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Have you ever wanted to get started with looking through the archives, but been intimidated by the sheer amount of options through SOHP? Lucky for you, this semester we are starting a staff picks blog! Staff picks will feature different oral histories and books that the staff at the Center for the Study of the American South recommends.

Our first staff member is Melissa Dollman. Melissa Dollman is a 2nd year PhD student in American Studies with interests in audiovisual materials, digital humanities, and women’s histories. For her picks, she went with a theme – librarians and archivists. Why librarians and archivists? Librarians and archivists are an integral part of research, yet their significance tends to be undermined. Dollman hopes that promoting these interviews will help people recognize the work of archivists and librarians as well as their lives and existence outside these roles.

The Oral Histories:

Linda Simmons-Henry

Ms. Simmons-Henry is an archivist at St. Augustine’s College in Raleigh, NC, though she grew up on her family farm land outside New Bern, NC. She discusses her love of documents, her family history in New Bern, and her genealogy.

Laura Clark Brown*

Ms. Brown is the senior librarian and Coordinator of the Digital Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in North Carolina. She discusses her upbringing in New Orleans, growing up in a more integrated environment; college at UT and culture shock; race, gender/sexuality, and reproductive rights during that time; and the death penalty, amongst other topics. She also discusses women’s voices in the archives and how studying archives has changed history for her.

*note: this was Melissa’s favorite interview!

Sadie Hugley

Ms. Hugley is a librarian in Georgia and has a library science degree from NCCU. She was active in the peace movement; a delegate to the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and was in the Fellowship of Southern Churchmen (FSC), an early interracial clerical civil rights organization.

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