Students in US History and Advanced Placement US History worked to gather and interpret the memories and stories of Pittsburgh area veterans who served between 1941-1973. Appearing in this video: George D'Angelo, Fran Rifugiato, John Carter, Julia Parsons, Sam Harper, George Metz, Clem Blazewick, Bob Daley.
Working with their teachers, Callie Gropp, Joshua Andy, and Dr. Michael Naragon, and with Todd DePastino (Veterans Breakfast Club) and Kevin Farkas (Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative), the students completed intensive preparation, including workshops on the oral history process, lectures on special considerations when interviewing veterans, active listening, and oral history ethics.
From there, students learned about the context of their veterans’ service and collaboratively developed a list of interview questions. Working as a team, students conducted the oral history interviews. Using the stories they collected as a window into the human dimensions of war, combat, military service, etc., students worked to select meaningful moments, memories, or stories from their interviews, and to analyze and interpret the history they collected.
In the interpretations of their interviews, students worked to move beyond a mere summary of events, to pay close attention to the veteran’s story and the storytelling process. The clips they selected were used in the creation of a composite documentary.
This video is a production of the Veteran Voices of Pittsburgh Oral History Initiative, in partnership with the nonprofit Veterans Breakfast Club.