The HampStory project is a grassroots based story gathering effort that celebrates community history and learning at Hampshire College.
We are asking participants to record at least one five-minute interview on a specific question or subject of their choosing. You can also record a longer interview (no longer than an hour). If recording a longer interview, please review it and select and recommend a five-minute section that you feel is the most interesting and/or pertinent to celebrating Hampshire’s community history.
In order to have interviews shared via the Archives, all participants (interviewer and interviewee(s) must sign this release form and upload the file. Please also provide a short description of the interview, the participants, date and time the interview took place, and a summary of the subject matter.
It is best to have a prompt/event/organization/memory already in mind before the interview begins. Ideas of sample questions to consider for the interview include:
- What about your participation in this group (or effort) significantly impacted the college curriculum or environment?
- Why did you get involved in this action?
- How did this experience change you?
- How did it change Hampshire?
- Did your actions have any effect on what you studied?
- What did you learn that you carried with you into the rest of your life?
- How do you look back on that experience now?
Below are three methods for collecting stories that have been used and tested by members of the 50th Anniversary History Committee.
Zoom is recommended for one on one and group sessions to record both video and audio. With permission of participants, the session can be recorded, either via speaker view or gallery view. The session is automatically recorded in video and audio formats, and a transcription, which needs to be checked for accuracy, is automatically generated. Information on how to conduct this kind of session via Zoom can be found below.
- Choose a specific group or co-participant, i.e. classmates, event organizers, activists, team-mates, staff etc.
- Contact participants to arrange a Zoom meeting.
- Secure release forms before recording. Important forms include the Oral History Consent Form and the Deed of Gift Form. Have them sent both to yourself and the College Archivist at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Limiting the recordings to 5-7 minutes, participants will have time to recollect and add further commentary that supports the memory or shared experience.
- The facilitator will set the Zoom view to “Speaker,” push the record button and make this introduction: “This is [your name]. Today is [month/day/year]. I am in conversation with [name of co-participant], and we are sharing a memory about [thing/topic—e.g. “Mixed Nuts,” “the Cole Science building takeover,” “the founding of the College,” etc. ] related to this picture of [brief description of image—e.g. “the yurt,” “the Art Barn,” “the Div-Free Bell,” etc.] for the HampStory Project using Zoom. I am in [town, state], and my co-participant is located in [town, state]. I am sharing this memory as part of a project created by the History Sub-Committee to commemorate the 50th Anniversary Celebration of Hampshire College.”
The quality of the recordings made on this format is greatly increased by upload speeds above 1 or 2 mbps. If your upload speed is less than 1 mbps it is recommended that you use the other two options mentioned below.
For more information on how to conduct this kind of session via Zoom can be found here:
Story Glory is a smart phone app that allows two participants to share a photograph and record a conversation and/or interview about the memories that are prompted by the photograph.
This smart phone app allows you to share a photograph to be part of HampStory and record and share memories prompted by the photograph. StoryGlory converts the image and your audio to a video file and provides a shareable link to the video.
To use StoryGlory, you will need to first download the app to your smartphone. Next, upload a photo from your camera roll to the StoryGlory app. Using the record function, record your memories or story related to the photo. Take some time to reflect on the people, places, events, and feelings that come to mind. You should begin with the following introduction:
“This is [your name]. Today is [month/day/year]. I am sharing this memory about [thing/topic—e.g. “Mixed Nuts,” “the Cole Science building takeover,” “the founding of the College,” etc. ] related to this picture of [brief description of image—e.g. “the yurt,” “the Art Barn,” “the Div-Free Bell,” etc.] for the HampStory Project using the StoryGlory app. I am in [town, state]. I am sharing this memory as part of a project created by the History Sub-Committee to commemorate the 50th Anniversary Celebration of Hampshire College.”
When you are finished recording your memory, you can download the file to your phone using the download icon or you can share the link to the StoryGlory file directly with HampStory from your phone using the share icon (please send via email to email@example.com) so others can enjoy your memories and add their own. Those with the link can utilize the app or watch your video memory on any phone, tablet, or computer.
Smartphone Built-In Recording Apps
You can also use a voice recording app on your phone. On an iPhone this app is called voice memos, and on Android the app is called sound recorder. With current technologies, it’s easy to conduct an oral history interview using either a voice or video recording app. Most smartphones have these preinstalled.
If you are interested in improving the sound or recording quality on your phone, you may also use auxiliary accessories such as a plug-in microphone or a tripod. For possible accessories and dedicated oral history apps, follow this link and scroll down to heading “Smartphones as Recorders.”
If you have any questions or general feedback about the HampStory Project, please contact the College Archivist, Jessica C. Neal, at firstname.lastname@example.org.