This month marks the end of our work with the residents of West Dallas for the Dallas Neighborhood Stories Project. We embarked on this project with the understanding that the current narrative of Dallas and the archives available sorely lack information about the robust history of West Dallas and how it has grown and changed since it was annexed into the City of Dallas in 1954. Our goal with this project, and in partnering with the Dallas Public Library, was to ensure that history can be accessible to a larger audience and preserved for future generations.
Over the past few months, we have had the pleasure of working with community members from all over West Dallas to record their personal histories of the area. We began with one full day of archiving at the Dallas West Branch Library back in April, which led to multiple follow-up events and one and one meetings with community members. We learned early on that this project was just a piece of a process that will take years, even generations of West Dallasites to truly give justice to the neighborhood’s history.
The items we have scanned included everything from birth and marriage certificates to an old photo of the Continental Bridge. Along with scanning, we filmed oral interviews about life in West Dallas, in one instance going as far back as the 1930s. As we prepare to celebrate all that we have archived in the past few months about West Dallas we encourage anyone interested in furthering this work to visit the Dallas Public Library’s 7th floor or email firstname.lastname@example.org to continue archiving and scanning!
West Dallas Community History Exhibit, Sept 19th 5:00 pm -7:00 pm - Join us for the opening of the West Dallas Community History Exhibit on September 19th at 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm at the Dallas West Branch Library. The exhibit will be up for the public at the Library through the end of November.
Red Bird Community History Harvest, Sept 8th 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm - Our first archival event for the Red Bird Neighborhood will be held on September 8th, 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm at the Polk-Wisdom Branch Library. [bc] encourages any individuals and organizations who are interested in participating in this effort to reach out to Hafsa Ambreen or call 214-252-2900.
This project has been made possible in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities: Exploring the human endeavor. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.