The Veteran’s Administration is asking Americans honor veterans by recording their stories.” The Veterans History Project collects and preserves the remembrances of American wartime veterans through recordings and personal interviews that will end up in the Library of Congress.
Janet Kaufmann, Voluntary Service Specialist at the Dorn VA Medical Center in Columbia says high school and college students have been getting the stories from the veterans.
She says, “The information is wonderful, because they really haven’t had anyone do this before. And presently we have two volunteers of college students who are actually studying history at the University of South Carolina,and another volunteer who is actually a retired Marine officer, doing this together.”
The recordings are vetted for facts. “Eventually this stuff is all put on tape, and then the volunteers and myself, we transcribe it and put it all on computer, we go over it and then we print it up. We meet with the actual veteran, his or her family, as well as the social worker and head nurse of the ward, and we discuss all this,” she says.
The volunteers register with the Library of Congress, says Kaufman.”It’s documented. It’s something that’s permanently in the Library of Congress. It’s something anyone go in and read about. Like if you were to go the the Library of Congress and you wanted to find out about a veteran of WWII. Or if you have a person’s name, you can look it up either way.”
Approximately 65,000 individual stories now comprise the collection of the Veterans History project.