at Berkshire Community College
Helping people around the region tell their stories
and listen to the stories of others
The Housatonic Heritage Oral History Center at Berkshire Community College is a project of the Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area (Housatonic Heritage) and serves Western Massachusetts and Northwest Connecticut. The Center was established on the campus of Berkshire Community College and maintains a very strong partnership with BCC, working closely with staff, students, and faculty.
The Center was established to help people plan and implement sustainable oral history projects and properly care for their new and existing collections. The Center assists with various stages of a project, from pre-project planning, to interviewing, and then archiving, often connecting small organizations or people with professionals who can help them. The Center creates a clearinghouse of information and resources, an alliance of professionals and volunteers who share information in the effort to improve oral history practice and bring oral history into new settings and to new audiences.
We welcome your inquires and look forward to talking with you about your oral history project.
Photos appearing above: 1) An oral history interview with David Wasielewski, BCC student interviewer, and David Resnik, World War II veteran; Wendy Germain on camera; and Paul O’Brien, advising us on Library of Congress protocols for their Veterans Project. In the CTSB-Lee, MA. studio. 2) An artist on the BCC campus (from the BCC Library archives). 3) Dennis Powell, President of the Berkshire Chapter of the NAACP, after an oral history interview held in the Berkshire Eagle Podcast Studio. 4) Thomas O’Connell, Founding BCC President. 5) Tattiya Maruco, BCC faculty member, and Alisa Del Tufo, founding director of the Threshold Collaborative, chatting after a Oral History and Social Justice workshop given by Del Tufo; 5) Magdalene Adams, former NAACP Berkshire Chapter president, after an oral history interview at BCC. In the background is Len Kates, who was the NAACP organizer on the project.
We help people carry out their projects, often by connecting them with others who are doing similar work. THE Oral History Alliance
The Housatonic Heritage Oral History Alliance, launched at the May, 2017, Oral History Symposium at BCC, is made up of local people engaged in various types of oral history projects. People doing oral history have ideas, skills and experience to share, and our goal is to help them to meet each other to get inspiration and support to carry out their work.
We host workshops on various oral history related topics. Please sign up on this site to receive updates about our workshops and events.
Please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, to learn more about the Center and the Alliance.
(Above, Paul O’Brien, former director of Technology at Mt. Everett High School in Sheffield, MA, and coordinator of veteran oral history projects with middle and high school students, gave a hands-on workshop on the technical tools of oral history. Here we see him and workshop participants at BCC’s South County Center.)
Left/Above, Magdalene Adams, former NAACP president, after we met for an interview at BCC. Len Kates, who worked with us and the NAACP to make this project happen, is in the background…)