Spalding Base Ball Guides, 1889-1939


Spalding Base Ball Guides, 1889-1939 began as a Preservation Reformatting Division (PRD) project, one purpose of which was to integrate the practices developed in digital reformatting into the array of reformatting options available to support the preservation of materials in Library of Congress collections. It subsequently became an American Memory project, resulting in the assigning of a new project team. Consequently, many people within Library contributed to its development. The following Library units and their staff members were involved in the project from conceptualization to completion.

Preservation Reformatting Division Staff

Shirley Hua Liang, Spalding Project Leader while the project was in PRD, launched the project and oversaw the complete digitization, both image and OCR (Optical Character Recognition), of the Official Indoor Base Ball Guides and the cataloging upgrade. She also designed a relational database that captured book-level descriptive and administrative metadata and page-level structural metadata for the Official Indoor Base Ball Guide and Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide. After the project left PRD, she provided excellent documentation valuable to the continuation of the project and gave freely of her time and expertise throughout its completion. She was ably assisted by a number of PRD employees, including William Hogan, who helped select and gather the guides; Ronald Murray and James Hodson, who provided database design help and expertise in digital imaging; and Denise A Jackson, Quality Assurance Specialist of the Preservation Reformatting Division, who assisted with preparing the guides for scanning. Invaluable guidance, support, and advice were provided by Irene Schubert, Chief, Preservation Reformatting Division; LeeEllen Friedland, Senior Digital Conversion Specialist; and Lesia J. Bodnaruk, Preservation Reformatting Projects Coordinator.

American Memory Staff

Steve McCollum, Project Leader, oversaw the completion of the digitization of the Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide series and release of this collection. Matt McCrady and Aaron Chaletzky performed diligent image and text review, as well as responsibility for the receipt of deliveries. Thadas Jeffers performed the actual OCR and all file management it entailed. Other contributions came from persons who were active in the National Digital Library Program during the development period: Martha Anderson, Caroline Arms, and Carl Fleischhauer (at this writing, staff members of the Office of Strategic Initiatives), and Nancy Eichacker (now in Library Services).

Information Technology Services Staff

David Woodward contributed the programming and design implementation for the page turners, item-record display, browse lists, text display, and collection searches.

Humanities and Social Sciences Division staff

David Kelly, Reference Librarian, Main Reading Room, recommended the Spalding Guides as a digital reformatting project and was the person responsible for locating most, if not all, of the Spalding Guides in the Library which had been dispersed to different shelf locations in the Library’s General Collections over the years. He also authored the “About the Collection” documentation accompanying this online collection.

Prints and Photographs Division Staff

Phil Michel lent his expertise to resolving imaging questions and concerns.

Bindings and Collections Care Division Staff

Werner C. Haun, Collections Conservator and Head of the Preservation Collections Care Section, treated the thirty-five volumes and issued handling requirements for material to be scanned by the scanning contractors.

Conservation Division Staff

Alan D. Haley, Conservator, conducted the collection evaluation for the 1,400 volumes of Spalding, submitted the evaluation report, and treated the fifteen volumes of the Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guides. The meticulous conservation work carried out by Werner Haun and Alan Haley has protected the original books for the future.

Serial Record Division Staff

Maryvonne Mavroukakis re-created the bibliographic records for the Official Indoor Base Ball Guide and for Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide.

Individuals and Organizations outside the Library of Congress

Craig Jensen, of Acme Bookbinding, provided scanning services for the Official Indoor Base Ball Guide. Systems Integration Group provided scanning services for Spalding’s Official Base Ball Guide. Bill Hall, University of Michigan, performed OCR and SGML encoding for the Official Indoor Base Ball Guide. Christie Stephenson, Digital Library Production Services of the University of Michigan, provided important initial OCR text conversions. James L. Gates Jr., Library Director of the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum, Inc., loaned replacement volumes from the museum’s Spalding collection when the Library’s Spalding items had missing pages.