Preservation and Access: Common Heritage

Period of Performance

1/1/2017 - 6/30/2019

Funding Totals

$12,000.00 (approved)
$8,341.23 (awarded)

Preserving the History of Lincoln University Village

FAIN: PY-253084-17

Lincoln University, Pennsylvania (Lincoln University, PA 19352-9141)
Sophia Sotilleo (Project Director: May 2016 to March 2021)

A digitization day to help chronicle the history of Lincoln University, the first university for African Americans, and of Hinsonville, Pennsylvania, the town founded by free Blacks where it resides.  Many of the university’s alumni were involved in important historical moments, such as the Civil War and the Philadelphia trolley boycott.  Lincoln University would work with the Chester County Historical Society to hold the “Heritage Day.”  All digitized content would be made available to the public through the University’s website.  Public events would include walking tours of the campus, lectures by notable historians such as Henry Louis Gates, a community-wide reading campaign, and a culminating exhibit to showcase the digitized content.

This proposal addresses the critical need to document the personal, professional, and civic experiences of the people whose lives contributed to the founding of Lincoln University, PA. Descendants of residents of Hinsonville, an early settlement of free African American landowners and farmers, now Lincoln University, will be invited to bring family memorabilia—including photos, funeral programs, articles, Bibles and other family documents—to be digitized and catalogued. This "Heritage Day" will be open to the public and held in the Langston Hughes Memorial Library. It will provide participants with free digitized copies of family memorabilia and of oral interviews conducted by program consultants and students trained in oral history interview procedures. Heritage Day will be integrated with a series of genealogy and oral interview workshops, a Heritage Speakers Series, Heritage Walking tours of Lincoln University's campus and surrounding areas, and a community wide reading campaign.