Roundtable Discussion on Documentary Editing at this year’s AHA

Documentary editors have long recognized the unique capabilities of the digital edition, which allows for more integrated presentation of metadata as well as greater accessibility for users via the Internet. With the process of creating online editions well explored, what are the next steps editors must take to stay current in an ever-changing digital environment?

At the American Historical Association annual meeting (, January 7-10 in Atlanta, editors will discuss the methods they use to remain up-to-date in the production and dissemination of their editions at the roundtable “Documentary Editors Engage the 21st Century” ( While digital technology allows for new ways of presenting documentary texts, these technologies also create opportunities to reach out to new audiences.

Should documentary editors’ responsibilities lie solely with presenting reliable texts, or should they also include making that text approachable to a wider audience? How do editors go about doing this, and why should they concern themselves with it? Scholars on this roundtable represent a variety of editorial projects, and from their unique perspectives they will discuss how they seize the opportunities of the digital age to ensure that their work remains relevant to a rapidly evolving audience. This could refer to the types of documents editors work on, the presentation of the texts themselves, auxiliary projects based on the data arising from the documents, or reaching out to audiences through the use of social media. Participants will also discuss getting students involved in editing, ensuring that interest in documentary editing will continue well beyond the period of current scholars’ careers.

Speakers include Tenisha Armstrong (Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project), David Coleman (Presidential Recordings Program), Edward G. Lengel (The Washington Papers Project), and Jennifer Steenshorne (The Selected Papers of John Jay). They will give brief presentations, followed by a discussion, in which they hope to be joined by fellow editors, archivists, and textual scholars.

The session will be held Thursday, January 7, 3:30 PM-5:30 PM, in the Crystal Ballroom C (Hilton Atlanta, First Floor). For more information about the AHA annual meeting, visit The meeting will also include sessions on archival issues, public history, and digital history, as well as sessions and events in numerous historical disciplines. We hope you’ll consider joining, as well as helping to spread the word about this event.

For more information, feel free to contact the session chair, Stephanie Kingsley, at



Stephanie Kingsley (American Historical Association)

Tenisha Armstrong (Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project)
David Coleman (Presidential Recordings Program)
Edward G. Lengel (The Washington Papers Project)
Jennifer Steenshorne (The Selected Papers of John Jay)

Date: Thursday, January 7
Time: 3:30 PM-5:30 PM
Location: Crystal Ballroom C (Hilton Atlanta, First Floor)

A complete session abstract is available in the online program:

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Assistant or Associate Editor, The Papers of Benjamin Franklin

The Papers of Benjamin Franklin, a comprehensive, annotated edition co-sponsored by Yale University and the American Philosophical Society and housed at Yale, seeks an Assistant or Associate Editor to help complete the edition. Of a projected 47 volumes, 41 volumes have been published and volume 42 (March through August, 1784) is in press. The successful candidate will assist with the final editorial work on volumes 43 and 44, covering the end of Franklin’s mission to France, and will help prepare volumes 45-47, covering Franklin’s final years in Philadelphia. Duties will include research, writing annotation, checking annotation written by colleagues, and proofreading texts against handwritten manuscripts, and may include analytical indexing. Required: M.A. in early American history or a related field, and three years experience editing and researching scholarly materials for publication; or, Ph.D. in a related field. Meticulous attention to detail is essential. Reading knowledge of French is helpful; experience in documentary editing is preferred. AA/EOE. Send letter of application, c.v., and the names of three references to Ellen R. Cohn, Editor, The Papers of Benjamin Franklin,

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Editorial Associate, The Papers of Thomas Jefferson

The Papers of Thomas Jefferson seeks an Editorial Associate, who will be a key member of a collaborative team of seven full-time professionals preparing the authoritative edition of Jefferson’s papers for publication in print and online. The project’s focus now is on the period of Jefferson’s two terms as President of the United States. The Editorial Associate’s activities will include (but are not limited to) editing files for publication using customized XML editing software and TEI markup; co-coordinating the project’s web content management system; maintaining the edition’s standards of document transcription, textual verification, and descriptive and explanatory annotation; transcribing and formatting early 19th-century letters and non-epistolary holograph documents for publication; contributing to the analysis of documents and the preparation of content for the edition; coordinating the project’s role in a multi-stage publication process; and serving as the project’s office manager and administrative support provider. Review of applications will commence on December 21, 2015. Applicants must apply online at (Requisition #1501005) with a cover letter, a curriculum vitae, and contact information for three references. The references may either be included as part of the CV or as a separate document. This position is subject to the University’s background check policy.

Essential Qualifications: Master’s degree; experience in scholarly publication or documentary editing; strong interpersonal and communication skills; ability to work both independently and in a collaborative environment; demonstrated ability to work on schedule and to meet production deadlines.

Preferred Qualifications: Knowledge of TEI text encoding and XML file format; familiarity with Microsoft Word, Excel, and Access; academic training in History, American Studies, Literature, or the Humanities; research or editing experience with late 18th-century and early 19th-century American manuscript and printed primary sources; reading knowledge of French, Italian, Spanish, German, or Latin.

Princeton University is an equal opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status, or any other characteristic protected by law.


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Job Announcement: Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project

The Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers Project publishes The Papers of Martin Luther King, Jr., the definitive edition of King’s most historically significant speeches, sermons, correspondence, and unpublished manuscripts. The Project seeks a full-time research assistant to support and facilitate the publication of the documentary editions of the King Papers by: (1) conducting research necessary to prepare document annotations, a chronology of King’s activities, and the introductory essay for the manuscript of each volume, including but not limited to biographical, organizational, and microfilm-based research; (2) verification of accuracy of document transcriptions; (3) editing and proofreading the manuscript; (4) sorting incoming documents according to historical significance and priority for cataloguing; (5) acquiring documents for possible publication; (6) obtaining copyright permission agreements to publish documents and photographs in the volumes of King’s papers; (7) assisting in the compilation of the calendar of documents; (8) working with editors to ensure accuracy of web-based materials.

The position also includes working with the other research assistants to recruit, train, and coordinate student researchers; to help plan and implement the summer internship program; to assist in verification of data entry in the web-accessible database of King-authored and other historically relevant documents; process audio/visual materials for Project’s web-accessible database, including digitizing of audio/visual and print material for web access; to participate in planning Project events such as the annual King Holiday commemoration; and to carry out public relations tasks, including responding to outside research requests.

This is a two-year fixed term position.

To learn more about the position or to submit a resume and cover letter, visit

Use requisition IDs 68898 or 68900

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Call for nominations: Julian P. Boyd Award

The Julian P. Boyd Award committee solicits nominations for a recipient of the award for 2016. The award is presented every three years by the Association for Documentary Editing to a senior scholar in honor of a distinguished contribution to the study of American history and culture. The ADE’s highest award, it was established in 1980 and commemorates Boyd’s commitment to excellence and the breadth of his scholarly interests. Past recipients include Arthur S. Link, Harold C. Syrett, Fredson Bowers, Louis R. Harlan, Jo Ann Boydston, David R. Chesnutt, John Y. Simon, William W. Abbott, G. Thomas Tanselle, and the three members of the committee.

Nominations and supporting materials should be received by the committee no later than March 15, 2016. Nominations, supporting materials, and questions about the process may be addressed to:

Gary E. Moulton
1155 ‘Q’ Street, UNL
P. O. Box 880214
Lincoln, NE 68588-0214

From the committee:

Gary E. Moulton, chair
John P. Kaminski
Barbara B. Oberg

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Butterfield Award Nominations

The Lyman H. Butterfield Award committee solicits nominations for a
recipient of the award in 2016. This award is presented annually by the
Association for Documentary Editing to an individual, editorial project, or
institution for notable contributions in the areas of documentary
publication, teaching, or service.

Nominations should be made by letter. Supporting letters from members of the
Association are encouraged. All materials should reach the committee chair
by 15 May 2016, sent either by e-mail or by post to:

Esther Katz
Margaret Sanger Papers Project
New York University
838 Broadway, suite 838
New York, NY 10003

Thank you,

Esther Katz, chair
Cathy Moran Hajo
John Lupton
James McClure

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Third and final volume of Autobiography of Mark Twain published!

October sees the publication of the third and final volume of Autobiography of Mark Twain, chronicling the author’s inner and outer life through a series of daily dictations that go wherever his fancy leads.

Created from March 1907 to December 1909, these dictations present Mark Twain at the end of his life: receiving an honorary degree from Oxford University; railing against Theodore Roosevelt; founding numerous clubs; incredulous at an exhibition of the Holy Grail; credulous about the authorship of Shakespeare’s plays; relaxing in Bermuda; observing (and investing in) new technologies. The Autobiography‘s “Closing Words” movingly commemorate his daughter Jean, who died on Christmas Eve 1909. Also included in this volume is the previously unpublished “Ashcroft-Lyon Manuscript,” Mark Twain’s caustic indictment of his “putrescent pair” of secretaries and the havoc that erupted in his house during their residency.

Only partially published up to now, the whole Autobiography of Mark Twain has been critically reconstructed and fully annotated by the editors of the Mark Twain Project. At last it is made available as it was intended to be read.

The text of all three volumes, with annotations and full critical apparatus, is available at (no fee). Direct link to volume 3:

Print and epub are available from University of California Press:

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Final Volume of Robinson Jeffers’s Correspondence Published

The third and final volume Robinson Jeffers’s correspondence was published by Stanford University Press in August, along with a revised edition of the biographical introduction from Volume One.

The Collected Letters of Robinson Jeffers, with Selected Letters of Una Jeffers, Volume Three: 1940–1962

Robinson Jeffers: Poet and Prophet

Wall Street Journal review:

Congratulations to James Karman, Emeritus Professor, English, Comparative Religion and Humanities, California State University, Chico, on this accomplishment!

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Jane Addams Papers Opens at Ramapo College

Jane Addams, 1914 (Library of Congress)

Jane Addams, 1914 (Library of Congress)

I am very pleased to announce the opening of the Jane Addams Papers Project at Ramapo College of New Jersey. This new project, funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission, aims to publish documents from the second half of Addams’ life (1901-1935) in both digital and print publications.

The project opened its doors on September 1, sponsored by the College’s Salameno School of Humanities and Global Studies. We recently launched a website, and held an interest meeting to introduce the project to students, faculty and staff.

Our goals for this year are to develop a digital editing platform using Omeka and to begin publishing document images, transcriptions, and descriptive metadata.

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Lincoln Papers

A (bleak) update on the Lincoln Papers situation.


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