From the Digital Collections Blog...
This blog has been a bit quiet while I was away for the past month. With August we begin our third year of preserving the history of Jews who migrated to Southern Nevada. I came back to a desk piled high with mail, transcripts and other materials. All that is now filed away and I am excited to focus on collecting additional oral histories these coming months.
Here are a few random but important items I’d like to mention:
As the project evolves fun discoveries come to light. Recently we added a 1977 oral history of Mike and Sallie Gordon. As a young couple the Gordons arrived in the dusty desert in January 1932. Soon they were active members in a new and blossoming Jewish community and thriving members of a growing city that would become Las Vegas. Explore the site and read the words of other founders of Las Vegas. A great story awaits you.
Today marks Holocaust Remembrance Day (Yom HoShoah). On the Special Collections blog you can read a thoughtful essay by Nancy Hardy about Yom HaShoah and a few of the Holocaust stories found in the archives of UNLV University Libraries’ Special Collections. Click here to read: https://www.library.unlv.edu/whats_new_in_special_collection
Did you know that ten years ago President George W. Bush proclaimed that May 2006 to be the first Jewish American Heritage Month? The Library of Congress hosts a web site where you can explore the national perspective of those of Jewish ancestry in the United States’ history. http://www.
In January and February, two small groups of adults who grew up Jewish in Las Vegas gathered to discuss their memories of what it was like to be young and Jewish here. As with other projects of the Oral History Research Center, it is fun and insightful to hear the reminiscences of the group participants. They often spark a recollection from what another shares.
The UNLV University Libraries has been awarded a $99,716 grant to partner with Vegas PBS to produce a documentary, African Americans: The Las Vegas Experience, with accompanying curricular materials. The grant is administered by the Nevada State Library and Archives under the Library Services and Technology Act through the Institute of Museum and Library Services, an independent federal agency.
The voices and recollections of Las Vegas residents who have experienced local history bring Las Vegas history to life. We call them oral histories. They are not memoirs, but a conversational look at experiences and observations. For me, it is a great honor to listen to the recollections of longtime local residents: what brought them to live here, where their ancestral roots were, and living in Las Vegas for a number of years has been like, and how it has changed over the years.