Diving Back In

After a crazy summer, my equally crazy semester is in full swing now and I love it so far. I am involved in a lot of new projects and have a couple of new jobs. I’m really enjoying learning about and working with different subjects, including another aspect of the MBDA project.

I’ve recently begun the file joining process, which is a welcome break from hours and hours of scanning. I love being able to see the project come together in a tangible way. In my head I can see the big picture and know the value of being able to access these documents in an online database, but before this semester it was hard to imagine what that would actually look like and how it would work as I was scanning documents each day.

Now, I get to see the documents actually come together. They have context, they’re beginning to be organized into larger subject groups, and they’re labeled with tags to make them more searchable. It will be great to have a more balanced ratio of joined documents to scanned images.

It’s also been fun to pick back up with reading the correspondence. I’ve been joining documents from a section of letters that I didn’t scan so I am still able to discover new things within the letters. Today, my favorite was a letter from a man conducting an infomercial in a letter. I personally find infomercials on television rather entertaining, but it was even more entertaining to me that infomercials existed even in 1928 and their claims were just as ridiculous as the claims made today. This letter was sent to sell the Berry schools an “up-to-date garden tool.” The makers of this tool claimed that with this tool, a boy or even a girl could do more work than “ten men with a hoe.” The author of the letter offered to let Miss Berry “try it out” free of charge. I’m sure that after the trial, this miracle tool could be purchased for only three easy payments of $19.99.

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