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Because this is dangerously close to spam, I'll keep this short and
sweet.  Spam is not my intention, so pardon the post.

I've been planning such a service over the last few months, not knowing
whether or not it would be needed.  A few other practicing archivists
and librarians are interested in forming a core group to offer the
services you describe below, plus some others not filled by exsting
vendors.

Visit http://monarchos.com for more info.  Keep in mind this is very
much a work in progress -- by practitioners for practitioners.

Please pose any further inquiries to me backchannel, off the list, at clay
AT monarchos DOT com.

Thanks,
Clay Redding

>>>Barbara Aikens wrote: >>>

Leah,

I personally think this is a great idea!  Although I favor
integrating EAD into the normal processing and descriptive
workflow, sometimes it just can't be done; the resources may
not exist and it may be too technical for existing staff (or
the training period too lengthy).   Almost everyone starting
out has to first convert their legacy finding aids, which
are usually their most difficult and inconsistent ones.
Some outside assistance beyond the workshops would have been
most welcome!  Although many of our own stumbling blocks
focused on the creation of appropriate style sheets and
presentation.

We used APEX for larger scale conversions for "legacy"
finding aids.  We sent out 2 batches; the first was
associated with an RLG grant.  We found that the first batch
came back looking pretty good, but the second batch had
numerous inconsistencies.  We realized that some of the
problems were with the finding aids themselves and their own
inconsistencies.  Although APEX was good; it was apparent
that they didn't always have the archivist's perspective to
be able to correctly identify and code sections that were
not properly titled in the finding aids.  After Apex
returned the encoded texts, we had to spend (and are still
working on it) a lot of time "cleaning them up".  I would
think that a consultant would be helpful in this area as
well, especially for an institution that wants to get the
finding aids up, but doesn't have the permanent staff to
deal with it.

Also, a contract encoder would be perfect for some grant
projects.

Good Luck!

>>> [log in to unmask] 08/19/02 10:26AM >>>
Related to this, does anyone know if there are any outfits
out there that
hire people to create EAD finding aids from paper records?
I often thought
that is might be a perfect telecommuter job.  Anyone heard
of such a thing?
Would that be a useful service that institutions might
use?

Leah Prescott
Manuscripts and Archives Librarian
Collections Information Technology Coordinator

MYSTIC SEAPORT
The Museum of America and the Sea
G.W. Blunt White Library
75 Greenmanville Avenue
PO Box 6000
Mystic CT  06355-0990  USA

tel: 860.572.0711 x5263
fax: 860.572.5394
[log in to unmask]
http://www.mysticseaport.org