A Treasure Story

Getting Started

Oral History Guidelines

Getting Started

Welcome to the Charlotte County Archives – Oral History Interview Guideline and Tips for Seniors/ Students/ Volunteers. In just a few steps, we will guide you through how to conduct a thorough and complete oral history interview with a senior in your community. To understand how to conduct a proper oral history interview you must first understand the purpose of the interview. So, what is the definition of Oral History?

Oral History Defined

Oral history is a field of study and a method of gathering, preserving, and interpreting the voices and
memories of people, communities, and participants in past events. An oral history interview generally
consists of a well-prepared interviewer questioning an interviewee and recording their exchange in
audio or video format. Recordings of the interview are then transcribed, summarized, or indexed and
then placed in a library or archives. Oral history interviews serve to be useful for all forms of public
presentation. (Examples: used in a publication, used for radio or video documentaries, museum
exhibitions, dramatizations, etc.)

Today's Stories are Tomorrows History

Join us in collecting and preserving Charlotte County memories of all the families, traditions, historic events, historical landmarks/buildings and so much more. Below you will find a complete guide on the three distinct phases of an oral history interview: the pre-interview, the interview itself, and the post-interview. Remember that if it is done right your interview will help you and others learn about the past through the eyes of someone who lived it and this is an invaluable resource.

Oral History Interview Guidelines

Steps to Performing a Thorough Oral History Interview

Double click on the links to view our complete, start to finish guideline of how to conduct an oral history interview. Please note the location of your interview when selecting the appropriate document to open: Interviewee’s Home, Public Place, Your Location, Zoom Cloud Meeting or Over the Phone.

``How To`` Instructions

Double click on the link to view tips on how to prepare questions and leads for the interview, how to create and host a zoom cloud meeting, how to attend a zoom cloud meeting and how to upload your video and audio recordings to your computer and a USB memory stick.

Handwritten Notes template

Please select the link below to view and/or print.

Oral History Interview – Handwritten Notes

Release Form

(To be signed by the interviewee before the interview.)

Select the link below to view and print a release form for the interviewee to sign prior to the interview.

Submission Checklist

Oral Histories Collection Template

Follow the link below to “Submitting Your
Stories”. Here you will find a checklist of
material to be submitted (hand written notes,
waiver, collected material such as photographs,
articles, letters, etc).
Once you have collected all your data, attach the
information to an email and send it to the
Charlotte County Archives.

Check Mark