The HistoryMakers

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Case Western Reserve University partners with “The HistoryMakers,” providing access to national African-American oral-history collection

Case Western Reserve University has launched a partnership with “The HistoryMakers,” providing its students, faculty and staff with access to thousands of African-American oral history videos, including information highlighting the university and its alumni.

Case Western Reserve has licensed The HistoryMakers Digital Archive, making the university the first organization in Cleveland to have access to the collection.  The subscription is funded by the university’s Office for Inclusion, Diversity and Equal Opportunity and the Kelvin Smith Library.

“This is a valuable resource for our students, faculty and staff,” said Marilyn S. Mobley, PhD, the university’s vice president for Diversity and Equal Opportunity. “It was fascinating to see that there are at least 15 alumni from—and more than 100 stories about—Case Western Reserve in the collection.”

The history collection will be an excellent resource for university academic programs, especially the newly established African and African American Studies minor and the Social Justice Institute minor.  Dominic Ozanne, president and CEO of Ozanne Construction Company, Inc., and a CWRU board trustee brought the idea of subscribing to HistoryMakers to the university.  He commended senior leaders, including CWRU President Barbara Snyder and Dr. Mobley, for supporting HistoryMakers.  In addition, senior leaders commended Associate Provost and University Librarian Arnold Hirshon for his role in making HistoryMakers accessible to the campus community.

“We look forward to significant usage of this rich material to further the learning and research at CWRU regarding the African-American experience – locally, nationally and internationally,” said Hirshon.

Established in 1999, HistoryMakers is the world’s largest African-American oral-history video archive. HistoryMakers has more than 2, 000 videotaped interviews, with more than 300 digitized. It plans to interview and preserve a total of 5, 000 videos.

Members of the CWRU community can access the digital material at:

and then selecting “HistoryMakers Digital Archive.”

Others can access the HistoryMakers archives by visiting:

but a subscription is required to access the digital library and streaming videos. The digital streaming videos are also available to community members who visit the Kelvin Smith Library during regular business hours.