Help transcribe our collections and Pitch in!

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State Library digital collections are now on the online transcription platform, DigiVol. You can contribute by sharing your knowledge and expertise and transcribing our digital collections of diaries, letters and books. It doesn’t matter where you are or what your skill level is; anyone can Pitch in!

To start transcribing, create an account. Or you can login to DigiVol using your Facebook, Twitter or Google account.

You can pick up a project at any stage and start transcribing. Documents are also checked after their transcription in DigiVol.

Online volunteers are presented with tutorials to help you get started. You can also email us at

Archibald Meston Indigenous Vocabulary Book 1898-1903 Vol. 6

Archibald Meston was a journalist, poet, botanist, historian, politician (MLA Rosewood 1878-1882) and amateur ethnologist. He was also appointed Protector of Aborigines 1897-1903, a position later held by his son Harold. Meston had a lifetime interest in Aboriginal culture and the languages of the indigenous people and his 'Report on the Aboriginals of Queensland' was the basis of the Aboriginal Protection Act of 1897, the law which regulated Queensland's indigenous people into the 1970s. His actions as Protector, especially in respect of the Fraser Island Reserve, were often controversial.

The primary focus of the transcription of these journals is to make linguistic material accessible, not just for linguistic research but for community members who are working to revive their community languages

Read and transcribe: This assignment is the first of several notebooks kept by Archibald Meston during his time as Chief Protector of Aborigines, Queensland. The notebook contains miscellaneous notes, including geographical descriptions and a comparative vocabulary of Aboriginal words collected at various police stations across Queensland, e.g. Gilbert River, Tinaroo, Nerang, Montalbion, Pine River, Strathmore, Camooweal etc.

Get started:  Archibald Meston Indigenous Vocabulary Book 1898-1903 Vol. 6

Difficulty: Experience preferred. Please make sure you read the tutorial for this project.

Status: 17% completed

Red Cross Society, Queensland Division Records, 1916-1935

The Red Cross Society was established in Australia within days of the outbreak of WW1 in 1914. Within the first month, Queenslanders mobilised to form 196 branches across the state.

State Library holds the minute books of meetings held by the Red Cross Society, Queensland Division between 1915-1935. The meetings were held in the British Medical Association rooms in Brisbane and the minutes include details of those present, correspondence, hospital services and, during the war period, the services offered to members of the services and returned men. In the later minutes, the business of the meetings is concerned with aid to individuals, hospitals, returned servicemen, institutions, and the Junior Red Cross.

Read and transcribe: This assignment is to transcribe the typed minutes of meetings held between 1921 and 1925.

Get started: Red Cross Society, Queensland Division Records, 1919-1920

Difficulty: All levels of experience. A good place to start learning how to transcribe.

Status: We've got a live one - 4% transcribed

Harold Colquhoun WW1 Collection 1914-1919

Harold and his family lived in Mareeba and he enlisted on the 23 September 1914 in Rockhampton. He was assigned to the 15th Infantry Battalion, B Company, as a sergeant. Harold was at the first landing at Gallipoli on the 25 April 1915 and on the 29 May was shot through the lung during a bayonet charge at Quinn’s Post. After recovering in Egypt he returned to Gallipoli and was killed in action two days later on the 27 August 1915.

Read and transcribe: Postcards, letters and official papers of young Anzac Harold Colquhoun, 19 year Gallipoli veteran from Far North Queensland.

Get started: Harold Colquhoun WW1 Collection 1914-1919

Difficulty: Experience preferred.

Status: Available now - 61% transcribed

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