The Handbook of Latin American Studies, together with its Internet version, HLAS Online, and its CD-ROM version, HLAS/CD (v. 1.0, v. 2.0) would not be where it is today without the appreciated support and financial assistance from various individuals and organizations.
Converting the Handbook of Latin American Studies from a print to a web-based resource was a two-stage process: 1) the print-to-electronic retrospective conversion of the first 49 volumes, originally published from 1935-1989, and their publication on CD-ROM, together with the data from volumes 50-53; and 2) the merging of the retrospective data from the CD-ROM with the current database (from 50 onward) on the Internet. Launched in July 1997, the HLAS Online offers a database containing more than 300,000 records.
Fundación MAPFRE América, now the Fundación Histórica Tavera (Madrid, Spain), an organization dedicated to promoting Latin American studies and disseminating digital information about the Americas, digitized volumes 1-49 and converted them to CD-ROM format. We wish to extend special recognition to the foundation's president, Ignacio Hernando de Larramendi. Without his valiant initiative, generous support, and boundless enthusiasm, the retrospective conversion would not have been possible. We also extend our gratitude to the foundation's Publicaciones Digitales team, in particular to Joaquín van den Brule and Anunciada Colón for their exemplary work in creating the HLAS/CD. We also wish to acknowledge the support of Luis De Palma, Javier Alvarez, and their team of programmers. This collaborative effort between Spain and the United States, the Foundation and the Library, with the goal of electronically disseminating information about Latin American studies, would have delighted the Handbook's founding editor Lewis U. Hanke (1905-1993), a great admirer of Spain, father of Latin American studies in the United States, and a remarkable visionary.
We are also grateful to Richard Ekman, Secretary and Program Officer for The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, for providing additional support for the retrospective conversion.
The second stage in the HLAS Online project was made possible thanks to the generous financial support of the children of Lewis U. Hanke. We also wish to acknowledge the constant support of Christopher Lutz, Director of Plumsock Mesoamerican Studies and the Institute for Civil Society. Without his backing, the timely completion of the project would not have been possible.
The Library of Congress's Information Technology Services (ITS) directorate deserves great praise for its earlier role in automating the Handbook and for its current assistance in mounting the combined Handbook databases on the World Wide Web. In particular, we are grateful to Mary Ambrosio, Stan Lerner, and Dean Wilder for their unending patience, good humor, and esprit de corps in resolving the many difficult problems that arose. The three were responsible for adapting the Inquery search engine to permit fielded search and display across two very different sets of data, standardizing the retrieval and display of diacritics, and providing many other sophisticated enhancements to the search engine and its interface. Their technical advice was invaluable, as was that of Claudia McNellis, who was instrumental in guiding HLAS automation efforts. We are grateful to Claudia for her willingness to serve in an extracurricular capacity as the Handbook's primary technical consultant across several very different stages of automation.
The Hispanic Division component of the Handbook's Web design team also deserves much credit: Randolf M. Wells, Assistant to the Editor for Internet Conversion in 1995, for conceiving, designing, and single-handedly launching the project; Tracy North, HLAS Webmaster since 1996, who very effectively implemented, tested, verified, and improved the initial specifications with the utmost efficiency, dedication, and professionalism; and Katherine D. McCann, Assistant to the Editor, for laboriously ensuring the conciseness, clarity, and editorial consistency of our user interface in all three languages.
A special, and heartfelt, thanks goes to SALALM (Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials), whose generous grant has helped us make the transition to a new print production system and make HLAS records conform more closely to US MARC standards. SALALM funds were used, in part, to create a new 787 MARC field that will allow HLAS Online to include more cross references in the records. In addition, the grant facilitates the transition to an XML-based production system by providing training for HLAS staff. We are deeply indebted to SALALM for this contribution.
We also wish to recognize the contribution of several Library of Congress fellows and interns, particularly that of Miguel Valladares, who was the Hispanic Division's 1996 Madison Junior Fellow. Thanks to his expert knowledge of database design and user needs, Mr. Valladares was able to improve the HLAS Online user interface as well as its English-language help screens. In addition, Mr. Valladares translated the final version of the help screens into Spanish. Victoria Funes, a visiting librarian from the Universidad de Córdoba, cheerfully took on the tedious task of troubleshooting the final HLAS Online pages and patiently identifying and correcting errors in the serial abbreviations lists and tables of contents pages. María Lidia Buompadre, a CONICET fellow from its Instituto de Investigaciones Geohistóricas in Resistencia, Argentina, collaborated on the initial design of the user interface as well as on the translation of the early help screens into Spanish. We also wish to thank William "Niko" Trentini, a former Hispanic Division intern for his translation of the help pages into Portuguese. He was succeeded by Bethany Letalien, the first intern from the Luso-American Development Foundation in Lisbon. Two staff members of the Library of Congress field office in Rio de Janeiro, Frida Garbati and Margarida Dias, helped translate and edit a preliminary version of the Portuguese interface. Final revisions were done by Brazilian lawyer and volunteer Georgiana Franco Forrester and Célia Maria Ribeiro, a fellow from the VITAE Foundation and librarian at the Campinas State University, under the supervision of the Hispanic Division's Luso-Brazilian specialist Iêda Siqueira Wiarda. All of these revisions were coordinated by Tracy North, Assistant to the Editor and HLAS Webmaster.
We are also grateful to the three university presses that have published the Handbook over more than half a century, The University of Texas Press, Harvard University Press and the University Presses of Florida, for permission to include data scanned from their print volumes of the Handbook. We especially want to recognize the support of Joanna Hitchcock, the Director of The University of Texas Press, our current publisher, for her ongoing support of the print edition of the Handbook.
Finally, we owe a great deal to past and present managers at the Library of Congress who supported us during this arduous process: Donald C. Curran, Ellen Hahn, Winston Tabb, and Carolyn T. Brown. We particularly wish to recognize the indispensable support of Hispanic Division Chief Georgette Dorn for her faith in our capacity to carry out this project, her tenacious optimism, and her conviction that, notwithstanding the obstacles, our dream to make all HLAS volumes readily searchable on the Internet would become reality. Dolores Moyano Martin, Editor of the Handbook from 1977 to 1999, and P. Sue Mundell, Assistant Editor from 1989 to 1998, were key in launching, and in large part realizing, the idea of HLAS Online.
Without a doubt the prestige and popularity of the Handbook can be attributed to the extraordinary support and dedication of our indispensable, erudite contributors, whose labors ad honorem over more than 60 years have been essential to the publication of the print edition of the Handbook, as well as its 21st-century online metamorphosis.
Lawrence Boudon, Editor
Katherine D. McCann, Assistant Editor