The letters featured on The Bosworth Letters were digitized by Virginia Tech Special Collections. Out of the entire collection, I selected four letters featuring content I deemed interesting. For example, some of the documents on my site deal with subjects such as Reconstruction, southern women marrying Union soldiers, and General Lee’s surrender.
Once Special Collections provided me with these letter’s image files, I transcribed their content. Since the letters were handwritten, I had to perform this process by hand because Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software only recognizes typed text.
While transcribing, I came across many words that were unfamiliar to me because they’ve fallen out of use since the 1800’s or were simply obscure. In order to make users’ experience simpler and more enjoyable, I provided a glossary of such terms at the bottom of the letters’ transcriptions.
At the present, my collection includes only four letters from a larger collection, so I hope to add more samples in the coming years.