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Re: census transcribing

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  • Joyce Metcalfe
    Hi Peter, I just finished transcribing the Okotoks area for the 1911 Census and emailed it into the site. I haven t seen whether or not my work has been
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 18, 2006
      Hi Peter,
      I just finished transcribing the Okotoks area for the 1911 Census and emailed it into the site.  I haven't seen whether or not my work has been linked up yet, so I've had know feedback yet and really don't know whether I did a good job or not.
      The writing on the 1911 Census is extremely poor (as we all know by now) so it was a really tough go.  The 1906 Census is far easier to read.
      To help me decipher my area in 1911, here is what I did.
      1) I picked an area that I had some familiarity with already.
      2) I referred back to the 1906 and even 1901 censuses - Not to correct the censustaker's errors (these I left as they were).  But to help me read the censustaker's handwriting more accurately (so that I didn't introduce trascription errors by misreading what! was there).
      3)  I imported the pdf files into my photo editing software and "enhanced" the edges and played around with accented edges, sharpening, contrast, brightness, curves, color mode, etc.  I would change these setting for each word, if necessary, to try to get the best image I could of whatever area of the sheet I was working with.  This particularly helped to bring up the fainter lines that existed on some of my pages.  I also zoomed both in and out - sometimes a word was easier to read close up, but not aways.  Zooming out again after zooming in would often help "pull" the word back together.
      4)  I referred also to published local histories on the Alberta Digitization Project website https://www.ourfutureourpast.ca to gain some background knowledge of the prominent surnames and families in the area.  I can't stres! s how much being familiar with "what should have been there" helped me to read what was actually there.
      The added research, of course, added quite a bit of time into the exercise; but I think it was very worthwhile towards making my work more accurate.  Overall, I enjoyed doing it.
      Hope this helps and all the best,
      Peter and Yvonne Adams <pyst@...> wrote:
      Has anyone volunteered to transcribe a census?
      I am thinking of volunteering.&! nbsp; What will I be in for if I do?  Any words of advice, encouragement or commiseration to send?
      Peter Adams
      Calgary, Ab

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