About The Civil War in Letters
The Newberry Transcription Project uses Civil War soldiers’ letters held in the Newberry Library’s Modern Manuscript Collection to understand the history of America’s bloodiest conflict. By crowdsourcing the transcription of these letters, we hope to promote collaboration with readers and volunteers from all over the world. This site provides access to the personal narratives of some Civil War soldiers who claimed Illinois as their home—and indirectly those of their families—on a scale that is not possible in a traditional archive. When transcription work is complete, the site’s searchable transcription feature will allow readers to uncover common themes, conflicts, and emotions that exist across these narratives as a collection. If you are an expert, hobbyist, or enthusiast of Civil War history, we hope you will contribute to this project. In keeping with the Newberry mission, our goal is to make these historical documents accessible in a variety of ways to the broadest possible audience.
This transcription project was launched in conjunction with the exhibition, "Home Front: Daily Life in the Civil War North," on view at the Newberry from September 2013 to March 2014.