University of Florida’s Samuel Proctor Oral History Program Interviews Lumbee Elders--Press Release
Pembroke, NC (August 24, 2022)- Fifty years ago, Dr. Adolph Dial began to interview and collect stories from Lumbee elders. These interviews were recorded, in part, by the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program (SPOHP) staff as part of the Doris Duke Native American Oral History Project. They are currently housed at the University of Florida. This month, that project continued as researchers from the University of Florida’s Samuel Proctor Oral History Program (SPOHP) traveled to the Lumbee Tribal territory to resume interviewing Lumbee elders as a means to revitalize and record new oral histories.
Over a 2-year period the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation (DDCF) has granted more than $1.6 Million to the Association of Tribal Archives, libraries and museums and seven universities to increase access to, use of and visibility of a vast collection of Native American oral histories spanning 150 Indigenous cultures.
“We recognize the Native oral history collections’ importance, both in providing Native communities with a continuing connection to elders and longstanding traditions, and as educational resources and authentic representations of Native American history for us all. We are thrilled to fund this effort to preserve and amplify the reach of these stories,” said Lola Adedokun, program director for child well-being at the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation.
The SPOHP interviewed a number of elders over a three-day period. The elders discussed a variety of topics including Lumbee farm life in the 20th century, Lumbee food traditions, plants, Lumbee stories and healing. Tribal Chairman Lowery said one of his goals coming into office was preservation of Lumbee stories, culture and heritage by recording the stories of Lumbee elders. “This project builds on the legacy of Adolph Dial and what he started decades ago. I am happy we are in a position to carry this forward for future generations,” said Lowery.
Thank you to Adolfho Romero, Angelica McGee and Vasilios Kosmakos, Deborah Hendrix and all the SPOHP Team for your hard work on this project, but more importantly for your kindness to our elders. The Lumbee Tribe was directly involved in the interview process. The SPOHP staff has made every effort to work with and include the Lumbee Tribe Staff in this ongoing process, with the ultimate goal to make Lumbee Oral Histories more accessible. The new Lumbee oral histories include video footage. They will be available in the coming weeks. The collection is available at https://ufdc.ufl.edu/collections/oh4/results?filter=subjects%3ALumbee%20Oral%20History%20Collection