Matthew Vassar Papers


The Matthew Vassar Papers project consists of autobiographies, autographs, correspondence, diaries, maps, and photographs related to the founder of Vassar College.

Finding aid available at:

This project will be funded by the Goodman grant.


We propose to digitize Series 1 (Materials concerning Vassar College), with more series as time / funding permits.


There are 225 listed items in Series 1.  A conservative estimate suggests 338 items.

Estimates and assumptions:


  • Each item contains one page (most likely erroneous)
  • Each item must have recto/verso imaged, including envelopes


338 items x 2 (recto/verso) = 676 images

Archival images most likely 40MB each, service copies at 30MB each.

Storage requirements (based on imaging specs, below)

338 TIFFs @ 40MB = 13,520 MB = ~ 13GB

338 TIFFs @ 30MB = 10,140 MB = ~ 10GB

Imaging specs

All imaging is for paper; a mix of flatbed scanning and copystand will be used.  Special handling required in consultation with Special Collections and Archives.

  • Archival scans at 400ppi, 24 bit color, TIFF
  • Service copies at 400ppi, 8 bit color, 4000px on largest dimension, TIFF
  • JPG copies not needed

Naming convention

Files will follow the standard practice:


where folder, item, and page will be left string-padded to three places.

Project prefix: mvp (for “Matthew Vassar Papers”)

N.B.: the finding aid has some folders ending with the letter “A”.  In these cases, we will treat the “A” folder as a second item.


  1. Folder 2.16 to James Grant Wilson, 27 Jun 1861 (1 letter)
    mvp_002_016_001_001a.tif — archival
    mvp_002_016_001_001.tif — service
  2. Folder 14.467A Matthew Vassar, Co.: Correspondence: Vassar to Dear Sir, 19 Nov 1838 (1 letter)
    mvp_014_467_002_001a.tif — archival
    mvp_014_467_002_001.tif — service
  3. Folder 6.186 from Carrie F. Stowe, 3 Jun 1862 (1 letter and photograph)
    mvp_006_186_001_001a.tif — letter, archival
    mvp_006_186_001_001.tif — letter, archival
    mvp_006_186_001_002a.tif — photograph, archival
    mvp_006_186_001_002.tif — photograph, archival

Metadata considerations

  1. Names should be cross-referenced with LC’s authority file for named creators and correspondents, etc.
  2. Standard MODS profile: title, date, identifier, creator, correspondent, rights management.

Other considerations:

  1. Some folders have photocopies or duplicates of items in other boxes.  Should we image these as well?  E.g., Folder 5.148 to Rev. Charles A. Raymond, typescripts of letters in folders 129-147, 30 Jul 1862 – 3 Apr 1864.
  2. We need accurate counts of items for better storage estimates.