“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”
– Alexander Graham Bell
We are hoping that we are seeing the door that has now opened by developing a plan to provide access to the wealth of information collected by the Creole Heritage Center over the past 13 plus years. This cannot happen without your help!!
The Mission & The Results
The mission of the Creole Heritage Center is to promote, foster and engage in activities and endeavors that relate to Louisiana Creoles and their culture. It serves as an office of support to Louisiana and national Creole communities and organizations, offering advice and assistance in matters that affect Creoles. The CHC also serves as a central clearinghouse and information bank for these communities and for those seeking knowledge, understanding and appreciation of Louisiana Creoles and their culture. Since its inception in 1998, the Creole Heritage Center (CHC) has followed its mission and has met every initial established goal.
Through its endeavors the CHC has achieved an exclusive archive of collected Creole cultural materials currently representing thousands of pages of research data, historical and contemporary images, audio and video tapes from oral interviews, past conferences and celebrations, various publications and developed exhibits. This collection is the only central repository of information of this type in America. It has been used by researchers, educators, and family historians which have ranged from providing discoveries of family connections to noted academic publications.
Proposals and processing methods are being developed to create the first online Creole Archives. This archive would provide not only FREE access to many of the Center's databases of information but would also include a host of materials representing completed projects, conference presentations, Creole Heritage Celebration photographic histories and much more.
Initial actions will include a review of the collection, a plan of action between the partners, and methodology to cover the various mediums (documents, audio, video, etc.) involved. These actions will address necessary criteria for identification and selection, an inventory of the voluminous material to be processed, measures for processing, and adherence to meet national standards. A small portion of the material is either not released by the submitter for public consumption or of a sensitive nature that should have limited access. Therefore, a careful scrutiny of each item by someone knowledgeable of the collection contents, Creole culture and Creole history is a vital necessity.
The best example of what the free access portion of the Creole Archive would look like is actually in Louisiana. It is a part of the Bossier Parish Library Historical Center and can be seen here. Try doing a search for "certificate", "wedding", or "genealogy" and note the results.
How Can YOU Help?
By joining the monthly pledge program you are assuring the development and continued maintenance of the archive of Creole related data that may contain information about YOUR family’s history and lineage. See the “iCreole Archives Pledge"* application form and sign up today!!
*formerely known as the "Just $8/Month Pledge Program"