Holley Graded School Museum, Library Partner for Northumberland County Oral History Project

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Over the next few months, the Holley Graded School Museum and Art Gallery and Northumberland Public Library will collaborate to gather objects and oral histories of the county from the community. These will be presented at an exhibit next summer called “The Northumberland County Remember Project.”

We’re very excited to see what the community will contribute to this exhibit,” said Garfield Parker. “We’re looking for stories that will excite the next generation and objects that represent an important part of a local family’s history.”

Storytellers will be audio-recorded or video-taped. Participants may bring family members to help tell a story. Participants may also bring in an object that prompts a story. It can be anything: a great-grandfather’s fishing pole that finally snagged the “big one,” a medal of honor, a ticket from one of the former ferries, an old sign or a document.

Objects will be photographed with their owner to be displayed at the main exhibit at Holley Graded School in Lottsburg and at the public library in Heathsville. The Remember Project will feature the collection of video and audio stories as well as speakers and special programs throughout the summer, including a workshop on how to collect oral histories.

Documenting the stories and objects of our community will help to preserve history and provide meaning and understanding for us and generations to come,” said NPL director Alice Cooper. “Holley Graded has been an intrinsic part of this community since the late 19th century and generations have a connection to it, including author Louisa May Alcott.”

Oral histories of Northumberland County will be collected at Northumberland Public Library, 7204 Northumberland Hwy., Heathsville, on Saturdays, beginning November 26 through January, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Pamela D’Angelo, a public radio producer, will be recording stories and photographing objects and storytellers for this exhibit.

Most valuable are the stories passed down from generation to generation,” said D’Angelo. “But we’re also hoping people will dig deep into their attics and barns, take something collecting dust off the shelf or bring in a prized family possession passed down from the greats and tell that story.”

To call ahead for an appointment or for more information please contact the library at 580-5051 or email D’Angelo at publicitynplva@gmail.com

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