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Check out the SC State Library's collection of works on Oral History
Recommended Online Resources
"How To Do Oral History" by the Smithsonian Institution Archives
The Smithsonian Institution Archives captures, preserves, and shares with the public the history of this extraordinary Institution. From its inception in 1846 to the present, the records of the history of the Institution—its people, its programs, its research, and its stories—have been gathered, organized, and disseminated so that everyone can learn about the Smithsonian and its role in American history, scientific exploration, and with the promotion of international cultural understanding.
Oral History Association
Since 1966, the Oral History Association has served as the principal membership organization for people committed to the value of oral history. OHA engages with policy makers, educators, and others to help foster best practices and encourage support for oral history and oral historians. With an international membership, OHA serves a broad and diverse audience including teachers, students, community historians, archivists, librarians, and filmmakers.
"Remote Interviewing Resources" by the Oral History Association
"The following resources are a product of the COVID-19 pandemic and the requirement to cease face-to-face interviewing for the health of both narrator and interviewer. By March 2020, many of us found ourselves sheltering in place, trying to learn how to do our jobs from home. For those working in oral history, remote interviewing became a pathway to continue essential oral history work. This guide is meant to be a resource to practitioners as they work through the numerous questions that arise with this method."
Example Questions for Oral Histories from Genealogy.com
"People say that talking to your plants can make them grow, and the same is true for family trees. While it's not always necessary to record oral histories to get the basic vital statistics about your ancestors, you may find that interviewing your family members provides some of the most interesting information about your family. Learning about hobbies, family traditions, and personalities can really bring the names in your family tree to life! Making the most of your interview means keeping an ear open for good stories, and also asking follow-up questions on the details like dates and places. Below, you'll find some tips on how to best set up and record the interview, and some sample questions to get you started on the deeper roots of your family tree."
Documenting Oral Histories of the American South
"'Oral Histories of the American South' is a three-year project to select, digitize and make available 500 oral history interviews gathered by the Southern Oral History Program (SOHP). These 500 are being selected from a collection of over 4,000 interviews, housed at the Southern Historical Collection, that cover a range of fascinating topics. This project is made possible by a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services."
Oral History in the Digital Age
New technologies offer great potential for advancing the practice of oral history. However, they also introduce new questions and issues. Michigan State University, through the MATRIX Center and the Michigan State University Museum, will partner with the Smithsonian Institution Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage, the Library of Congress’ American Folklife Center, the American Folklore Society, and the Oral History Association to recommend standards and best practices for digital oral history.
StoryCorps’ mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories in order to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world. We do this to remind one another of our shared humanity, to strengthen and build the connections between people, to teach the value of listening, and to weave into the fabric of our culture the understanding that everyone’s story matters. At the same time, we are creating an invaluable archive for future generations.
The United States Holocaust Museum's Oral History Archive
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum’s Jeff and Toby Herr Oral History Archive is one of the largest and most diverse collections of Holocaust testimonies in the world. The Museum conducts its own interviews, and also actively collects testimonies produced by individuals and institutions such as libraries, archives, and local Holocaust research centers.
"How to Record Your Own Oral History" from Obama.org
"Our goal is to capture what it felt like to live through this historic election, and what it felt like to see the first African-American President of the United States inaugurated on the National Mall in Washington, DC. So sit down with a friend, a neighbor, a grandparent, or someone you know with a story for an interview. Or simply record your thoughts on your own."
"How Digital Technology Has Changed Oral History"
An article by Sarah McLennan, a PhD candidate in the History Department at the College of William & Mary and a 2012-2013 W&M Lemon Project fellow, discussing observations of the changing technologies when conducting oral history work and what kind of technology the author uses in their work now.
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