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Herencia: Review Challenge Recap and Announcement

Brief challenging an ordinance enacted by the city of Tortosa concerning the crime of theft. [Ca. XVII century]. Coming in Herencia, Briefs: Criminal Cases, Phase 2, October 2020.

[Click here for the Spanish version of this post / Haz clic aquí para la versión en español.]

Last week, the Law Library of Congress challenged you to help us provide complete transcriptions for all remaining documents in the Laws & Statutes: Agriculture, Conservation, Hunting and Fishing section of Herencia: Centuries of Spanish Legal Documents. We couldn’t be more proud of the work our virtual volunteers have done in such a short time! We launched our challenge last Monday with 140 pages remaining and we are thrilled to report that all pages in this section are now complete. Thanks to your efforts, many more items in this unique foreign-language collection will be digitally searchable for the first time in history, making them more open to discovery and more accessible to those with cognitive and sight disabilities who use screen readers.

Now that this short challenge is over, we would like to announce the next step in the Herencia campaign. As part of our celebration of National Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs annually from September 15 through October 15, the Law Library intends to release Phase 2 of our campaign in early October 2020. Phase 2 will comprise another third of the total collection and will include seven new projects for a total of nearly 900 additional unique documents in Spanish, Latin, and Catalan. With Phase 2, transcribers and reviewers can expect to see many projects from the Briefs and Notarial Instruments subsections of the collection, which include a range of documents dealing with criminal cases, family and domestic matters, ecclesiastical law and jurisdiction, and the collection of taxes and debts, all from 15th-19th century Spain.

Stay tuned for the next batch of Herencia documents later this year. In the meantime, we hope that you will keep up the great work of transcribing and reviewing the remaining documents in Phase 1 as our campaign rolls on. If you discovered anything that interested you during last week’s challenge, or at any point in your experience with the collection, please share it with us on Twitter (@LawLibCongress and @CROWD_LOC) or on our History Hub page.

Remember, by participating as a volunteer transcriber or reviewer you are adding to the Library’s collection and helping to make legal history more discoverable to all. No specific time commitment or qualifications are required. You do not even need to create an account to start transcribing, although reviewers do need to log in. Contribute at your own pace and at times that are convenient for you. Try it out!

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