A University of South Carolina oral history project that matched students learning interviewing techniques with American military veterans telling their stories has been awarded the 2019 Oral History Association Elizabeth B. Mason Award. The Mason Award is a national award that recognizes oral history work of significant historic, scholarly and social value.
“The South Carolina Veterans Oral History Project” is a collection of oral histories highlighting the lives and experiences of American veterans who now call South Carolina home. The project was created by Andrea L’Hommedieu, director of the University Libraries’ Oral History Department, and 20 students in her undergraduate Honors College course. The students learned the theory, methodology and best practices of oral history, refining their knowledge as they conducted one-on-one interviews. They met and recorded conversations with veterans ranging in age from 34 to 95, covering every branch of the service and most major conflicts from World War II through Iraq and Afghanistan.
The project won the Mason Award in the small project category. Thanks to Libraries’ resources and staff, and the for-credit work done by students, L’Hommedieu was able to build what is now a nationally-recognized project on a minimal budget.
Explore the finished collection at digital.library.sc.edu/exhibits/veteransoralhistory