Portraits & Oral Histories Oberlin Oral Histories Project
Through portraits and oral histories from elders and community members, Voices of Oberlin was an exhibition at the Block Gallery from June 14 through September 22, 2023, that emphasized how special the Oberlin Village community was and still is. A Reconstruction-era settlement of free African Americans, Oberlin Village produced citizens who made significant contributions to North Carolina and the nation. What makes this community so great are its families and institutions.
The exhibition was curated by Michael S. Williams of the Black On Black Project, with photography by Derrick Beasley and Teresa Moore and oral histories edited by Tamisha Thomas of TooMuchTV Productions.
Portraits & Oral Histories
Below are the portraits that were featured in the exhibition. Use the link in the portrait's caption to listen to the oral histories.
Oberlin Oral Histories Project
Oberlin Oral Histories is a partnership project with the Friends of Oberlin Village and Raleigh Arts. In 2017 as a part of the Percent for Art Program associated with the Transportation Bond, Raleigh Arts began working with Friends of Oberlin Village and residents to develop the scope for a public art project along Oberlin Road.
During engagement, it became clear that capturing the voices of the Oberlin elders and original residents of Oberlin Village was vital for both the public art project and the City of Raleigh. Oral Histories were taken from 27 members of Oberlin Village selected by Friends of Oberlin Village. The interviews were taken throughout 2020-2021, mostly through virtual recording, due to the Covid 19 pandemic.
Listen to the Oberlin Oral Histories