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Charleston County Public Library: Capturing Community Stories

Case Studies

Charleston County Public Library: Capturing Community Stories

Emily Paulos

Charleston, South Carolina has a rich history and oral storytelling heritage, and the Charleston County Public Library (CCPL) is one of the hosting partners of the annual Charleston Tells Storytelling Festival each spring. In 2014, CCPL decided to add a digital component to the storytelling festival. 

In 2015, we facilitated a three-day digital storytelling workshop with 10 members of the Charleston community who had applied and were selected by committee to participate. The workshop was the kickoff of a 10-month project featuring various workshops by CCPL, to promote storytelling and encourage area residents to preserve stories for future generations. The stories covered a range of topics: a Gullah/Geechee heritage passed down from father to daughter, a man finding the dog tags of his beloved brother lost in Vietnam, a woman learning the special family recipes from her mother in-law, and more.

The stories created in the workshop were featured during a special premiere at the 2015 Charleston Tells Storytelling Festival, and they will also be housed on the library’s website.