Bryant Library Oral History Collection Digitization Project

Material Description

The materials to be reformatted include 49 magnetic audio cassette tapes containing oral histories recorded between 1965 and 1976. The bulk were recorded between 1971 and 1974. With several exceptions, all tapes were recorded at the Bryant Library in Roslyn, New York by Bryant Library reference staff. The cassette tapes are currently stored in plastic cassette cases within archival boxes. Tapes are arranged alphabetically by surname of interviewee. The inventory, created for submission to NEDCC and available to Local History Collection and Reference Department staff, is currently the only descriptive tool for the material. Although the library is in possession of a cassette player, the cassette tapes, and the content contained on them, are inaccessible to the public due to their age and fragile physical condition.


This project will result in the digitization of 49 cassette tapes containing oral history interviews of Roslyn, New York residents recorded between 1965 and 1978. Containing the unique recollections of then-elderly residents, many whose families had lived and worked in Roslyn for generations, and members of Roslyn's small but longstanding African American community, the tapes include the words of “everyday men and women who can tell us about the way it used to be around here.” The words of historic preservationist Roger Gerry, whose efforts are visible in Roslyn’s historic district, and those of neighbors and friends of noted twentieth century author Christopher Morley, are also included. Digitization will allow these voices to be heard to the first time in over forty years. Comprehensive subject indexing and the creation of detailed descriptive metadata will make the content of these interviews discoverable and accessible to scholars, educators, and the general public.


Recordings at Risk

Amount Awarded


Year Added



The Bryant Library


  • Ms. Carol Clarke (The Bryant Library)


68 recorded hours