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Grant number like: PY-253074-17

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Hampton University (Hampton, VA 23668-0001)
Maureen Elgersman Lee (Project Director: May 2016 to July 2018)
African-American Material Culture in Williamsburg, Virginia

Two digitization days to collect a wide variety of historical, primary documents held by African Americans living in Williamsburg and adjacent James City and York counties in Virginia.  Faculty at Hampton University, with support from the Williamsburg Regional Library, would hold two community information sessions prior to the digitization days to convey their interest in collecting personal papers, to include letters, diaries, diplomas, and ephemera.  A survey of local collections of African American materials reveals that fewer papers have been preserved than historic objects and photographs.  This project aims to correct that imbalance and strengthen the historical record of African American life in the region.  The documents and metadata would be uploaded to a dedicated project website, which would go online in conjunction with a final public program to discuss the community’s contributions.

Hampton University, with support from Williamsburg Regional Library, proposes a 2017 project to digitize African-American material culture in Williamsburg, Virginia. The pilot project, which will run from January to December 2017, will focus on digitizing a wide variety of papers (including letters, diaries, advertisements, diplomas, baptismal certificates, etc.). The project's phases comprise 1) two community information/orientation meetings in February, 2) two public digitization events in May, 3) six months (June to November) of studying, organizing, creating metadata,and 4) a public celebration in December where project results and significance will be shared. Additional funding will be sought to support web hosting costs.

Project fields:
African American History; African American Studies

Common Heritage

Preservation and Access

$11,975 (approved)
$11,975 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 12/31/2017