All sites are open, and appointments are needed for the Library.

Our Community Survey is now live!

Complete the Individuals and Family Survey — answer questions about your experiences in Schenectady

Complete the Organizational Survey — answer questions based upon your knowledge of a particular organization

Acknowledging that primary sources are the keys to understanding history and access to those materials helps communities to connect to their past, the African American Historical Records Project will create an online catalog of historical records with the Black Community in Schenectady.

Our goal is to identify where those records are, what condition they are in, and how researchers can access them. We hope the catalog and the records uncovered during the project will become a foundation for future research, preservation, and education. African Americans have been part of Schenectady since colonial times, but their presence, activities, and experiences are significantly underrepresented in the collections available to the public in repositories like SCHS. Churches, community organizations, black-owned businesses, and individuals have their own historical collections. The catalog will connect those isolated collections and make them visible and available to the public.

The project has received a grant award from the Documentary Heritage Program, an initiative of the New York State Archives. Working with an advisory committee of prominent community members, SCHS will conduct a survey of historical collections and records.

There are a lot of different ways that people record their lives and experiences. We’re looking for church records, organization or business records, diaries, oral histories, correspondence, photographs, videos, music, and art. We’re open to all of sorts of items created by African Americans in Schenectady and connected to the community’s history.

Anyone looking for information on the African American Historical Records Project or wishing to participate in the survey should contact Marietta Carr at the Schenectady County Historical Society at 518-374-0263, option 3, or email her at librarian@schenectadyhistorical.org.

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