Interview process for oral history project concludes

In 2014, the Mississippi Humanities Council (MHC) awarded a grant to Alcorn State University for an oral history project entitled “Alcorn in the 1960s: A Collection of Oral Histories.”

The grant proposal was submitted to MHC by a committee within the Department of English and Foreign Languages at Alcorn comprised of Dr. Kathleen Keys, Dr. Peter R. Malik and Dr. Anne-Marie Obilade.

Beginning in the spring 2015, a total of 13 interviews were conducted with individuals who graduated from Alcorn during the years from 1960 through 1969. The interviewees were queried on topics such as academics, fraternity/sorority life, athletics, fashion and civic participation.

“The interviewees told fascinating stories about their lives as undergraduates at Alcorn during a very important time in the university’s history,” Malik said. “The committee members were honored to speak with these graduates, one of who worked directly with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on civil rights issues.”

Now that the interviews have been collected, they will be professionally transcribed at the Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage at the University of Southern Mississippi. The master tapes containing the interviews will remain at the USM library where they will be permanently archived.

A copy of the tapes will be placed in Alcorn’s Archives/Special Collections Department at the J. D. Boyd Library. All members of the Alcorn community will have access to the recordings.

The project was made possible by a grant from the Mississippi Humanities Council, through support from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any view, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or the Mississippi Humanities Council.

Caption for picture: Dr. Malvin Williams was one of the interviewees for the Alcorn State University Oral History Project. He is shown at left with Ms. Kathleen Keys, Dr. Anne-Marie Obilade and Dr. Peter Malik, the members of the project’s committee. The project was funded through a grant from the Mississippi Humanities Council.

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