Middletown Women's History

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Collection Name
Middletown Women's History Collection
Artifact Type(s)
Books, Minutes, Pictures, Scrapbooks, etc.
Item Count
318 items, roughly 10000 pages
Contact Person (MADI)
Amanda Hurford
Contact Person (Archives)
Maren Read


Date Started
Scanning completed
Collection added to DMR


The Ball State University Libraries is creating a Middletown Women’s History Digital Collection to provide online access to archival materials documenting the experiences of women in Muncie, Indiana, from the 1880s through the 1930s. The resources will illuminate women’s history in the six areas of the seminal Middletown studies conducted in Muncie as a representative American community beginning in the 1920s: Getting a Living; Making a Home; Training the Young; Using Leisure; Engaging in Religious Practices; and Engaging in Community Activities. Through increased access to diaries, correspondence, scrapbooks, and other records of women and women’s organizations, the resource will expand research opportunities in women’s studies, women’s history, U. S. history, sociology, and other disciplines. It will provide fresh historical perspective and new areas for investigation focusing on women in Middle America. The collection will be available online in through the Digital Media Repository http://libx.bsu.edu.

It consists of the following manuscript and photograph collections from BSU Libraries Archives and Special Collections:

This project is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered by the Indiana State Library.


  • Scan items so that there are at least 3000 pixels on the long end, 24-bit, full color
  • Save files in the appropriate folder within "\\libnasiv\womenhistory\TIFFs_In"
    • The image should be cropped to the size of the page or photograph, retaining all text and margins, and rotated to the proper orientation
    • No other cropping, color correction, or other editing should occur

File Naming

  • File names should start with "WH-", to designated the file as part of the Women's History project.
  • Follow this with the Archives ID number for the item (e.g., MSS23), then a dot, then a three digit number, then another dash
    • Use 001 for the first item with a given ID, and just keep incrementing that for each additional item (e.g., MSS23.001, MSS23.002, etc.)
  • Use a three digit number, to keep pages in order, then an underscore
  • Finish with an appropriate label for the item (e.g., Page-1, Image-3, etc.)



Be flexible. If you have something that doesn't fit into the pattern, do something that makes sense, and let Melanie know about it.


For this project, we plan to make every effort to transcribe all of the handwritten documents selected for the collection. Staff from Archives and Special Collections, Metadata and Digital Initiatives and students from the Department of Women’s Studies will be participating in this effort.

For examples of transcripts, see the G.W.H. Kemper Papers in the Digital Media Repository [1].

Procedures for Transcription

Transcript Files

  • The transcript should be created as a document compatible with Microsoft Word 2003 (a doc file, not docx).
  • Add page numbers to the transcript document in the bottom, right hand corner.
  • Insert a page break for each new page in the document being transcribed, even if there is no text on the page.
  • If there is printed text (newspaper clippings, brochures, etc.), these do not need to be transcribed. Indicate on the transcript in brackets that these materials are on the page and we will OCR them.
  • Include a citation for the original document at the bottom of the first page of the transcript.
                For MSS 86: Minutes [include dates covered], Community Women's Club Records, Archives and Special Collections, Ball State
                            University Libraries         
                EX: [Document information], [Collection Title], Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University  
  • Please notify Maren Read if the documents were scanned out of order or a page seems to be missing.
  • The file name for the transcript file should be the same as the pdf document (ex. WH-MSS86.004).
  • Completed transcript files should be emailed to Maren Read.

Rules for Transcribing Historic Documents

  • A transcription is an exact copy of a source document. Everything should be rendered exactly as found in the original document. All of the original abbreviations, cancellations, capitalization, punctuation, spelling, and arrangement of the text should be maintained.
  • Be sure that the spell check/correct option is turned off to avoid auto-correcting!
  • Technical Rules
    • Maintain the original arrangement of the text, including line breaks and indentations.
    • Any comments or additions made by the transcriber should be in brackets [ ] to avoid confusion with parentheses that may be found in the document.
    • Use three ellipses points…to indicate the omission of words due to paper loss or stains.
    • Use a question mark in brackets [?] for words or parts of words that are illegible.
    • If a word is misspelled, type the word as it was originally written by the author and include correct spelling in brackets [ ].
    • Spell out abbreviations in brackets. Example: Indian affs. [Affairs].
    • Capitalization and punctuation should not be corrected in the transcript.
    • For envelopes: Maintain the line breaks and indentations. If the postmark is decipherable, include this location and date information in brackets.
                   [Indianapolis, Ind.2
                     Nov 8
                     3:30 PM

Index of People, Places and other Terms

As we transcribe these interviews, we will keep a running list of names, locations, phrases and other terms that appear in the documents to help with transcription and metadata creation. Please send names, locations, and phrases to Maren Read and she will confirm the spellings using sources in the Archives and add them to this list under the collection name. The index will be available on this Middletown Women's History Index of People, Places, and other Terms page at [2]


The following metadata schema has been established for the Middletown Women's History project:

  • Title
  • Subject
  • Geographic Subject
  • Description
  • Date
  • Creator
  • Contributor (secondary creators if any)
  • Recipient
  • Location Written
  • Location Received
  • Persons Pictured
  • Language
  • Notes
  • Originating Page (for use in scrapbook items)
  • Page URL (for use in scrapbook items)
  • Original Physical Format
  • Media Type
  • Digital Identification
  • Archival Identification
  • Collection
  • Archives Subcollection
  • Middletown Category
  • Repository
  • Copyright
  • Ordering Information