Local historian Mike Miron spent the last 25 years of his life collecting over 200 interviews of Eastport locals. Upon his death, the impressive collection was donated to the Annapolis Maritime Museum (AMM). Portions of his collection are now available in the museum’s online database; however, AMM is seeking help in its effort to continue to preserve these local memories.
Miron’s recordings focused heavily on the stories of local boat builders. The museum’s new Oral History Project is designed to more fully preserve his contributions while also adding to it. New interviews which focus on the area’s broader maritime history are being conducted by museum volunteers.
Each new interview collected in the Oral History Project is recorded using digital technology and then archived by a team of trained volunteers. With signed releases in hand, the museum will continue to post audio and word searchable versions of transcripts on the research portal, available at www.amaritimestg.wpengine.com.
Creation of the database to support the museum’s collection began in 2014, under the direction of Curator and Museum Manager Caitlin Swaim.
“By capturing the voices of our community and sharing them with the world, the museum is making a significant contribution to preserving the heritage of Eastport, Annapolis, and the Chesapeake Bay,” Swaim said. “Our archiving process places the interviews we conduct out of harm’s way and promotes future access by researchers and families of the interviewees.”
Museum volunteers have donated hundreds of hours to the Mike Miron project already. Longtime volunteer and project lead, John Gudas, coordinates the interview and archival processes. Additional volunteers are needed for this continuing effort.
Those interested in volunteering or being interviewed should email Caitlin Swaim.