Montana Digital Newspaper Project Assistant

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Created: April 5, 2013


This position is funded by a National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) grant to the Montana Historical Society to participate in the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP). During the two-year grant period, the Montana Digital Newspaper Project will digitize 100,000 Montana newspaper pages published between the years 1864 and 1922. The project team will collect and record publishing data and other facts about thousands of late 19th- and early 20th-century newspaper pages on microfilm and in digital form. Ultimately, the digitized newspapers will be submitted to the Library of Congress and uploaded to the Chronicling America web site at

For this position we offer yearly benefits, which include:

A contribution of $8,796/year towards health, life, dental, and optional vision insurance;
Choice between two defined retirement benefit plans and optional 457(b) deferred compensation;
Fifteen days paid vacation, twelve days sick leave, and ten paid holidays.
(Note: This position is not related to library automation systems or subscription databases.)

The Montana Historical Society seeks a Project Assistant for the Montana Digital Newspaper Project, a grant-funded project ending on August 31, 2013 with probable extension through August 2015. The Project Assistant is primarily responsible for assisting in the digitization of historical newspapers. To a lesser extent, the Project Assistant will also support the digital conversion of other materials, such as books or manuscripts. Essential duties and responsibilities include:

·         Closely examine historical newspapers on microfilm, accurately recording data about issues and pages using established workflow and tools (30%).
·         Create and enter technical, descriptive, and preservation metadata in, and help maintain, databases, spreadsheets, and other applications; run queries and generate reports (30%).
·         Perform quality control on digital images, metadata, Optical Character Recognition-generated text, and other deliverables provided by vendors (20%).
·         Move or copy large numbers of digital images to and from MHS servers, external storage devices, and the “cloud.” (10%).
·         Prepare shipments of microfilm and hard drives according to established procedures (5%).
·         Other duties as assigned (5%).
REQUIRED: The candidate will have experience creating and entering metadata independently and accurately into a data-control system, such as a database or digital collection-management application. Also required is experience creating, managing or evaluating digital images in a library, archive, or museum setting. The candidate must be comfortable working independently; must possess strong organizational abilities; and must attend to details while working to meet the goals of a complex, long-term project.

DESIRABLE: (1) Experience using Olive Active Paper, ContentDM, or equivalent software; (2) Experience moving many (1000+) electronic files to and from servers and physical media (e.g., external hard drives). (3) Experience creating and/or editing HTML or XML.
REQUIRED: Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree and have completed all coursework toward a master’s degree in library, information, or archival science (all-but-thesis okay).


Published: Friday, April 5, 2013 16:30 UTC

Last updated: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 23:45 UTC