OHMAR (Oral History in the Mid-Atlantic Region) is holding its annual spring conference this year in Washington, DC, at the Charles Sumner School Museum and Archives, on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 & Thursday, April 29, 2010. The Preview Schedule of Events has been posted to the OHMAR website: http://www.ohmar.org/confercurrent.html
Wednesday's offerings include workshop sessions with distinguished oral historians Brien Williams and Susan Kraft (see below for more details), a tour of the National Geographic Society Museum and Archives (adjacent to the Sumner School) and a reception at the nearby Beacon Bar & Grill on Wednesday evening.
Thursday's program will include morning and afternoon panel and paper presentations. Anne G. Ritchie, the oral historian for the National Gallery of Art, will be awarded the 2010 Forrest Pogue Award, OHMAR's highest honor, in recognition of her illustrious career in the field, at this year's luncheon.
If you are involved in oral history, or are contemplating it, there could hardly be a better opportunity than these two days to meet oral historians and learn about the craft. For more information, go to the following web address:
PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. NO REGISTRATION AT THE DOOR.
Space for Wednesday's workshops and tour are limited to 20 persons for each event; first come, first served.
Registration fees are due by April 21, 2010, and are non-refundable.
Anne G. Ritchie 2010 Forrest Pogue Award Recipient
Since 1990, Anne G. Ritchie has been the senior archivist and oral historian at the National Gallery of Art. She has been active in regional, national and international oral history organizations, having served as president of OHMAR and the Oral History Association and vice president of the International Oral History Association.
Ritchie received her Master of Arts degrees in History and Library & Information Science from the University of Kentucky. While working at the University of Kentucky Libraries from 1977 to 1988, she directed oral history projects on a variety of topics including the Frontier Nursing Service, John Jacob Niles, and the Christian Appalachian Project. After moving to the Washington area in 1988, she conducted interviews for a community oral history project in Charles County, Maryland. Between 1990 and 1995, she was also a project interviewer for the Washington Press Club Foundation Women in Journalism Oral History Project.
Morning Workshop Session 9:30 AM to 12:30 PM
"A Picture and a Thousand Words: Adding Video to an Oral History Program"
Brien Williams will lead a half-day workshop designed to discuss and demonstrate the technical, aesthetic, and social aspects of incorporating video in oral history projects. The workshop is designed primarily for those already experienced in doing oral history who are adding video to their repertoire or considering doing so. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own cameras and equipment for evaluation and practice, if they wish.
Brien Williams is an oral historian and video producer. He is currently conducting interviews for the George Mitchell Oral History Project at Bowdoin College, Maine, and directed a similar project for the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics at the University of Kansas with members of Congress and senate staff. He has also interviewed members of Congress for the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress. Formerly Dr. Williams was historian of the American Red Cross responsible for the study and dissemination of Red Cross history and for a national Red Cross Oral History Program. Dr. Williams has been an independent video producer, writer, and director. Clients have included government agencies, private corporations, and members of the Washington political and legal communities. He served as contract video producer for the Smithsonian Videohistory Project and the Lemelson Center for the Study of Invention and Innovation on videotaped studies of leading scientists and inventors. He received his Ph.D. in Radio-Television-Film from Northwestern University and taught media production and theory at Indiana and George Washington universities. He was the 2009 recipient of OHMAR's Forrest Pogue award.
This workshop is limited to 20 attendees.
Afternoon Workshop Session 1:30 PM to 4:30 PM
"Oral History 101: So How Do You Catch Lightning in a Bottle?"
The Urban Dictionary describes this wonderful expression as follows: "Capturing something powerful and elusive and then being able to hold it and show it to the world."
This is the work of oral historians. We have a unique, not-to-be-squandered opportunity to help our subjects look beneath the tangible surface and capture the true richness of their stories.
Drawing on the topic of this conference, and her own 15 years as an oral historian documenting dance (certainly one of the most elusive subjects around), Susan Kraft will explore with workshop participants our intentions as oral historians and how we might most effectively achieve them. This three-hour workshop will focus mainly on interview techniques and project design. It is suitable for oral historians new to the field as well as those seeking to hone their skills.
Since 1993, Susan Kraft has served as the Coordinator of the Dance Oral History Project and Archive of the Jerome Robbins Dance Division of The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, Dorothy & Lewis B. Cullman Center. Under her guidance, the Dance Oral History Project and Archive has developed into the most significant dance oral history collection in the world. Ms. Kraft is also known for her work as a dance columnist and as a freelance writer and researcher. She holds a Master's Degree from New York University and a Bachelor's Degree from Oberlin College.
This workshop is limited to 20 attendees.
For Registration Information:
OHMAR, c/o Constance Beninghove
317 12th Street, NE #5
Washington, DC 20002
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