We had a similar situation and here's what we did (it was a VERY big

We sent the cards out to be digitized and the data captured in database
fields. We did a lot of back and forth to make sure the vendor understood
the variations in data structure and they used a combination of OCR and
human transcription to account for hand written notes

We organized the cards according to collection and then exported reports
from the database to build inventories for EAD collections.

We uploaded the EAD to Archivists Toolkit (now I would use ArchivesSpace).

We then indexed our EAD with XTF (I adore XTF and use it for all kinds of
indexing - )

In a pinch, you could just structure XTF to index whatever fields you want
and bypass the EAD part.

On Wed, Jun 6, 2018 at 10:55 AM, Ken Irwin <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Hi folks,
> Our archives-without-an-archivist currently has an index in card-catalog
> form, with somewhat variably-structured data (i.e. there's some
> consistency, but it's a little wiggly and has the occasional handwritten
> notes and who knows what all else).
> We'd like to make the index searchable online. I'm trying to figure out
> what  (good, easy, low-overhead?) platform that already exists for doing
> this. We do not currently have a plan to digitize the contents, but
> something that would support the transition into more digitized contents
> would be useful. Something that was designed primarily for digitizing
> documents might work if it wouldn't founder on contents that were mostly
> just shelf-locations with a line or two of description.
> Free and/or open-source preferred, but we'd look at low-cost solutions too.
> Does anyone have experience with software that sounds like it could meet
> our needs?
> Thanks,
> Ken