In this work, I have chosen to adhere generally to the transcription methods used in the professional field of documentary editing as they pertain to spelling, marginalia, legibility, and punctuation.
Original spelling, even as it regards to proper nouns like names and places, has been retained. A standardized spelling of these key data points is captured in the metadata, ensuring accurate referencing of a term throughout the documents, despite spelling variations in the original texts.
Transcriptions provided here will follow original formatting as well as they can within the confines of the chosen content management system, Drupal 8. As the pension system relied quite heavily on standardized forms, any content hand-written into a form blank is underlined in the transcribed version, allowing viewers to distinguish the form content from the additions written in by an applicant or attorney.
Any words or phrases that appear between the lines or within the margins will be placed within the transcription, if their intended placement is noted by the original author and is clearly discerned by the transcriber/ editor. Any struck text that might add to a reader’s understanding of the document will be retained with a strikethrough font class.
If something is illegible to the transcriber/ editor, a notation of [illegible] will appear in the word’s place. The same goes for words obscured by a tear [tear], smear [smear], crease [crease], or similar.
In regards to punctuation, the transcriber/ editor will retain as much of the original as possible, with a few notable exceptions. Where punctuation marks appear as commas but act as periods, the transcriber/ editor will opt to insert a period for ease of readability and coherence. When documents contain little or no punctuation, rendering the document more difficult to read, the transcriber/ editor will add punctuation marks if their correct placement is immediately apparent; in these instances, the transcriber/ editor will note these additions for future readers.
The transcription of irregular items (like a map, for instance) will follow the editorial standards established within the “Transcribing Documents in the National Archives Catalog” publication. Please refer to this booklet for more information.