About the Project


This is the first digital project to scan the entire contents of a president's administration. This includes ALL executive, legislative, judicial, and military records, housed within the National Archives Records Administration. All documents, photographs, and maps created between November 1860 (after Lincoln is elected president) through April 15, 1865, including all records related to the assassination and conspirators, the capture and imprisonment of Jefferson Davis, and finally the trial of John Surratt are being scanned and transcribed for full search capabilities. For the first time, the millions of records through technology will be able to talk to each other, instantly linking related records in a matter of seconds. This project will inventory the records down to the document level, providing the National Archives with inventories of holdings.


We are using Greenstone software, an open source content management system. (www.greenstone.org)

Epson large format scanners GT 10000 and GT 30000, SCSI models

Dell computers are used with XP and Windows 7 platforms

All records are scanned at 600 dpi, 24 bit color, and saved as uncompressed tif images.

Records are converted into Zoomify images, enabling the user to be able to magnify the record for closer examination.

The Lincoln Archives website is housed on Amazon Web Services

We use Amazon Glacier and Seagate hard drives to store the scanned images


The Lincoln Archives Digital Project and Pittsburg State University, located in Pittsburg, Ks. Lincoln Archives has had a partnership in existence since 2007. Interns fly out for a two week period, are immersed in learning to work with the finding aids at the National Archives, creating inventories with Excel, digitizing records, as well as doing some transcription, and metadata work. They get credit for the work they perform.

We are expanding our internship program to bring in those with Computer Science qualifications, C++, Java, Apache, etc. to brainstorm ways to expand the feature we offer on the website, as well as provide a strong search engine, and relational database for the millions of records.  This is an internship position that can be done via telework.

Another internship opportunity is transcribing records.  Since all of these records are handwritten, they must be transcribed for full search capabilities.  Metadata must be added to each document to make searching efficient and effective.

There is also opportunities for those students with great writing skills, as well as history background in the Civil War to annotate the records.

All of these opportunities provide great experience, which can be included on resumes.

Requirements - (Out of the D.C. Metro Area) - (Two week internship) -

Week 1
- 60 hours required - Monday-Thursday 9-5

  • Day 1 - Introduction to the Research room, with finding aids, and archival staff.  Learn how to navigate the National Archives (use of finding aids, what is a record group, what is an entry?  How to put in a pull request for records, how to handle records, how to create an Excel spreadsheet to inventory records)
  • Day 2 - data entry into spreadsheet
  • Day 3 - learn how to use scanner software, entering data into spreadsheet for each record
  • Day 4 - what is metadata?  Creating metadata and keywords for records
  • Day 5-7 - Touring, on your own

Week 2 - 60 hours required - Monday-Thursday 9-5

  • Day 1 - Introduction to organizing the hierarchy for content management system.  How are the records organized? (Chronological, Alphabetical, by file name, etc.)  Introduction to html code.  Creating a web page for the document, etc.
  • Day 2 - Introduction to Greenstone - Administrative backend - Getting web pages ready to upload into Greenstone
  • Day 3 - continuing to scan pulled records
  • Day 4 - Introduction to transcribing records -
  • Day 5-7 - Touring, on your own

For D.C. Metro Internships
Minimum 1 semester - 10-20 hours per week
The schedule for the first two weeks will follow the above schedule

Interns applicants must provide three letters of recommendation, two from your professors.

All interested in being part of the intern program can contact the Lincoln Archives Digital Project on Facebook.

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