Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Richmond's Carver Neighborhood - Oral Histories and More

The Carver-VCU Partnership Oral History Collection is part of the VCU Libraries Digital Collections.

The collection, available at http://go.vcu.edu/carver, consists of 15 oral histories conducted in 1999 and 2000 as part of a project funded by a grant from the Virginia Foundation for the Humanities and Public Policy. The project, described as a “Living Newspaper,” produced a play entitled “Sheep Hill Memories – Carver Dreams.” Those interviewed are longtime residents, including Barbara Abernathy, former president of the Carver Area Civic Improvement League, and Dr. Roy A. West, former mayor of Richmond. Also interviewed are newcomers to the community and those who have moved away from the neighborhood. The documentary play, which used information collected from the oral histories and other sources, focused on the history and survival of the Carver neighborhood.

The interviews, presented as MP3 files with complete PDF transcriptions, are part of the ongoing Carver-VCU Partnership that began in 1996. The Partnership's stated goal is to “create a shared urban community with a commitment to improving the neighborhood’s quality of life.” Carver is situated in Richmond, Virginia, just north of VCU’s Monroe Park campus, and is primarily a working class African American neighborhood, home to some 1,500 residents. The oral histories are permanently housed in Special Collections and Archives at the James Branch Cabell Library, VCU Libraries (along with other materials on Carver).

Visit all of the VCU Libraries Digital Collections
at http://dig.library.vcu.edu/.

Download the 30-page history of the Carver community:
“A History of the Carver and Newtowne Neighborhood,” by Kathryn E. Colwell. [PDF

- Ray B.

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