How you can help The Landmark Project

When you think of old books, you typically picture a setting of back corners of a venerable library, with the worn-out books occupying countless dusty shelves, with no recent fingers or having graced the pages.

Many of the books that are now featured on this site started there. Through exemplary efforts, ancient tomes were discovered and carefully photocopied, to be preserved on newer parchment, thereby providing a new lease on life. In many instances this photocopy was then scanned into a digital format, thereby preserving it from further degrading or losing its invaluable contents.

The scanning process, however, only completes a small portion of the required work to bring what you now see here. Digitally scanned books are mere images, incapable of formatting, conversion, or even text searches.

Compare the following:

Electronic Image

Electronic Text At the age of nineteen Renwick finished his university
education. That year he witnessed the affecting
sight of Donald Cargill's martyrdom. The execution
was public; curiosity and sympathy had collected
an immense throng around the scaffold, to see the
old minister die. Renwick was in the crowd. He

For these documents to be of true and lasting value, this final step of converting image to text is immensly critical. This site would not be possible without the tremendous work of the Distributed Proofreading community.

Distributed Proofreaders provides high-quality conversion of page images to page text, complementing and extending the work done today's best OCR (optical character recognition) programs. The Distributed Proofreaders community is a group of volunteers who donate nothing more than their time and energy to the preservation of old books, by painstakingly comparing each page, word-by-word.

This valuable resource is utilized by a wide variety of people and purposes, some have goals of converting books of particular languages, others of particular genres, etc. Due to the age and sometimes poor condition of the books we pursue, they are often less-favoured than many of the other books. Therefore, they get neglected and end up taking weeks and months to complete. We need more interest in the books we are promoting. More eyes and more devoted people helping out, to keep the flow of books moving, to keep the new books coming to this site.

It does not require any great commitment of time or any special talents. Simply a desire to see these books preserved for posterity and also make them many times more valuable for our own profit and edification.

We are always looking for new proofreaders to help out. Please see the following links for more information: