The Chattanooga Public Library has created a platform to collect stories, photos, videos, oral histories and other memorabilia from local residents and organizations. The website, chattanoogamemory.com, opens to the public on Thursday.
“The Chattanooga Memory Project is designed to capture the city’s history from individuals,” said Corinne Hill, executive director of the Chattanooga Public Library. “We know everyone who lives here has their own story to tell, and we want all of those viewpoints included in Chattanooga’s story.”
The library is asking current and former area residents to visit the user-friendly website to contribute their personal Chattanooga stories and memories. Community members can upload their memories as photos, videos, voice recordings, text or a combination of these. Ms. Hill said the purpose of the Chattanooga Memory Project is to archive the city’s history, and no memory is too small to preserve. “We want the whole Chattanooga story,” she said.
Modeled after the highly successful Singapore Memory Project, which launched in 2011 to capture that country’s history, the Chattanooga Memory Project platform was built by Pass It Down, winners of the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce’s 2017 Spirit of Innovation Award.
The Chattanooga Memory Project will contribute to citizens’ 21st century skills, especially their ability to create media products and to apply technology effectively. “Learning about other Chattanoogans’ personal histories will help community members develop social and cross-cultural skills, too,” Ms. Hill said. “It gives people the opportunity to experience their city through perspectives they may not have otherwise encountered, and it captures the messiness of life that makes Chattanooga the wonderful city it is today.”
In addition to individuals, the Chattanooga Memory Project will also collect moments and memories from local organizations, associations, companies, and groups, establishing their place in the city’s history.
The vision of the Chattanooga Public Library is “an inspired, connected and engaged Chattanooga” with a population committed to lifelong learning, Ms. Hill noted. “The Chattanooga Memory Project fulfills that mission in a truly meaningful way.”
The Chattanooga Memory Project website can be accessed from any computer or mobile device that is connected to the internet. All branches of the Library provide free computer and Wi-Fi access to the public during regular hours.
For more information, visit chattanoogamemory.com and chattlibrary.com.