READ THIS - IT COULD SAVE YOU A LOT OF TIME!
Several hundred letters to and from Wallace have so far been transcribed by students from Harvard University and others. The transcripts are currently saved as separate MS Word 2003 documents, although ultimately we will probably convert them to a non-proprietary format.
Because our transcription protocol has changed since many of the transcripts were produced I faced the unpleasant task of having to individually open and alter the formatting of text in hundreds of files - a job which would have taken me days to do. I therefore decided to try to find a Freeware program on the Web which has similar functionality to the native MS Word Find & Replace function, but which (unlike Word 2003) allows batch processing (i.e. the ability to process multiple files at once). I thought that such a program would be relatively easy to find, but how wrong I was! There are many Freeware programmes which enable users to find and replace specified words in multiple Word documents at once, but there are none (that I could find at least) which allow users to find formatting and replace it with different formatting (e.g. find all words in italics and change them to underlined non-italicised text). After wasting a lot of time searching I gave up and decided to investigate Shareware programmes instead. After testing quite a number of these I discovered Advance Word Find & Replace v4.0 (see http://www.technocomsolutions.com/advancefindreplacehelp.htm) and after playing around with the free version of it I decided to buy a copy. It seemed to do everything I wanted and a lot more, but alas, I discovered that the only thing it couldn't do was something I needed i.e. to find italic text and replace it with non-italic text! In frustration I wrote to the Technocom Solutions team who are responsible for the program, and asked whether they could suggest a 'solution'. A day later they sent me an updated program which works very nicely - finding and replacing italic text with whatever formatting you like! I am very impressed with Technocom's customer service (and now that this feature has been added) I can highly recommend Advance Word Find & Replace v4.0 to anyone who has to edit many word-processor documents en-mass. The program is powerful and easy to use, and it could save you a huge amount of un-necessary effort...
Here is a screen-shot of the program: