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Editorial Policy and Encoding Guidelines


The Nebraska Stories of Humanity: Holocaust Survivors & WWII Veterans, Network Portal & Educational Website provides a central and dynamic space for documentation on individuals who settled in the state following World War II. We encourage our visitors to explore this portal for personal, education, and research purposes under the guidance of the site’s Terms.

The materials in the Nebraska Stories of Humanity portal, a project of the University of Nebraska Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, have been gathered from various private and public collections, including holdings on Holocaust information from international institutions. As the editorial staff continues to build upon existing story collections, content to expand additional individual narratives will be updated on an ongoing basis. We strive to publish these materials with the proper context and accuracy. Taking into consideration personal memory and interpretation of historical events by each individual, content from war narratives may present varied versions with each circumstance.

Sensitive Materials

The Nebraska Stories of Humanity portal works to provide a faithful record of the personal collection of individuals highlighted in addition to honorably representing the disparate materials included in our research. It is critical to note that some items in this archive reflect the devastation of upheaval, separation, and murder caused by the events of WWII. Inappropriate use of artifacts from this collection is unacceptable and inexcusable to the memory of those lost. Our editorial policy requires an accurate representation of this material. See Conditions of Use for further information and citations.

Document Selection

Content for this collection was selected in collaboration with stakeholders who are familiar with the narratives of the highlighted individuals. The first five stories in the prototype exemplify diverse experiences during the Holocaust in addition to geographic representation of various parts of Nebraska. Items included in their stories provide insight into their journey and provide contributions to historical knowledge about the time period. Collection is on-going; therefore the archive is selective rather than comprehensive. As international Holocaust institutions continue to expand access to the public and items are collected from families and community contributions, the stories included in Nebraska Stories of Humanity portal will also grow.


Select materials have been translated from the original language. In some cases, these translations incorporate annotations to clarify cultural references and idiomatic expressions.

Transcription and Optical Character Recognition

After scanning or photography, individual documents are assessed to determine the best means of deriving a base text, either through Optical Character Recognition (for print materials such as books or newspaper articles) or transcription (for handwritten materials such as letters). Printed materials are OCR'd using AbbyyFineReader, Adobe Acrobat Pro, or similar, and then proofread against the original materials. Handwritten text is transcribed, and then proofread against the originals. Spelling and grammar are retained to the greatest extent possible. Deletions, insertions, or handwritten notes have been retained and marked. End-line hyphenation has been removed to aid in readability and in the discovery process. When available, images of the original materials are displayed to allow for users to view the original layout and to allow for interpretation.

Annotation and Regularization

Annotations have not been added throughout the portal, but are available on select items where clarification or additional information may be especially important. Additional annotations may be added as need arises. Additionally, Library of Congress people, place, and subject headings have been added to aid in discovery. Where no LC authority is available, we have attempted to regularize names based on the person's own spelling of their name or on government documents such as census records or death certificates.


Nebraska Stories of Humanity follows international standards for the encoding of all data and metadata contained on the portal. Textual materials are encoded according to the Text Encoding Initiative's P5 Guidelines. TEI is the international standard used by a broad range of scholars including humanists, librarians, linguists, and social scientists to encode textual materials. TEI markup allows computers to process and display texts, and facilitates searching and interoperability. The xml file for each encoded document is available for viewing and download.

Dublin Core

The metadata for non-textual materials such as photographs and postcards are entered into a spreadsheet using the Dublin Core Metadata schema. The fifteen-element Dublin Core has achieved international, cross-disciplinary dissemination as part of the Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH). The core element are: Creator, Contributor, Publisher, Title, Date, Language, Format, Subject, Description, Identifier, Relation, Source, Type, Coverage, and Rights.