OHA Reflection #2

The best part of the conference, for me, was Saturday morning from 10:15-12:00, which was the Digital and Community Showcase.  Similar in format to a poster session, only with more digital aspects or posters showcasing digital projects, the purpose of this was to engage in conversation with others who were interested in your project or whose project interested you.  All of the participants in this showcase were demonstrating how they have adapted to the newest technology and in which directions they are taking oral history projects.  My colleague and I presented on Overhills during this showcase. 
Overhills at the Community and Digital Showcase, OHA 2008

Overhills at the Community and Digital Showcase, Oral History Association 2008

During the showcase, people asked us about Overhills as a place, about the oral history project, and about how we are presenting the oral history project. Explaining how we are presenting it is something that makes us proud.  The project is not complete yet (estimated completion, early 2009), but the brief explanation is that we are producing (with the help of a contractor) a flash program which will offer a virtual tour of Overhills.  Viewers will have the opportunity to learn about Overhills through interview clips and photographs, organized by topics, through a timeline that offers brief decade by decade history, or through the interactive map which will help to spatially orient the viewer on these 10,500 acres. The interactive map begins with a base map, from which a viewer can choose certain areas of the estate. This area map then links to individual buildings with photographs, building histories, and information about the people who lived there.  Our hope is that anyone will find this presentation of public history interesting, as it faciliates a self-guided tour during which the viewer is never locked in to topic or media section.
If you’re interested in learning more about our interactive flash media project, please let me know. I’d be happy to answer any questions. Once the project is complete, it will be available to anyone by contacting the Fort Bragg Cultural Resources office.
I always enjoy talking to people about Overhills and explaining the oral history project, particularly because we are attempting to take it beyond typical oral history research, by combining all of our available elements.  People at the showcase responded well.  Let me know what you think!
More interesting sessions from the OHA to follow, and photographs, as well a few side trips.  And then Preservation in Pink will resume to normal programming. Thanks for reading!