Smithsonian seeking Sept. 11 stories from public for archival record

The Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History is collecting stories, experiences and memories of the Sept. 11 attacks for an archive as the tragedy nears its 20th anniversary.

Through its digital storytelling initiative “September 11: Stories of a Changed World,” the Smithsonian seeks to preserve the memory of Sept. 11 and its lasting impacts on American and global society for study by future generations.

A form on the museum’s website prompts visitors to share stories or upload media recounting their memories of that day — in New York, D.C. or elsewhere — and how their lives changes in the days, months and years that followed.

“Just as historians today turn to letters, diaries, scrapbooks, and physical objects to understand the past, this collection of digital stories will help future historians and younger generations understand how we navigated that time,” the project’s site says.

Submissions will be reviewed by museum curators for possible inclusion in the project or other Smithsonian archives and collections.

Remembering Sept. 11

Some might be displayed publicly online — NMAH has already published dozens of perspectives on that day including from an airline passenger, a high school student and a small town in the Midwest.

“Taken together, the stories in this archive, some of which will be displayed on this website, will document how everyday people coped, responded, and made history in big ways and small,” the museum said.

Alejandro Alvarez

Alejandro Alvarez joined WTOP as a digital reporter and editor in June 2018. He is a writer and photojournalist focusing on politics, political activism and national affairs, with recent multimedia contributions to Reuters, MSNBC and PBS.

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