Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Spoken Irish from early 20th Century online in audio files

On a tip from the Genealogy Blog by Jean-Yves BAXTER, I took a look at The Doegen Records Web Project. Since I have a background in Linguistics, I was fascinated by the concept and the execution of this wonderful website. Quoting from the website:
The site is an archive of Irish dialect sound recordings made during 1928-31 contains folktales, songs and other material recited by native Irish speakers from 17 counties. Crucially, it includes examples of dialects that are now extinct. The collection also includes a speech in English by W.T. Cosgrave, who was head of the Irish government that funded the recording scheme.
This website has a concept that needs to be expanded to other cultures and other venues. If we are interested in preserving the stories, how about preserving the language used in the stories. For many years I have been listening to StoryCorps, preserving the stories and experiences of everyday people. As genealogists, I realize that I don't hear much about our oral tradition and preserving that tradition for the future as well as trying to preserve what little we have of that tradition in the past.

It is not as easy to preserve an audio recording as it is to keep a piece of paper, but think of the impact an audio recording of an ancestor's voice might have on the generations to come. I recently purchased an updated digital recorder to record some stories from one of my friends who is in her 90s. These are priceless and cannot be duplicated (only copied) once the person is gone.

Listen to the voices of these Irish recordings and think what you might do to record your own archive.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I truly appreciate your efforts and I am waiting for your next write ups thanks once again.