This is SPOHP

as always,
one community,
many voices.

Director's Welcome

Dear Friends of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program,

As you will read in this exciting end-of- year progress report, SPOHP has reached more students, scholars, and members of the general public than ever. We have conducted community-based oral history workshops with churches, businesses, university classes, veteran’s groups, African American history museums, Native American nations and much more. Thanks in large part to your generosity we have been able to provide logistical support for social-justice research projects throughout the Americas and we provided transformative and life-changing educational opportunities for hundreds of students.

In the summer of 2017 we embarked upon our 10th annual field work trip to the Mississippi Delta. In addition to interviewing legendary civil rights organizers, our team performed a day of service at the Emmett Till Museum in Glendora and sponsored public educational forums on bringing civil rights education to K-12 students in Mississippi and the South generally. Teaching students how to learn outside of the classroom is one of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program’s specialties. From the moment when our founder Dr. Samuel Proctor trained a cohort of graduate students to conduct oral history interviews with Native Americans in Florida, North Carolina and Alabama in the early 1970s, SPOHP’s mission has been to promote experiential learning, civic engagement, and history outside of the box—and outside of the campus. In an era of “fake news” we train interns how to conduct rigorous research. In a time of polarized debates, we show students how to listen carefully—especially to people who share diverse opinions—and we engage students in learning the age-old art of conversation. When we return from the field, we teach students the art of digital video and audio production which gives them the ability to create podcasts and documentaries on important social issues that have gained broad audiences.

Of course, none of this is possible without your support. If you like what you read in this newsletter, I hope that you will join me in helping us celebrate the 50 th year of SPOHP by making a tax-deductible donation to help sustain the work of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program. In addition, if you have a friend or family member who may be so inclined, please pass this newsletter along to them. Finally, I hope that you will visit or phone us sometime in the New Year. Our students, staff and volunteers treasure the opportunity to personally share their experiences with members of the Proctor Program Family! Thank you as always for your consideration and your support.

Sincerely Yours,

Paul Ortiz

Scholars in Residence

Dr. Fíliz Sönmez

DR. FÍLIZ SÖNMEZ completed her Ph.D. in Architectural History at Yıldız Technical University in 2012, Istanbul, Turkey. She studied at the University of Florida, USA, School of Architecture as a visiting scholar in 2010. Her areas of interests are domestic architecture, interior design, architectural oral history, and theory of modern architecture. As a visiting scholar at the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program at the University of Florida between 2016-2017 she conducted research in the Duck Pond District for a historical preservation project. Dr. Sönmez is also in the process of applying for another visiting position with us in the future.

Jeffrey Pufahl

JEFFREY PUFAHL is faculty in the UF Center for Arts and Medicine. His work is focused on creating inter-campus and community partnerships to develop theatre-based programming to address social issues and community health. Jeff’s current SPOHP projects include developing a digital walking trail in the Fifth Avenue neighborhood in collaboration with the Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency, creating a site-specific theater installation in the Harn Museum’s Jacob Lawrence exhibit (April 2018) utilizing local oral histories and community actors, as well as developing an original play based on narratives from the Women’s March on Washington.

Dr. Julian Chambliss

DR. JULIAN CHAMBLISS is SPOHP’s Julian Pleasants Award Scholar and a professor of History at Rollins College. His research focuses on race, community and identity in real and imagined comic city landscapes. He serves as coordinator of the Africa and African-American Studies Program at Rollins and Coordinator of the Media, Arts, and Culture Special Interest Section for the Florida Conference of Historians. His notable projects include Project Mosaic: Zora Neale Hurston, Advocate Recovered, and Oscar Mack. His teaching interests focus on urban development and popular culture in the US. In particular, he’s concerned with how perceptions of urban space shape individual and communal interactions.

Project Updates

Florida Queer History Project

2017 was a transformative year for the Florida Queer History Project, with essential collaborations with the Center for Gender, Sexualities, and Women’s Studies Research making fieldwork in Washington, D.C. possible in order to shed light on the present LGBTQ+ Movement in the nation’s capital. The project’s coordinators, Robert Baez and Holland Hall, conducted fieldwork in Washington, D.C. at the Women’s March on Washington and presidential inauguration. This trip inspired the two to embark on another fieldwork trip to document Pride weekend in Washington, D.C. in June 2017. Additional funding will help provide UF students and staff with the opportunity to continue documenting the contemporary LGBTQ+ Movement through an intersectional lens and with communities across the nation.

Mississippi Freedom Fieldwork Trip

The Mississippi Freedom Project is an annual trip taken to the Mississippi Delta by scholars, students and activists looking to unearth the Civil Rights Movement history in Mississippi from the perspective of the forgotten working class. This past year we interviewed scholars, state senator Willie Simmons, gave community presentations on decolonized educational models and aided in community redevelopment efforts via road and gravesite cleanups. As we travel back this year, we are looking to continue strengthening existing community partnerships in the Mississippi Delta as well expand our capability to contribute to the development of these communities long term.

Newene Nap

SPOHP conducted its second workshop with the Duckwater Shoshone Tribe in March 2017, helping the tribe get its own oral history program started. Associate Program Director Ryan Morini also received a Liljeblad Fund grant from the University of Nevada, Reno to conduct more interviews with Western Shoshones in Duckwater and other locations, and travel to the National Archives to better understand the broader context of these narratives. He hopes to organize an oral history podcasting workshop with Shoshone youth in Duckwater, and to archive many more elders' voices to help create a book on Shoshone history rooted in the people's voices.

African American History Project

This year, AAHP has added over 80 interviews and counting; in total, we've gathered well over 600 Black history interviews since 2009. Those of the past year included UF Black alumni; descendants of the Groveland Four; the family of the late Mr. Oscar Mack in Akron, Ohio; and prominent, historic Black businesses and churches in the 5th Avenue neighborhood of Gainesville. Moreover, our staff and interns have been hard at work preparing the first 500 transcripts to be posted online and made publicly accessible by the end of 2018. This year we also conducted public workshops in both St. Augustine and Macclenny in Florida, and Africatown in Alabama. In the coming year, we expect to create a proper web portal for the 500 transcripts, to begin planning a 12-part audio documentary podcast series on the Black Freedom Struggle in Florida, and to conduct further interviews in Gainesville, Ocala, Tallahassee, Quincy, White Springs, Apopka, and St. Augustine, among other locations.

Virginia History Project

This October, SPOHP sent a team of ten students to Virginia for our Fourth Annual Fieldwork in Folklore Trip! This six day trip to the Tidewater region was a collaboration with local organizations such as the Foundation for Historic Christ Church, the Mathews County Historical Society, and Historic Rice's Hotel/Hughlett's Tavern to conduct interviews regarding local history, general stores, historic sites and preservation, the fishing industry, and more. The students interviewed over twenty-five people, adding to our project collection of almost two hundred interviews! The students were also able to have a tour of Colonial Williamsburg, Historic Christ Church, and Menokin Plantation House as well as attend a seafood festival. This trip provides experiential opportunities for students to get involved in history as a field of research as well as to make connections between colonial and contemporary history. This trip requires a lot of community support to coordinate, and any funding will go directly to accommodating for as many students as possible.

Poarch Creek Project

This year marked the third year of working with the Poarch Band of Creek Indians to process archival audio materials in an effort to document their tribal history. This project, originating from an oral history project conducted in the 1970s by Dr. Anthony Paredes, focuses on the audiocassette recordings of Judge Hugh Rozelle, an attorney involved in the tribe's federal recognition efforts. Students participate in conducting archival research, transcribing audio materials, and preservation. Also, this summer, SPOHP sent a team of staff and students to Alabama to conduct oral histories of tribal elders in the community. These interviews, including one with Eddie Tullis, former tribal leader for thirty years, focused on the federal recognition process and how much has changed in their lifetimes. SPOHP hopes to continue both its archival and oral history collaboration with Poarch Creek, and so we look forward to any funding to support our future fieldwork trips to Alabama.

Veterans History Project

The Veterans History Project’s extensive WWII and Vietnam-era collections have continued to strengthen SPOHP’s ongoing collaboration with Gainesville’s Matheson Museum, and the Library of Congress. VHP coordinator, Ann Smith gave several Oral History presentations this year in Alachua county and elsewhere, sharing tips and best practices on interview techniques and transcription. The Veteran History Project operates primarily with community volunteers but could benefit from funds allowing travel to surrounding areas of Florida.

Ottoman Greeks of the United States Project

This past May, the Ottoman Greeks of the United States Project (OGUS) organized research trips to Ohio, Michigan, and California. Researchers recorded sixty interviews with descendants of immigrants from the Ottoman Empire and captured two-dimensional and three-dimensional images. The project produced its first podcast titled, The Acropolis and the Madonna, and also published an opinion piece in the Gainesville Sun about the current Syrian refugee crisis. In 2018, OGUS will conduct interviews in New York, Ohio, Oregon, Washington D.C., and Washington. OGUS will also produce a new podcast about the refugee exodus from the Ottoman Empire in the early 20th century, and an essay about their identity.

Fab Collabs

"Voices From the March"

Visiting scholar Jeffrey Pufahl has been working diligently with SPOHP staff and interns to create the play Voices from the March. This play explores the firsthand experiences of SPOHP and UF's Center for Gender and Sexualities and Womens Studies Research researchers who documented the experiences of attendees at the Women’s March on Washington in January. A staged reading of an excerpt from Voices from the March was performed in November 2017 at the Harn Museum of Art as part of Harn Museum Night's, "Wonder Women," exhibit. The play features the interviews conducted at the March and will come to life as a multi-media production in Jan. 2018 at UF’s Social Justice Summit on Friday, January 26 at the J. Wayne Reitz Student Union in the Rion Ballroom. The 2018 Summit theme is “Allyship: Identify, Interact, & Impact.”

UF College of Medicine

A collaboration began this past August between SPOHP and the Geriatrics Clerkship of UF's College of Medicine. Partnering with Nina Stoyan-Rosenzweig, Health Science Center Libraries archivist and longtime friend of our program and Dr. Mallory Otto, clinical assistant professor at the college and clerkship director, SPOHP was asked to help develop an oral history component of the four-week geriatrics rotation required for all 4th year medical students. Two aims of the clerkship are working as a member of an interdisciplinary team and developing listening skills, longtime strengths of SPOHP. So far, SPOHP has trained 37 medical students on the practice of oral history, who in turn have interviewed 19 residents of Oak Hammock. Interviews are added to the new Elders of Florida collection, and students present on their experience. Students, interviewees, and instructors have all remarked on the benefits of this collaboration, which will continue in the Spring semester, for enhancing the humanistic values of medicine.

Voices of Dreamers

This semester the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program was able to create the Voices of Dreamers (VOD) project which aims to preserve the stories of undocumented students at the University of Florida. Some of these stories will be utilize in Undocupeers, an immigration training that will be institutionalize for staff in Student Affairs. Throughout the year the VOD team was able to obtain 24 interviews and attend the The Together We Dream March, which was held as a protest to the rescindment of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The VOD team was also able to travel to Orlando, Florida to preserve the stories of undocumented students at the University of Central Florida. In the future, we hope to expand this collection to other schools and collaborate with Madres Sin Fronteras, an organization that is predominately made up of undocumented mothers fighting for human rights. We hope to create a panel or podcast to showcase our findings and highlight major themes found within these interviews. Lastly, the VOD team applied to be part of the 2018 Southwest Oral History Association 2018 Conference this upcoming March in order to share our project and learn about other Oral History projects around the nation.

Remembering Laura Dixie

Known as “the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement,” in Tallahassee, Florida, Laura Dixie was one of the most important organizers in the rise of the modern civil rights movement in the Deep South in the 1950s. She was a lead organizer in the historic Tallahassee Bus Boycott in 1956; played a pivotal role in the FAMU sit-in movement in the 1960s; was responsible for a massive voter registration campaign in the Panhandle in the 1970s; marched against the Ku Klux Klan in Forsyth, Georgia in the 1980s; was a founding president of her hospital workers union--and even all of these listed activities barely scratches the surface of the importance of her life. For the Proctor Program, Mrs. Dixie has hosted us for barbecues, fish-fries and stop-overs during our annual Mississippi Freedom Project field trips--as well as other events for a decade. SPOHP will continue to honor the memory of this amazing person who has done so much for the nation as well as SPOHP.

Surprise us this holiday with a one-time or recurring gift!

Become a Donor Today!

Donor Tiers

SPOHPer..........................................................Up to $100

Support the mission of the program with a gift to help us restock general SPOHP office and field supplies.

C.L.A.S. Act......................................................$101-$300

Be a CLAS Act to help us maintain current production equipment, and help us preserve our physical and digital storage for our 7500+ oral history collection.

Record Producer...............................................$301-$600

Help us fund fieldwork trips that put our students in direct contact with history-makers across the country.

Collection Curator..........................................$601-$1000

Make it possible for SPOHP to purchase state-of-the-art digital production equipment that will allow us to produce documentaries and showcase our vast collection to international audiences.

Oral History Archivist.................................$1001 or more

Help us build our endowment, expand SPOHP’s educational outreach mission, and guarantee another 50 years of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program.

Happy Holidays from the SPOHP team!

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