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Listen to Everyone takes an underutilized resource—oral history collections—and gives them new life in innovative yet easy-to-use programming. Community organizations can use the resources on our website to host conversations with members of their communities that explore topics which affect everyone, such as women’s rights, the environment, and education. The idea is simple–great conversations start with good listening. Our programs focus on listening to individuals’ voices and then sharing our ideas and experiences with one another. We offer two types of programs: community dialogues and adult home conversations.

This website is a project of CGP Community Stories and the Cooperstown Graduate Program (SUNY Oneonta). CGP Community Stories collects, preserves, and disseminates the diverse oral histories of the residents of Central New York State. We are committed to creating public programs that use oral histories to connect past and present and facilitate dialogue on critical social and environmental issues.

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Project History

Beginning in the 1960s, students in the Cooperstown Graduate Program began collecting oral histories from residents in the central New York region. We currently have over 1,800 recordings, some of which can be found on the CGP Community Stories website. CGP Community Stories has hosted successful community dialogue programs in Cooperstown and the surrounding area that use clips from oral histories to engage the public in important conversations. With support from Humanities NY, we have also created conversation-based programs for residents in adult homes. These programs utilize audio clips from recorded oral history interviews to initiate conversations among residents, staff, and family members about topics that have broad social significance.

In 2017, the Listen to Everyone website launched with the goal of providing museums, libraries, historical societies, community groups, schools, adult homes, science and nature centers, and other cultural institutions with a new way of connecting with their communities. The website includes all the tools a community organization needs to organize a dialogue program that uses stories from oral histories to stimulate conversation about important issues.

If you have questions about Listen to Everyone or CGP Community Stories contact:

William S. Walker, Associate Professor of History, Cooperstown Graduate Program, State University of New York-College at Oneonta, (607) 547-2586