Archive Workshop Day

When we work at the archive, you will need:

Zotero, open as a webpage or as the Firefox extension

  • remember to make sure you are logged in, or your work will disappear!

A Zotero collection in your personal library, NOT the group library

  • this is available as a yellow square with a green plus dot, on the far left of Zotero as a webpage or extension
  • to start with, I suggest making a Zotero collection named for the collection you’re looking at in the archive. later in the term you may choose to organize your material differently, but this is a good place to start.

Document-level citations in Zotero

  • to manually add a citation, click the green plus dot and choose the material type
  • manuscript is for unbound hand-written material, document is for any printed, unbound material unless it clearly fits into another document type (news article, letter, etc). this is easy to change later and I’ll give feedback, so just use your best judgement to start with
  • fill in as much of the citation info as possible, though you may not always have author, title, etc depending on your sources.
  • don’t worry about filling in:
    • short title
    • language
    • accessed
    • catalog
    • call number
    • rights
  • the series, box and folder information should be entered under “Loc. In Archive.”
  • you do not need to enter every document you look at! just the ones you take data from

Structured data

  • you will need to share your spreadsheet with me, so make sure you’re using something that can save
  • Excel, Open Office and Google Drive are all good options
  • There is a shared Google spreadsheet available here or you can make one in your own account and share it with me
  • you’re welcome to add a sheet but please name your sheet with your name (this is only visible to our class)
  • remember what we learned using RAW
    • numbers are great
    • text is good when it can be categorized—ie, titles of movies and their genre, or names of people and their gender
    • don’t over-think your categories at this stage, we’ll come back to the issue of structure
    • we haven’t covered mapping yet, but if your sources include a lot of geodata (street addresses, towns, counties, states, etc) grabbing it now will give you something to work with down the road
    • not everything needs to be filled out—see the example structured data from the class of 1845
  • no matter how far you get with your spreadsheet, share it with me at the end of class
    • emailing it, putting the file in the course dropbox, clicking the blue share link in Google Docs or leaving it in the shared Google spreadsheet are all options
    • ask me if you’re unsure, but I need a spreadsheet from everyone at the end of class!

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