From Popup Exhibit to YouTube Channel: Community Storytelling at Whim Museum, Virgin Islands
As I noted in other recent blog entries, I’ve been working with Whim Museum on St. Croix, Virgin Islands, on a community storytelling project. Our goal was to build a YouTube channel together based on their central mission: preserving the stories of people who have lived and worked on the island. And I’m happy to say we’ve surpassed expectation, with dozens of stories coming online, connecting with many themes of the museum’s mission.
Some of the stories and themes include:
Bringing out the best in people. We asked a question about their aspirations: “What would you like your legacy to be?” (ancestor discovery and legacy is one of the central themes of the museum):
Gathering spontaneous insights. This clip was a “mistake” but kept recording, and though it cut off early, it evoked a powerful theme that elicited a lot of head nodding as people listened to it: the importance of maintaining the Crucian dialect:
Adding to gaps in exhibits. This visitor talked about his father’s role in raising and training horses in the exhibit “Hass, Hassman, and Hass Racing”:
Incorporating new audiences. This honeymooning couple was interested in history, and points toward potential synergies with wedding and tourism industries:
Recording special visitors. One of the island’s esteemed poets, Mr. Richard Shrader, stopped by and recorded several stories which could be added to the museum’s collections, including these musings on story and legacy:
Setting it up. It worked out very well to do the recordings during the “Come Home to St. Croix” celebration days, using the momentum of the event to gather stories.
Love this page with all the interviews embedded.
Thanks Rachel! I have to say, there was something special about doing a community storytelling project in an island community 🙂