American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia

The American Philosophical Society was founded by Benjamin Franklin in 1743.

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The American Philosophical Society (APS) was the first learned society to be founded in the United States. Its members have included the likes of George Washington, Thomas Paine, Alexander von Humboldt, Charles Darwin, Louis Pasteur and Thomas Edison.

The APS holds some remarkable collections, especially regarding scientific advancement and early American history. They aim to create bespoke sites for specific high value collections and are especially interested in applying Handwritten Text Recognition (HTR) technology to manuscript materials. The immediate focus is on creation of a site for the William Parker Foulke Papers, 1840-1865.

A product of the distinctive culture of reform in antebellum Philadelphia, William Parker Foulke trained as an attorney and had diverse interests, including natural history, mental philosophy and penal reform. Amongst the collection can be found lectures, correspondence and diaries concerning the American Colonization Society and arctic exploration.

Quartex provides a vehicle to increase visibility of this collection on a bespoke open-access website. Series I of the William Parker Foulke Papers has undergone conservation and digitisation, with all digital images and metadata ingested into Quartex and a new website created around collection-specific requirements.

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