Project Overview and Outcome
The Oyster Bay Historical Society has strong ties with the Hood African Methodist Episcopal Church through past collaborations and Board of Trustee membership. This established relationship, together with funding provided by a Common Heritage grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, gives the Society the opportunity to set a foundation on which to build an archival collection that relates directly to the African-American experience in Oyster Bay.
The project invites congregants of the Hood A.M.E. Zion Church to one or more day-long events during which the Historical Society staff will oversee the digitization of the church community's cultural heritage materials. The goal is to preserve these personal and community collections in order to make them a resource to be shared through the Society's web site and through the Long Island Library Resources Council's Long Island Memories.
Preserving Community Collections:
The Oyster Bay Historical Society's Documentation of Cultural Heritage
Hood A.M.E. Zion Church's Community Digitization Day
Sharing Your Family History in the 21st Century
Sacred Sites Open House
Hood A.M.E. Zion Church and Pine Hollow Cemetery
Best Practices for Researching Family and Community History
What Will Happen on April 16?
1. As a participant, you will meet with a professional archivist or librarian who will have been trained specifically for the digitization event.
2. You will have a seat at one of three scanning stations where you can submit your personal collection materials for review.
3. At your scanning station, you will be able to provide your permission to share your collection with Historical Society visitors and researchers.
4. Your photographs, documents, and other collection materials will receive careful attention and handling from members of the Society's staff.
5. During the scanning process, you will have a chance to provide staff members with background on your family's connection with your collection materials.
6. After the scanning process, you will receive digital files of your materials to keep and to share with friends and family. Your original materials will be yours to carry back home with you.
Preservation Workshop with Nicole Menchise
Sharing Your Family History in the 21st Century
Saturday, April 30, 1:00 to 3:00 pm
Ever wonder why there aren't more historical documents searchable online? Wish it were easier to exchange genealogical information with other far-away members of your family?
By creating a digital archive of your personal items and creating easy-to-share audio recordings of interviews, you will be able to distribute your memories with family across the country and across the globe. With just a few simple steps you will learn how easy it is to preserve your keepsakes digitally and always have a back-up in case disaster strikes.
Topics will include hands-on teaching of the fundamentals of scanning and cataloging your photographs, photo albums, and scrapbook pages; how to record and share interviews and special occasions; and a quick look at some of the latest digital-scrapbook software packages available. You don't have to be a computer whiz to participate—just interested in preserving your family's history for future generations.
The workshop takes place on Saturday, April 30, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm in the Angela Koenig Research Center (behind the Earle-Wightman House), at 20 Summit Street in Oyster Bay. The afternoon's discussion will include examples from the Historical Society's archival collections. Light refreshments will be served.
Contact the Historical Society at 516-922-5032, or email Nicole Menchise at firstname.lastname@example.org for details or to make a reservation.
Sacred Sites Open House Weekend
Hood A.M.E. Zion Church & Pine Hollow Cemetery
Saturday, May 21
Scheduled events begin at Hood A.M.E. Zion Church at 137 South Street in Oyster Bay., with tours of the church and parsonage.
The Cultural Historic Tour will transport guests to the church's Pine Hollow Cemetery, where Civil War veterans of the 20th and 26th United States Colored Infantry are buried.
Picnic on the grounds of the Oyster Bay Historical Society at 20 Summit Street.
Sunday, May 22
Services at the Hood A.M.E. Zion Church. All are welcome.
Sacred Sites Open House Weekend, sponsored by the New York Landmarks Conservancy, encourages congregations throughout New York State to open their doors to the general public in order to promote broad support for the ongoing preservation of historic institutions.
On Saturday, June 11, at 2:00 the Oyster Bay Historical Society hosts a special panel discussion dedicated to current best practices for researching your family and community history. Joining in the discussion are Francis Carl and Denice Evans-Sheppard, authors of Footsteps of a Forgotten Soldier: The Life and Times of David Carll; Georgette Grier-Key, executive director and curator of Eastville Community Historical Society in Sag Harbor; and Nicole Menchise, librarian and archivist at the Oyster Bay Historical Society. The panel will consider a broad range of topics, such as establishing goals and expectations for your research, avoiding mistakes, managing your time and resources, and locating helpful and trustworthy sources of information. The ninety-minute program, moderated by Historical Society director Philip Blocklyn, will include time for audience questions and comments. Those in attendance should expect to find useful guidance in their own current projects, as well as inspiration to set out on new courses of research.
The discussion takes place in the Oyster Bay Historical Society’s Angela Koenig Center at 20 Summit Street in Oyster Bay, and is funded in part by a generous Common Heritage grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. Admission is free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.
Sponsored in part by a generous Common Heritage Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities
Francis S. Carl and Denice Evans-Sheppard, authors
Footsteps of a Forgotten Soldier: The Life and Times of David Carll
Georgette Grier-Key, executive director and curator
Eastville Community Historical Society
Nicole Menchise, archivist and librarian
Oyster Bay Historical Society
Philip Blocklyn, moderator
Oyster Bay Historical Society
A direct descendant of Civil War veteran and Oyster Bay resident David Carll, Francis Carl felt drawn to the story of his family’s history from an early age. A graduate of Central Islip High School, he served in The United States Army for three years before attending college at Long Island University and Central Texas College. Currently a federal government contractor for the Department of Justice, he feels that his close proximity to the National Archives and the African American Civil War Museum in Washington, DC, has been instrumental in telling the Carll family story.
Author and publisher Denice Evans-Sheppard has been at work researching her family’s history for most of her life, following the narratives handed down to her from her parents and grandparents. Currently living in the house of Civil War veteran David Carll, she and her cousin Frank Carl have both shown a great passion for bringing the story of their ancestor to life. A board member of the Oyster Bay Historical Society and freelance contributor to the Oyster Bay Guardian, she owns Carll Hill Publishing Emporium, an outlet for developing writers to publish their work.
Outspoken advocate for the preservation and celebration of Long Island history and endangered historic sites, Georgette Grier-Key serves as Executive Director and Curator of Eastville Community Historical Society of Sag Harbor, New York. Founded in 1981 and chartered by New York State in 1986, the Society preserves the history of the working-class community of Eastville and tells the story of St. David AME Zion Church. Widely believed to have been a stop along the Underground Railroad, the church was built in 1839 on Eastville Avenue by African Americans and Native Americans.
Since 2010, Nicole Menchise has worked as librarian and archivist at the Oyster Bay Historical Society, where she has developed a popular series of public programs on best practices for preserving family history. Her degrees include studies in geography, cartography, and history at the University of Memphis and library science at Long Island University’s Palmer School of Library and Information Science, where she also received the Advanced Certificate in Archives and Records Management. Her column Behind the Times appears regularly in the Oyster Bay Enterprise-Pilot.