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Illinois Researchers, Native American Tribes Working Together to Curate, Increase Access to Oral Histories

19 Jun 2023 7:54 AM | Anonymous

Researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign are working with Native American tribes across the country to digitize oral histories and ethnographic materials collected from tribal members and to make them accessible online.

Illinois is one of seven universities that are part of the Doris Duke Native Oral History Revitalization Project to increase the accessibility of first-person narratives collected in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The project aims to build relationships between the universities and the Native communities documented in the collections, to return copies of the materials to the tribes and to have tribal members serve as co-curators to determine culturally appropriate access to the collections.

Bethany Anderson, the natural and applied sciences archivist for the Archives; Jenny Davis, the director of the American Indian Studies program; and Christopher Prom, the associate dean for digital strategies for the University Library are leading the project at Illinois.

The seven universities were provided Doris Duke grants in the 1960s to collect narratives and record events of tribes throughout the U.S. and in Canada, resulting in more than 6,000 oral histories.

You can read more in an article by Jodi Heckel published in the University of Illinois web site at: 

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