Documentary Editing, Association for



Paul Machlis

Date of this Version


Document Type



Newsletter of the Association for Documentary Editing, Volume 5, Number 3, September 1983. ISSN 0196-7134


© Association for Documentary Editing, 1983. Used by permission.


Effective organizing and indexing of historical and literary texts are essential to the work of documentary editing. Card files, typed lists, and computer printouts help us count and classify documents and provide access to materials by date, subject, owner, and other features. In doing so, they offer editors some control over the tens of thousands of documents that form each of the editions. Maintaining tools of document control is not our central work, but it is prerequisite to the publication of accurate and thoroughly annotated texts.

The following remarks concern the use of computers at four projects to produce instruments of document c0ntrol that are more helpful, efficient, and flexible than their card file alternatives. I will introduce some basic concepts of 6 computer-assisted control, describe each system, and offer general comment on their differences and similarities.