A Video Preview of the Digital Edition of the Territorial Papers of the United States
Since the early 1940s, Readex has been the leading innovator in the publication of historical American resources. We started our work with massive projects, including Early American Imprints, based on the Evans and Shaw-Shoemaker bibliographies, and Early American Newspapers.
Back then, the medium was microprint and then microform, and it often took ten…or twenty…or thirty years to complete a single product. Many source institutions had to be visited; many documents had to be filmed; and many license agreements had to be drawn up. New technologies had to be developed, too, to ensure that the original images were captured as effectively as possible. These early major collections later became online digital offerings, of course. The ones mentioned above proved to be absolutely foundational back in the early days of digitization.
Today, Readex is extremely proud to be the developer of one more foundational product: Territorial Papers of the United States. This new collection—which we are releasing in four series beginning in June 2018—captures the essential history of more than half of the states of the United States when they were still territories. From Florida to California to Alaska and just about everywhere else in between, Territorial Papers is the crucial—and until now, undigitized—record of a growing, expanding America.
The date range covered is astonishing—the late eighteenth century to the mid twentieth century. The materials themselves are amazing: Native American records, negotiations, and treaties; judicial proceedings; population data; financial statistics; land records; military records; official government correspondence; and much more. The multi-disciplinary value of the content is nearly endless: political history, Native American history, military history, cultural history—to name just a few.
The materials we are publishing are the complete Territorial records of the State Department (which was founded to manage the territories); the Interior Department; multi-agency departments; and the United States Senate. In total, tens of thousands of items hitherto locked up in microfilm are now revealed digitally in all their brilliance.
Readex is delighted to share this preview of Territorial Papers. It’s not the actual digital collection, but we believe it offers a rich impression of the product that will soon be released. We invite you to be the first to encounter this vital history.