About Us

 

The Institute for Oral History creates oral history memoirs by preserving a sound recording and transcript of interviews with individuals who are eyewitnesses to history. Together with our interviewees, we document memories representing the diversity of American society and encompassing varied topics of social and historical significance. We encourage oral history scholarship through fellowships, graduate assistantships, and training workshops, and we share the outcomes of our oral history research through publications and public programming.

Located in Central Texas, USA, the Institute for Oral History is a freestanding research department within Baylor University's Division of Academic Affairs. Our oral history memoirs assist scholars whose research covers such specialized areas as religion and culture, civil rights, music and theater, historic preservation, rural life, and women's studies, as well as selected topics in economics, law, education, and politics. In addition, our oral history collection provides essential information for research in historical topics concerning Baylor University, Texas Baptists, Hispanic Baptists, and Waco and McLennan County, Texas.

Having provided leadership among organized oral historians since our inception, the Institute for Oral History

  • is a sponsoring member of the Oral History Association (OHA), of which Director Stephen Sloan is Past-President and Senior Editor & Collection Manager Steven Sielaff serves as a member of the OHA Metadata Task Force;
  • hosts the Texas Oral History Association, of which Assistant Director Adrienne Cain is Secretary-Treasurer and Steven Sielaff serves on the Board of Directors;
  • participates in H-Oralhist, the oral history online discussion listserv, of which Editor Michelle Holland and University Researcher Jessica Roseberry are editors, and Steven Sielaff is managing editor and technical advisor;
  • and is active in the international oral history community through the International Oral History Association, which was attended in 2014 in Barcelona by Stephen Sloan and Michelle Holland, and through the Oral History Society (UK), where Steven Sielaff presented at the 2016 annual conference in London, England.