Friday, March 04, 2005

Organization capturing Miss. history first hand

Link - The William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation at the University of Mississippi is one of many turning to oral history — individuals telling of their life experiences — as a way to get to the heart and soul of events, adding a richness, texture and personal relevance that straight factual accounts often lack.

The Mississippi Oral History Project — launched in 1999, and funded by the state Legislature and the Mississippi Humanities Council — used a systematic approach to fill in gaps in the existing oral history collections about the history and culture of the state.

Projects under way now include a Library of Congress-sponsored effort in local communities to gather veterans' oral histories. Thus far, the Corinth Museum has gathered more than 20 oral histories, mostly of World War II veterans.

The Northeast Mississippi Historical Society in Tupelo is participating in the program and seeking veterans who will tell their stories.The American Legion Post in New Albany has been collecting veterans' stories and already has a library of more than 200, said Union County Heritage Museum director Jill Smith.

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