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MarineLives project launch

MarineLives is a collaborative volunteer driven project. The project started as a spinoff from a National Archives hackathon in early 2012.

We are dedicated to the collaborative transcription, linkage and enrichment of primary manuscripts from the English High Court of Admiralty, 1627-1677. The original Admiralty Court records are held at the National Archives in Kew.

We are interested in discussions with libraries and archives internationally and in the United Kingdom to explore manuscripts and printed document collections which complement English High Court of Admiralty Court records thematically.

Our thematic focus is on marine lives, but with the emphasis on lives touched by the marine (mariners, shore trades, merchants), rather than on pure "marine history", and on the interconnectedness and intermingling of marine lives in terms of materials, language, commerce and correspondence.

The project is led and advised by academics and members of the general public.

Currently, we have 12,757 text pages and 12,167 images available and nearly six million words of full text transcriptions on the MarineLives wiki.

Finding aids created by volunteers are available on topics as diverse as Bad Behaviour and Invective; Inns Taverns and Victualling Houses; and Slavery.

This summer we have developed a C17th ship quantitative database, drawing on High Court of Admiralty and other records. Copies of this database are available on request and without charge. Version 8.9.15, issued on 18/10/2017, contains quantitative and textual data on 1107 ships, with full lists of sources.

To learn more, to initiate a discussion about potential collaboration, or to volunteer please contact us