SCF Invites Latino Community to Record Oral Histories

(Bradenton, Fla., Jan. 26, 2016) – State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) Libraries launch the second series of events in the Latino Americans: 500 Years of History project, funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the American Library Association (ALA). On Jan. 27, SCF Libraries begin recording a series of interviews with local Latino families sharing immigration stories. Families from Manatee and Sarasota are invited and encouraged to record stories to share with the community. The compilation of oral history series will be preserved in the Libraries’ Digital Repository for viewing and is open to the public.

“By providing the community with opportunities to share oral histories, by facilitating discussions and reflections on their history, and by sharing opportunities to learn from themselves and one another, community members attending these programs will be empowered to document, share and most importantly, celebrate their culture and history, as well as those of their neighbors,” wrote Alicia Long, SCF Library Specialist, in the winning grant application. Locally, according to the U.S. Census, slightly more than 15 percent of the Manatee County population is Hispanic or Latino, a percentage nearly mirrored by the student body at SCF.

 Dr. Tracy Elliott, SCF Libraries Director and the daughter of a Latino immigrant, said, “Latino Americans are the country’s largest minority group, with more than 50 million people, and still many people are unaware of their rich and varied history and culture. I’m thrilled that the SCF Libraries have this opportunity to explore this topic in our community.” SCF was chosen as one of 203 grant recipients selected from across the country to hold public programming such as film screenings, discussion groups, oral history initiatives, local history exhibitions, multi-media projects and performances about Latino history and culture.

The SCF Libraries have many Latino-focused resources, including Informe Académico, a database of Spanish language periodicals, and “The Latino American Experience” (an ABC-Clio database) among others, as well as a vast collection of books and eBooks about Latino Americans and Latino issues. Members of the community with a public library card are able to access the book collections.

To schedule an oral history recording or for details and a schedule of events, visit or contact Alicia Long at 941-752-5404.

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