What is StoryCorps and StoryCorps DIY?

StoryCorps is a national nonprofit whose mission is to preserve and share humanity’s stories to build connections between people and create a more just and compassionate world.  This is done by offering people the space and time to come together, share important memories and have their conversation preserved for generations to come at the Library of Congress.

A StoryCorps interview is an opportunity to record an uninterrupted, intentional conversation with someone you know about anything you’d like, from favorite memories to important life questions.

StoryCorps DIY provides libraries and other organizations guides to use the StoryCorps model in a small community focused environment.

Watch this short video to learn how StoryCorps began:


For more about StoryCorps,click the link below:


Why is the library hosting a StoryCorps DIY?

Cedarburg prides itself on local history and what better way to preserve local history than through the voices of our residents who can share stories about themselves, their relationships, and their ties to Cedarburg.  These stories will be collected, by permission, and archived on our library website.

Goals of CPL StoryCorps DIY are:

  • Community Engagement: Preserve the life stories of our community members and facilitate meaningful interactions between people. Listening to interviews can be just as valuable as participating. 
  • Partnerships with Community Organizations: Forge meaningful connections with other partner organizations on a shared project goal. We hope to partner with other interested organizations wanting to preserve local stories. 
  • Archiving: Preserve the history of our community by the development of a local archive and add voices and perspectives as the years go by.

How to get started

  • Decide if you would like to use a Library facilitator for your interview or check out our DIY StoryCorps kit to take home. 
  • Decide who you would like to interview, it could be a family member a friend or someone you know who you think has an interesting story to tell. 
  • Because we would like our project to include a Cedarburg memory, include a question that prompts the person being interviewed to recall a particular event, place, or memory of Cedarburg, if possible.

Review sample interviews for inspiration at https://storycorps.org/

How to finish

If you would like the library to archive your story, sign the release form.  You will also have the recording for you to keep.

Please take a picture of the two of you so we can post it to our web page along with the interview.  Email the picture to Jeff Messerman at jmesserman@cedarburglibrary.org or, a staff member at the library can assist you with a picture.

Help spread the word about the StoryCorps DIY project at Cedarburg Public Library and recommend it to your friends and family.