Acronyms and Abbreviations used in Finding Aids

Below are some of the acronyms used by the Manuscripts and Special Collections Unit in some of their finding aids, particularly to describe autograph materials, i.e., documents written and/or signed by a particular person.

A.D. - autographed document
A handwritten document that was not signed.
A.D.S. - autographed document signed
A document (other than a letter) that was hand-written and signed by the person named.
A.L. - autographed letter
A.L.S. - autographed letter signed
A letter that was hand-written and signed by the person named.
A.N.S. - autographed note signed
Brief message hand-written and signed by the same person.
A.S. - autograph signature
C.D.V. - carte de visite
A thin paper photograph mounted on a thicker paper card of about 2.5 by 4 inches, popularly used as visiting cards in the U.S. in the 1860s.
D - document
D.S. - document signed
A document (other than a letter) that was printed or hand-written by someone else, but signed by the person named.
EL - indicate a folio size or extra-large document
L.S. - letter signed
A letter that was hand-written by someone else, but signed by the person named.
Mss. - manuscripts
ca. - circa
"in approximately" or "around," referring to a date
n.d. - no date
An undated document whose date cannot be determined by its content.
n.p. - no place
The place where the letter or document was written is unknown.
n.s. - note signed
Brief message signed by the person named.
s.n. - sine nomine
name of publisher unknown .
T.L.I. - Typed letter initialed
T.L.S. - Typed letter signed
v.d. - various dates
Last Updated: February 12, 2014