– In order to hew as closely to the original document, abbreviations are generally left unexpanded. For example, from “Weed.g Gang,” it is fairly easy to ascertain that “Weed.g” is an abbreviation for “Weeding.” However, abbreviations that are not clear are spelled out in brackets immediately following the abbreviation. Example: Indef.t [likely Indifferent]
– In the instance of a superscripted abbreviation, the abbreviation is rendered with a period. Example: Gs Maria = G.s Maria
AGE — CONDITION vs. NOTE
– Ages are noted in the Age column only when an actual number is given
– Otherwise, general ages are recorded in either the Condition or Notes column, according to the following:
– a boy, a girl, a child = Note
– Old, superannuated = Condition
– Young = Condition
– Middle aged = Condition
– If information regarding age that would be considered a note is included in the Occupation, then the information is not repeated in the Notes column. For example: under Occupation, Jack Straw is listed as a “Doctors boy.” Jack Straw’s status as a boy is included in the Occupation, and so “Boy” would not be included in the Notes column.
– In general, every effort has been made to follow the text of the original document where possible. This includes capitalizations that do not follow modern style, and vice versa. This frequently comes into play in the Occupation and Condition columns. For example: “Grass Gang” or “a Sore leg”.
DITTOS AND GROUP HEADINGS
– In order to facilitate database searches that do not adhere to the order of the original document, instances of a “Ditto” on the original document have been replaced in the corresponding cell with the thing copied. Example: If, in the Occupation column, Quaco is listed as a “Field Worker” and, directly beneath Quaco’s entry, Quamin’s Occupation is listed as “Ditto,” then Quamin’s occupation is listed as “Field Worker,” not “Ditto.”
– When the thing copied is an overarching description, the original has been followed as closely as possible while still maintaining clarity of meaning. If the meaning is not readily discernible, a brief explanation is offered. For example, see Hope 1788: On lines 22 to 107, in the Age column, the age range 20-25 is given; this age range is fairly self-explanatory and so can be listed as is. On lines 22 to 55, however, only one condition, “mostly able” is given. Because “mostly able” on its own would be open to interpretation — the question of whether the individual is mostly able, or the overarching heading is “mostly able” — an explanation is given, in this case, the condition column reads “listed under the heading ‘mostly able’.”
– Guesses are indicated with brackets and questions marks; the question mark always precedes the guess except in the Standardized Name column, where it follows.
– To indicate a guess regarding a letter or letters within a word or name, only the letter or letters in question are bracketed. For example: [?Je]mmy
– In instances when additional information is added to a column, the entries are separated by commas. For example: In the Occupation column, Peter is listed under the general heading “Watch.” However, Peter’s entry in the ledger also notes that he is a watch “at the swamp.” The entry in the Occupation column, therefore, is “Watch, at the swamp”.
– In order to facilitate smooth XML translation, use commas, not backslashes, to separate elements — do we need to do a search and replace for backslashes in the Name as Written columns?