Civil War Historians Sought for Times Topics

Times Topics, North Korea's Nuclear ProgramThe New York Times is seeking the help of Civil War historians for their Times Topics project.

The Times Topics site is organized into about 15,000 subjects, which pull from past New York Times articles to make pages that cover historical topics. Some examples include: North Korea’s nuclear program, the W.P.A., Pearl Harbor, and the 9/11 attacks.

While currently the articles included only go back to 1981, there are efforts underway to digitize the paper all the way back to 1851. This will allow Times Topics to really show the Times’ “entire body of coverage.” Eventually they would like to create 15,000 historical pages, and the first step toward this goal is to “create several hundred Topic pages devoted to different aspects of the Civil War, creating separate pages on key battles, generals, political leaders and subjects like slavery, conscription and the development of ironclads.”

This is where the help of Civil War historians comes in. The Times is looking for “some expert help in deciding what topics to choose.” If you’re a Civil War historian who’d like to contribute, contact John O’Neil at joonei@nytimes.com for more information and instructions.

Also check out some of the other online projects the Times is working on: the Times Traveler and the Times Machine. We recently profiled these projects on AHA Today.

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