Donegal children and adults are being encouraged to become amateur historians as a way of keeping in contact with older relatives during the Covid-19 crisis.
The Donegal County Archives is launching an oral history project to guide people as they explore their family’s fascinating past.
How much do you know about your family’s past? Could this be a good time to find out more?
As a result of social distancing measures most of us are at home and separated from loved ones. Gathering family and local stories is one way we can feel closer.
How to get involved:
- Children and young people are being asked to reach out to grandparents or older people in the community who are confined to their homes.
- Download the questionnaire and advice sheet from the Donegal Archives website.
- Phone your grandparent and discuss one or two questions each day.
- Write down or record the interviews.
Donegal County Archives encourages adults to also get involved in this project by reaching out to your own parents and older family/community members. Older people can use the questionnaire as a starting point for recording their own memories and family history.
As the renowned Oral historian Thomas Mac Conmara recently said in an interview with Ryan Tubridy “Now is the time to reach out, to say to somebody; your life stories, your memories are important. I guarantee you…you will never regret it.”
Resources are available on the Donegal County Archives website; http://www.donegalcoco.ie/
These include interview questionnaires for children and adults and advice on carrying out interviews. There are also links to sources which will help you carry out family and local research.
The Donegal County Archives is launching this oral history project as part of our (Peace IV) funded ‘Echoes of the Decade’ project. This is a joint project with the Donegal County Museum and focuses on the Decade of Centenaries (1912-23).
The Echoes of the Decade project involves workshops with students & heritage groups and oral history interviews with older people. Although workshops are temporarily suspended, you can still take part by getting involved in this oral and local history project. We hope to resume the project in full once restrictions have been lifted. If your school or heritage group would like to be involved please contact us.
Information about the project will be posted to the Donegal Archives Facebook page. If you have any questions about the project or your own research you can contact us by email/ Facebook messenger.
Please safely keep any research you do as part of this project, including any interesting old photos/ materials. We are planning an exhibition at the end of the Echoes of the Decade project; your work could be included. Please post/email your completed questionnaires to either of the addresses below.