Waterfront - Project Tagging

For this digital project, transcription might be slightly frivolous as none of the documentation contains text which is unreadable. This is a boon for the project because it saves time and money on the process of transcription and handling/tagging that transcription. However, it cuts down on the amount of searchable text for each document. So, the creation of tagging guidelines (such as creating and providing person, place, and subject tags for documents) and adherence to these guidelines will be crucial. Further complicating the process of tagging is that many of the documents contain images which are crucial to the document itself and the message it is conveying. These images also contain elements, subjects, and devices which people might be interested in searching for. For example, the postcard which shows a crown on the sample documents page would have to be tagged with keys pertaining to both “king” and “crown” making it searchable for those who remember seeing the document and want to search for it by its distinctive image or those who are looking for documents which refer to Joe Ryan as “King Ryan.”

Tagging will be done in TEI P4 as this is the most up to date and supported form of tagging. It works with xml/html and enables a single document to function in multiple ways.

The purpose of this encoding will be to communicate search items which would otherwise be communicated through transcription and to facilitate search items (content, location, chronology, organizations, figures, types of propaganda, etc) for use of the website and its search function.

For most subjects (figures such as Joe Ryan or Governor Thomas Dewey, organizations such as the ILA and AFL-CIO, and History – New York, etc) LoC subject headings will be used. Some additional subject headings will be used which relate to subjects within the history of the dockworkers. This may seem redundant to some, but it is one area where LoC is particularly weak and for such a small/specific project it will be helpful to have more small/specific subjects for people to search. In general metadata within tagging should be as thick as possible, hopefully enabling, as much as possible, interesting and unforeseeable uses of the documents in the future.

Particular attention will be paid to images including those that stand on their own as well as images which accompany text. The embedded tags will be very important in making these images searchable. In edition to this, small descriptive text will be created where possible. This text will be searchable and in itself tagged where appropriate.

Tagging will also link documents coming from the same folder of the collection to each other. Subject and name headings which the document falls under will be displayed as links and when clicked on will show other documents falling under that category.

Tagging will also enable the conveyance of the actual physical size of items, the provenance and rights of items, and in the case of items which come from newspapers and other publications, the date and name of publication of the item.

Sample structure for documents (particularly those that contain or are images):

Document Main entry for a document collection or publication
Source Bibliographic information
Title Of collection or publication
Author Creator of Document and/or Collection
Date Date of item
Repository Where original held
Copyright Info and link to Rights and Repro contact
Image of Document/Photo Each scan
Head Summary information about document/image
Title Title of document and/or containing folder when app.
Index Multiple index terms for document
Subject Names Persons involved in document or referenced
Subject Organizations Organizations involved in document or referenced
Subject Topics Topics referenced in document
Subject Places Places involved in document or referenced
Etc. Other intellectual classifications
Scan/Image Representation/Link to image
Supplied Info. Descriptive elements
Size Dimensions of object/document/image
Origin Individual, Organization, and Place of document creation
Date Date supplied by document, regularized in tag
Paragraphs additional descriptive info provided by curators
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