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Todd Family Oral History Award

Veterans Oral History Project

This prize is awarded to two Oklahoma National History Day senior division entries with the best oral history interview with a US veteran. Oral histories must be conducted by students. Students will submit their recorded interview to the Oklahoma Historical Society (OHS), and all recordings will be archived by the OHS.

Awards
Student awards are $1,000 for first place and $500 for second place.

Entry Period and Notification of Winners
The entry period closes on April 15. Winners will be announced at the OkNHD Awards Ceremony in early May at the Oklahoma History Center.

Project Requirements
Interviews must be filmed and be a minimum of thirty minutes in length and must be on CD or DVD. An entry form and release form must be included with each submission on CD or DVD.

Entry Form (PDF) - to be completed by student
Release Form (PDF) - to be completed by interviewee and student

Preparing for an Interview

Tips for Conducting an Oral History

  • Schedule the oral history in advance and make sure the person knows they will be recorded/filmed
  • Arrive prepared and bring:
    • Writing utensils
    • Paper
    • Recording equipment
  • Record the date and location of the interview
  • Record the name of the interviewer and interviewee
  • Ask questions to get the interview started
    • Do not worry if the interviewee strays from the question; some of the best stories come from the detours
    • Do not push for answers
    • Be aware of questions that may make your interviewee uncomfortable, and ask if they want to continue with the question
  • Try asking for dates in relation to significant events in the person’s life
  • Keep sessions between 30 minutes and two hours, and be aware that your interviewee may get tired

Choosing Your Questions
The PDFs below include a sample list of questions for interviewing a veteran. Students should keep in mind that each interview will be different and adjust the questions as needed.