracker

          Hi Beth!  Preserving spaces is the transcribers' call. We note in the instructions that volunteers should not try to mirror the layout of pages because we are transcribing for search and readability. Spacing is more of a layout than content issue.  It does not affect search, so I would not worry about preserving spacing, unless you think it would aid in the document's readability.


          Speaking for myself, as a reviewer, I would approve a page that transcribed the spacing either way. As a transcriber, in most cases I would default to our 20th century spacing for punctuation to aid future researchers in reading the document.

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