The Native American Oral Histories Collection at the University of Utah, funded by the Doris Duke Foundation in 1966 and completed in collaboration with The American West Center under the guidance of C. Gregory Crampton, contains reel-to-reel audio tapes recorded between 1949 and 1972. The recordings consist of interviews with Indigenous Peoples including but not limited to tribal groups such as Zuni Pueblo, Navajo, Shoshone, Ute, and Paiute, as well as their non-Indigenous neighbors. The interviews cover topics such as traditional knowledge, social and cultural beliefs, tribal termination and relocation, personal life experiences, connection to the land, and views on the urbanization of American Indian peoples. The bulk of the project was completed in five years and includes over 2,000 hours of interviews with approximately 1000 individuals. The audiotapes were later digitized between 2005 and 2006 where they continue to be maintained by staff at the J. Willard Marriott Library in Salt Lake City.
Today, library staff at the J. Willard Marriott Library are working to improve the collection’s metadata standards and practices. In an effort to elevate our role as stewards of this content we are collaborating with tribal partners, updating outdated collection descriptions, flagging historical materials that contain harmful language and statements, writing cultural protocols, and updating the platform on which this content is presented. The University of Utah in collaboration with six other repositories, the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, and Museums (ATALM), and numerous tribal entities are expanding the project to include materials through Mukurtu.
As the project progresses, the following changes may occur regarding this collection:
- Restriction of certain materials
- Removal of certain materials
- Changes in material descriptions
If you are an original interviewee, a relative of the original interviewee, would like to report harmful materials, or have questions regarding any of the content, please email email@example.com to connect with staff at the J. Willard Marriott Library directly.
Below is a list of current Tribal groups represented in our collection. This list is subject to change as the project progresses:
Acoma Pueblo, Cayuga Nation, Cherokee Nation, Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes, Cocopah Indian Tribe, Comanche Nation, Crow Creek Sioux Nation, Crow Nation, Deleware Tribe of Indians, Elko Band Colony: Te-Moak Tribe of Shoshone, Gros Ventre Cree Tribe, Athapaskan, Ho-Chunk Nation, Hopi Tribe, Kaibab Band of Paiutes, Ione Band of Miwok Indians, Kickapoo Tribe of Oklahoma, Lakota, Luiseño Tribe, Los Coyotes Band of Cahuilla and Cupeño Indians, Minnesota Chippewa (unknown band), Morongo Band of Mission Indians, Muscogee Creek Nation, Navajo Nation, Nez Perce Tribe, Northern Ute Tribe, Northwestern Shoshone, Oneida Nation, Osage Nation, Paiute Indian Tribe of Utah, Pawnee Nation, Pomo Tribe, Pueblo of Laguna, Pueblo of Zuni, Sac and Fox Nation, Salt River Pima-Mericopa Indian Community, Sante Sioux Nation, Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, Shoshone-Bannock at Ft. Hall Reservation, Southern Ute Tribe of Shoshone, Tewa Pueblos, The Havasupai Tribe, The Hualapai Tribe, Tlingit Tribe of Alaska, Uintah and Ouray Indian Reservation and Agency, Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, and White Mountain Apache.