I always had it at the back of my mind--I got a story to tell. After
I retired, I had a chance to tell it.
Now that you have interviewed older members of your family or community about folklore and oral history, what can you do with the materials you have collected? There are a number of ways to preserve and present your findings. You may simply want to index and/or transcribe your materials and store them where you and other members of your family or community can have easy access to them, such as with a family member, in a scrapbook, or at a local archive.
If you have interviewed your grandmother about traditional foodways and recipes that have been passed down through the generations, you may want to put together a family recipe book illustrated with snapshots of grandmother cooking in the kitchen at holiday gatherings and family meals. Or you may want to write a family history, compile an annotated family photo album, or make a scrapbook filled with keepsakes, mementos, old photos, reminiscences, and other items that embody and preserve your family heritage.
If you have interviewed older people in your community about local traditions, customs, and history, you may want to write and produce a newsletter or magazine featuring the folkways of your local area (see Foxfire, edited by Eliot Wigginton, listed in "For Further Reading").
Older people themselves can capture and share their memories and experiences with others through needlework, painting, woodcarving, writing an autobiography, and other kinds of life review projects.
Presented on the next few pages are several ways to present family folklore and local history. We hope that they help to give you some ideas about how you might present your own materials.
MORE ON PRESENTING YOUR FINDINGS