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Early Modern Digital Itineraries: Transforming Tools for Premodern Travel

Co-PIs: Rachel Midura (History) & Michael J. Stamper (Library)

Collaborator: Jo Wolf, Virginia Tech & Harvard University History Department

With Early Modern Digital Itineraries (EmDigIt), we propose to transform a key primary source base — published itinerary books — into refined data and digital tools for understanding and recreating historical travel. Small, cheaply printed itinerary books written by professional travelers indicated precisely which routes to utilize, where to stay, which sites to see, and even provided tools for navigating foreign customs, language and currency. With the support of the digital humanities collaboration grant from Virginia Tech libraries, co-PIs Rachel Midura and Michael Stamper worked with collaborator Jo Wolf to refine: 1) a workflow from an automatically transcribed and hand-tagged text to tidied, reconciled and linked data and 2) a wireframe for a web-based data exploration utilizing visualization and simulation.