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Audio and Oral History Archive

The archive contains recordings on a variety of formats including reel tapes, cassettes, phonograph records, and wire recordings. The content of these recordings includes radio broadcasts, music, political speeches, and legislative sessions. There is also a variety of American Indian and folklife recordings within the collections. Most of the audio collections remain unprocessed, but many of the materials may be found in the online catalog.

Search the online catalog

Listen Online

Listen on Youtube

Selected audio recordings from the OHS Research Center collection are now online. Listen to oral histories, American Indian materials, audio from the Martha Blaine collection, and more.

Oral Histories

The oral histories include approximately three thousand recorded interviews pertaining to a wide range of topics. The interviews date from 1956 to the present. Most of the collection dates from the early 1980s to the late 1990s. The most common formats are cassette, VHS, DVD, and digital files. Recordings in this collection range from twenty minutes to eight hours, with the average being one to two hours.

Saturday access to oral histories must be requested by 3 pm on Friday. Only select interviews have transcripts; these are available in the online catalog.

The Michael J. Hightower Oral History Collection

This collection includes audio tapes, transcriptions, and notes from the Oklahoma Bank and Commerce History Project. Michael J. Hightower has authored two books on the history of banking in Oklahoma. While researching for the books, he conducted numerous oral histories and has donated these materials to the OHS Research Center.
Read interview transcripts and find out more.

St. Luke's Methodist Church Collection—A Case Study in Palmitic Acid

While processing the St. Luke's Methodist Church Collection, OHS staff found audio recordings damaged by palmitic acid.
Read a case study of this collection.

Orders and Fees

Item Price
Research Fee $25
CD or DVD $25

The audio research fee is $25. Please include the research fee with your order. Note: research fees do not apply when the accession number is included with the order.

Order online You may also order by mail using the printable order form.

Details on commercial use.

Contact the Audio and Oral History Archive

Diane Wasser
dwasser@okhistory.org or japryse@okhistory.org.


Audio collection coverage is intended to be broad, general, and balanced, providing an extensive range of genres representing history related to Oklahoma. Please contact us before bringing materials to the Research Center. Our staff will need to assess your donation to determine if it is possible to accept the materials.

Useful Links


Do you have your own audio collection? The Oklahoma Historical Society has some tips for preserving these items, including:

  1. Give your collections a safe environment:
    a. Maintain moderate and stable temperatures for all audio formats. Avoid storing in automobiles, attics, bathrooms, laundry rooms or any other location that could cause damage by humidity or heat.
    b. Avoid storing collections in direct sunlight or fluorescent lighting; both will cause fading and damage.
  2. Store your collections in archival enclosures, folders, boxes, and other containers that will extend their life and protect them from dust and pollution.
  3. Avoid touching the surface of all media if possible. For even better protection, use white cotton gloves when handling.
For more information visit the Library of Congress collections care page www.loc.gov/preservation/care/record.html or the Oklahoma Cultural Heritage Trust http://www.culturalheritagetrust.org