Oral History Project
The Ohio State University Newark Earthworks Center is dedicated to teaching, research, and outreach to promote learning about Native American history and culture. Its first outreach and research project was "Discovering the Stories of Native Ohio, an oral history project".
From 2004 to 2009, this project connected our teaching with community outreach and research. Linked to seven courses, this endeavor trained students in both interview methods and American Indian history and culture. Students, staff, volunteers, and faculty interviewed 115 people at Ohio State, in their homes or workplaces, at three powwows sponsored by the Native American Indian Center of Central Ohio, and at the American Indian Education Center of Cleveland. We also collaborated with other Native American organizations. This provided an opportunity for students to meet and talk with Native people and to build an archive about the personal experiences and stories of contemporary American Indians.
The recorded interviews are stored in the Ohio State Newark library's Ohio Native Heritage Archive and are available for use by the public by appointment.
Our goals have been to improve learning and instruction about Native people at OSU and in grades K-12, to illuminate the fascinating and complex histories of Ohio's Native peoples, and to serve communities both by giving voice to Native people with ties to Ohio and by taking steps toward improving knowledge about American Indians both in the schools and among the general public.
We are extremely grateful for the support of:
The Ohio State University Newark
The Ohio State University Office of Outreach and Engagement
Former Ohio State President Karen Holbrook's office