The focus of An Oral History Project: The African-American Community in Woodbury is to develop an oral history and archive of the black community in Woodbury. We are creating a record for scholars and the general public that will describe life in Woodbury for African Americans through the 19th and 20th centuries. Sponsored by Woodbury’s Neighborhood Preservation Program, we are reconstructing the early history of blacks in Woodbury through the use of oral narratives, photographs and documents of the elderly participants who were born and raised in Woodbury.
Project Director Dr. Diane D. Turner, a Woodbury resident and the curator of the Charles L. Blockson Collection at Temple University, frequently advises the participants that “African American history is American history, but it is frequently lost, stolen or strayed” and that only through projects such as this can the African American community ensure that their story is accurately told and preserved. Dr. Turner frequently uses an old African proverb to illustrate the importance of passing this history on to the younger generations:
“If you don’t know where you come from,You cannot know where you are going.
And if you don’t know where you are going, Any road will take you there”. Anyone interested in participating, please call Gloria Holmes, Project Advisor, at 856.845.1630.
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