With more than 45 interviews conducted to date, Utah State University’s Latino Voices Project is well over its goal to collect 40 interviews from Cache Valley Latino citizens. And with recent funding from the Marriner S. Eccles Foundation and the Utah State Historical Records Advisory Board (USHRAB), the project will now move into the next phases – transcription, translation and digitization of the oral interviews.
The Latino Voices Project is part of Northern Utah Speaks, an umbrella collection of oral histories with the aim to capture the voices from all northern Utah communities. The collection is coordinated by and housed in Special Collections and Archives at USU’s Merrill-Cazier Library.
Funding from the Marriner S. Eccles Foundation has proven critical to fulfilling the goals of the Latino Voices Project, said Randy Williams, project director and folklore curator for Special Collections and Archives. The foundation’s financial contributions will enabled the library to have the oral histories transcribed and have portions of the collection translated into English.
The recent USHRAB donation also funds the transcription of the oral interviews which will be digitized and stored in Special Collections and Archives and in the online Digital Library at the Merrill-Cazier Library. In addition to benefiting the Latino Voices Project, another award from USHRAB to Utah State University’s Special Collections & Archives for the purchase of audio digitization tools will allow improved preservation of thousands of audio recordings dating from the 1930s to the present within the Northern Utah Speaks oral history collection. These include oral histories and field recordings related to northern Utah, the Intermountain West and the history of Utah State University. The funding from USHRAB will establish a digital transfer station for converting these valuable audio records to digital format to preserve the recordings and facilitate public access, Williams said.
“We are extremely grateful to the Marriner S. Eccles Foundation, USHRAB and all of our donors for their financial support, but more importantly, for seeing the value of the Latino Voices Project,” Williams said. “Oral histories represent a critical component of a region’s history, and it has been exciting to capture the stories of our Latino community members in our Northern Utah Speaks oral history collection. This project absolutely would not be moving along so quickly and successfully without the contributions of these great organizations.”
This project has also received funding from the Utah Humanities Council, Utah State Division of History and the Mountain West Center for Regional Studies.
For information on Latino Voices Project, contact Williams at (435) 797-3493.
Contact: Randy Williams (435) 797-3493
Source: Merrill-Cazier Library