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Ferguson Library Seeks To Preserve Stamford's Stories Forever

Ferguson Library Digital Librarian Frank Skornia poses for a photo in the library Tuesday afternoon.
Ferguson Library Digital Librarian Frank Skornia poses for a photo in the library Tuesday afternoon. Photo Credit: Jay Polansky

STAMFORD, Conn. — Ferguson Library’s Frank Skornia wants to collect stories and photos from Stamford’s history — every last bit of it. “We want to try to get as much of Stamford as we can,” Skornia said.

Skornia, a digital librarian, said everyone is welcome to participate in several digitizing events at the library’s digital lab that will capture residents’ lives through interviews, diaries, photos, letters, souvenirs and other cultural and historical artifacts.

The stories and photos don't have to be grand or important. “There’s never too little to share — every little bit counts,” he said.

Patrons can come in and make an audio oral history by answering a series of questions. He hopes that those transcripts will ultimately turn into transcripts, which are searchable, unlike audio recordings.

Patrons can also share photographs, which the library plans to digitally archive through open-source software called Omeka , he said.

Have an old VHS tape? “We’ll be able to digitalize that as well," he said.

Skornia said he hopes the project brings Stamford residents together, regardless of how long they have lived in the city.

“I want them to feel a sense of participation, that they are part of Stamford and Stamford history no matter how long they’ve been here,” he said.

In the future, Skornia said he’d like to take the project to different neighborhoods in the city. “They all have their own different flavors and stories to share,” he said.

Skornia plans to get the project in operation over the next couple of weeks and hold a formal public launch event in September.

The library’s initiative comes during the city’s 375th anniversary. For more information on events centered around the anniversary, click here .

To learn more or to make an appointment to “tell your story,” contact Skornia at fskornia@fergusonlibrary.org or 203-351-8220.

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