Most digitization depends on costly item-level description for search and access. However, capturing such descriptions for content in extensive collections is often not feasible. To overcome this barrier to online access for large manuscript collections, the authors developed a method for linking digitized items into the EAD finding aid, which speeds content to the Web at a fraction of the usual cost. In the NHPRC-funded grant Digitizing the Septimus D. Cabaniss Papers, the authors demonstrated this model and developed the work flows and open-source software for implementation. This article assesses cost effectiveness and reports on a usability test with primarily novice users.
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