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Grant number like: PY-253019-17

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Citadel, The (Charleston, SC 29409-0001)
Kerry Taylor (Project Director: May 2016 to October 2019)
Marina Lopez (Co Project Director: January 2017 to October 2019)

Common Heritage
Preservation and Access

$11,990 (approved)
$11,990 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 6/30/2018

Aqui Estamos - Documenting the Latino Heritage of the South Carolina Low Country

Two days of digitizing community contributions, including personal and official correspondence, photographs, diaries, recipe books, beloved objects, scrapbooks, and other materials to illuminate the life and history of the Latino communities of the South Carolina Low Country. The Citadel would partner with several local organizations for this project: the Special Collections department at the College of Charleston’s Addlestone Library (a local affiliate of the South Carolina Digital Library and the Digital Public Library of America), the Charleston County Public Library, El Círculo Hispanoamericano de Charleston, the Hispanic Business Association, and radio El Sol AM 980. The project would recruit bilingual volunteers from the Citadel, the College of Charleston, and Charleston Southern University to help staff the events and translate for the creation of metadata to describe the items brought in for digitization. This project would build on an existing oral history program at the Citadel focused on the Latino community. Of particular interest to the project organizers is the history of the development of Latino-led institutions, such as businesses, civic groups, and churches in the area. During Hispanic American Heritage month of 2017 (Sept. 15 to Oct. 15), the project directors would return to Charleston public libraries to hold community forums to present some of the items brought in during the digitization days.

The Citadel Oral History Program is offering a series of public programs and digitization events for the Latino community. Harvest days will take place in the spring of 2017 at Charleston County libraries (Johns Island and North Charleston). The materials collected will be processed and evaluated during the summer and deposited with the College of Charleston's Special Collections. During Hispanic Heritage month of 2017, we will return to the libraries to hold community forums to present the results of the project. Citadel professors Aguirre and Taylor will draw from the materials that we gathered to facilitate discussions on immigration, identity, exclusion and belonging, community building and civil rights. The forums will attract students, workers, scholars, and activists. The materials will be shared with the public through the Low Country Digital Library. We will continue to promote "Aqui Estamos" and encourage teachers to use the collection in the classroom.