The Wiregrass Common Heritage Project

In January 2016, the National Endowment for the Humanities funded the Wiregrass Common Heritage Project (WCHP), a joint venture of the Wiregrass Archives and the Troy University Dothan Campus History Department.

The WCHP hosted two workshops, two community scanning days, and a follow up meeting.

The first workshop, held on May 21 at the Dothan Public Library downtown

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Frazine Taylor
branch, was Frazine Taylor’s “African American Genealogical Research in Alabama.” Taylor spent her career as a 1603060448reference archivist at the Alabama Department of Archives and History and is the chair of Alabama’s Black Heritage Council.  Additionally, she authored Researching African American Genealogy in Alabama: A Resource Guide (NewSouth Books, 2008).

The second workshop took place on June 4 at Landmark Park in Dothan.  Dana Chandler, director of the Tuskegee University Archives, presented “Preserving Your Family Treasures.  He

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Dana Chandler
explained the physical and environmental threats to papers, photographs, and artifacts, then worked with attendees to properly preserve and record identification information about photographs they provided.

Two Community Scanning Days followed on June 11 and June 25, when community members chose 12 images from their collections to be digitized and added to the collections of the Wiregrass Archives. Participants received a thumbdrive with copies of their scans and archival quality enclosures for their original photographs and documents.  Six donors provided over 130 images, and one donor provided a highschool yearbook and over 200 African American funeral programs.

Scanning Days Scenes:

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Scanning Teams, June 11, 2016, Dothan Library

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Scanning Team Working with Donor, June 25, 2016, Landmark Park

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Scanning Team working with Donors, June 25, 2016, Landmark Park
Finally, on the stormy night of December 5, Project Directors Dr. Marty Olliff and Dr. Robert Saunders met with donors and community members at the Dothan Public Library to summarize the project, point toward future project directions, and share a video made from a number of contributed slides, shown here:

WCHP from Robert Saunders on Vimeo.

Thanks to our funders and partners.

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