Wish NEH a Happy Anniversary on September 29th


Be Part of a National Celebration
Wish NEH a Happy Anniversary at 12:00 PM CDT
on Social Media

September 29th marks the 50th anniversary of the National Endowment for the Humanities. NEH was created by the signing of the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act on September 29, 1965.

On Tuesday, September 29, there will be a virtual flashmob to wish NEH “Happy 50th Anniversary” on Twitter. Don’t have a Twitter account? You can also share on Facebook and Instagram. Here’s how you can participate:

On September 29 at 12:00 PM CDT/1:00 PM EDT, the Kansas Humanities Council is encouraging everyone to:

  1. Print out this template that reads “I love the humanities because…”
  2. Fill in why you love the humanities (in dark marker).
  3. Take a photo holding the sign.
  4. Post the photo on your Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram page using the hashtag #NEHturns50 and tag @NEHgov.

Here are some sample photos for inspiration:

example1 example2

Don’t have access to a printer?

  • Post on your Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram page wishing @NEHgov a happy 50th anniversary and use #NEHturns50.
  • Use this draft tweet: Happy anniversary @NEHgov, I love the humanities #NEHturns50

Don’t have a social media account?
Send your image to info(at)kansashumanities.org by 11:00 AM CDT on September 29th and KHC will schedule your tweet for you.

Click here for full instructions from NEH, including a place to sign up for a reminder email.

Please feel free to share this with others in your community who may want to participate.

Thank you and Happy Anniversary NEH!



Call for Topeka StoryCorps Participants

School Segregation BannedDeadline to participate: April 25, 2014
Contact: Donna Rae Pearson, Local History Librarian at Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library, (785) 580-4510.

What was your graduation day like? KHC, the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site, and the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library are seeking Topeka residents for participation in the Brown v. Board StoryCorps national listening project in commemoration of the Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision. Of particular interest are parents, grandparents, or other relatives of students graduating this May who have stories to share of their school days and graduation day before, during, or after the Brown v. Board of Education decision. Spaces are limited. Contact Donna Rae Pearson at (785) 580-4510 by April 25, 2014, for more information on how to participate.

On May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its first Brown v. Board of Education ruling declaring public school segregation unconstitutional. This year, May 17 coincides with graduation day in Topeka. As Topeka students prepare to don their caps and gowns, imagine the difference between graduation day this year and the one 60 years ago. The StoryCorps project will capture Topekans’ firsthand experiences and reflections about life in school before and after desegregation.

StoryCorps is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide people of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to record, share, and preserve the stories of our lives. Interviews will be conducted at the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library and Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site May 1-3, 2014. The interviews will be archived locally and at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

The Brown v. Board StoryCorps project is a collaboration between Brown v. Board of Education, the Kansas Humanities Council, and the Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library. The project is made possible with support from the Capitol Federal Foundation, Fairlawn Plaza, Security Benefit, the Greater Topeka Fund of the Topeka Community Foundation, and Westar Energy.

Image: Front page of The Topeka State Journal, May 17, 1954. Image courtesy of the Kansas Historical Society. 

A New Thanksgiving Tradition

The day after Thanksgiving is known for Black Friday sales and turkey leftovers. Two organizations want to add a third item to the Thanksgiving Friday schedule: oral histories. Both the Kansas African American Affairs Commission and the StoryCorps national listening projects want to help you preserve your family stories on November 29th.

kaaac_flyerA New Black Friday

The Kansas African American Affairs Commission (KAAAC) is sponsoring “A New Black Friday,” a Kansas African American oral history project November 27 – December 1, 2013. According to the KAAAC brochure:

 The A New Black Friday project is a Kansas African American oral history project developed to provide a meaningful alternative to the activity in which society engages the day after Thanksgiving holiday. While much is known about the founding of our great State, little is known about the African American contribution. Every family has “family stories” that have been passed down from generation to generation and it is through these stories that we hope to tell ours.

Click here for more information, including a brochure with step-by-step instructions.

National Day of Listening

For ten years, the StoryCorps national listening project has been preserving the stories of everyday people. On November 29, StoryCorps is sponsoring the National Day of Listening, an opportunity to record interviews with loved ones on the StoryCorps website. Watch the 1 minute, 30 second video for more information:

Click here for information on how you can participate in the National Day of Listening.

Are you a nonprofit organization for with an idea for a community oral history project? Click here for information about KHC Heritage grants.