The holidays offer us a chance to come together, at a time when community and connection are more important than ever. That’s why we’re giving you the resources to connect in a new way with the people you love through The Great Thanksgiving Listen. By recording your own stories virtually through StoryCorps Connect or in person through the StoryCorps App, you can share your stories with an elder, mentor, friend, or someone you admire, and save them for the generations to come. You can be a part of this year’s nationwide movement to create a personalized piece of oral history of the United States. Here are a few ways you can participate in #TheGreatListen.

 

Record a Loved One’s Stories

“We were a nuisance to the other students. But we had a lot of fun.”

This Thanksgiving, take a moment to record cherished memories like these from the people around you for The Great Thanksgiving Listen. 

If you are unsure of how to start a good conversation, check out our list of Great Questions. You can ask a loved one any of the questions from the list or create your own, using the StoryCorps App or our new program for long-distance interviews, StoryCorps Connect.



Celebrate Voices Across Generations

As a part of The Great Thanksgiving Listen 2021, we are sharing some of our favorite conversations from people of all ages.

Lola’s Work

Kenneth Tan and his mother remember the remarkable life of his grandmother, whom he called Lola. After her father passed away, Lola, the youngest of four siblings, started working to support the family. Through all the hard times and hard work, Lola was a devoted and loving grandmother.
Read the full transcript here.

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“I think it's important to capture those opportunities while you still have them in your grasp.”
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A Century-Old Family Reunion Interrupted By A Pandemic

For nearly a century, the Quanders has been gathering for a family reunion each year. In the face of COVID-19, they must reconsider how to keep their history alive.
Read the full transcript here.

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"I applied to NASA four times."
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When You Have Problems, Go To The Clouds

When Wally Funk was twenty, she got the chance to prove that females could be astronauts. While the program got shut down, she didn’t let this stop her. More than half a century later, she joined the crew on the New Shepard rocket, which launched on July 20th, 2021.
Read the full transcript here.

The Little Things

For the past eight years, Herman Travis has pushed a heavy shopping cart full of groceries to bring to elderly neighbors in a low-income housing complex. He was joined at StoryCorps by one the residents he delivers to, Robert Cochran, to talk about the impact of that gesture.
Read the full transcript here.

Double Major

As a student at Bowdoin College, Wil Smith had an unique roommate, his infant daughter Olivia. By graduation, his entire school was cheering them both across the stage.
Read the full transcript here.


Bring StoryCorps to Your Classroom

The Great Thanksgiving Listen is the perfect opportunity for students to practice their listening and storytelling skills by honoring someone in their life with an interview. We invite educators to use our toolkit to bring StoryCorps into the classroom this November.


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"I was debating whether I would say something at dinner..."
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I Love Leslye

Leslye Huff and her partner, Mary Ostendorf, met in 1983. Mary felt less comfortable with public displays of affection and had not told many people in her life about her sexuality, including her family. They talk about a difficult Thanksgiving, and all the ways that love can heal.
Read the full transcript here.

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“As soon as I landed, I was home.”
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“I Have These Dreams Where I Go Back”: Dad and Daughter Mourn a Syria They Once Knew

Ten years after the start of the Syrian civil war, father and daughter Walid and Magda Sakaan remember their lives in Syria.
Read the full transcript here.

From Beets to Brilliance: A Grandmother’s Wisdom Lives On

After Chloe Longfellow’s father died, her mother, Dorsey Romano, was forced to take on a variety of jobs, some of which required her to work nights. While her mother was away, Chloe spent time at her grandparents’ home and became close to her grandmother, Doris Louise Rolison.
Read the full transcript here.

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"Why are you asking these questions?"
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The Questions They’ve Always Wanted To Ask

In an interview with their father, Isaiah and Josiah Fredericks ask him about the hardest thing about being a dad, as well as why they can’t have their own rollercoaster.
Read the full transcript here.

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“...everything was dead. Like if I had landed on the moon.”
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In the US 50 Years, a Man Reflects on His Arrival from Honduras

Over 50 years ago, Roy Daley arrived in America, although it wasn’t quite what he was expecting. At StoryCorps he remembers his first Thanksgiving in the United States.
Read the full transcript here.

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