Here are some links to things The Endangered History Project has done.

Until we can find a web guru at a reasonable cost, the fruits of the labor are hanging on various trees. Here are links to some of the things the folks working with The Endangered History Project have been doing:

The Oral History Institute — this is a blog that Don Ray put together when he and others were planning what came to be The Endangered History Project.

The Endangered History Project facebook page. This pretty much sums it up.

4MyHistory A place to see and read some other stories from The Endangered History Project that are historical in nature.

Gloria and Snicks Fall in Love. In April, 2012, Don Ray and Neal Velgos were out ‘sploring L.A. when they encountered a most beautiful and loving couple, Gloria and Myron (Snicks) Snyder. They were sitting, enjoying the afternoon shade, outside their charming little cottage on one of the hills in the Silverlake district. It didn’t take long for Don Ray to realize that these were perfect candidates for oral history video interviews. Don Ray interviewed them both twice and then helped Snicks by digitizing and transcribing audiotapes he had created some 30 year earlier — audiotapes upon which he had dictated his entire life story. He had also written out other parts of his life story. All of these media elements were to come together in book form. Snicks wanted to give the books to his seven grown children. There was a problem with the binder’s schedule, so he agreed to allow The Endangered History Project to create a video DVD that he could give to his kids at Christmas. Technical problems delayed the output of the DVDs until the day after Christmas. Snicks, Gloria and one of their daughters came to Burbank for a screening of “Gloria and Snicks Fall in Love.” Eight days later, Snicks died — just a week or so shy of his 93rd birthday. We’ll complete the book as promised. We’re hoping to get some financial help upgrading the video editing computer that caused the delay and still plagues the operation today.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Doris at the Wheel: And Oral History Presentation. In 1996, a year before Doris (Tidrick) Quinn died, David Ritchie conducted an oral history interview of Don Ray’s mother. Don Ray shot the interview, but listened to Latin Music though his headphones so that his mother would know that he was not listening. The plan worked. His mother told stories to David that she’d never told to family members. A year after she passed away, Don Ray added photos, film footage, music and video and created a video presentation for his sister and other family members and friends. In 2013, Don Ray digitized the old video, color corrected it and added additional media to the mix. Today, David Ritchie is a member of the Board of Directors of The Endangered History Project, Inc.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Spanish Kitchen exterior

“The Mystery of the Spanish Kitchen.” It’s the story of one reporter’s obsession with learning what was really behind the mysteSpanish Kitchen Interior001ry of a once-popular West Hollywood restaurant that was frozen in time. It’s owner simply closed the doors one day and never reopened for business. She left the condiments on the tables and a pot of enchilada sauce on the stove. She retreated upstairs to her apartment and, legend has it, she never stepped outside again. There had to be more to the story. This is a detailed account of how the reporter followed one lead after another until he found himself in the Arizona desert — minutes away from talking to someone who might know the secret.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

When Joe Met Louise. This is a most beautiful work-in-progress video and print project that could use your support. In the early 1990s, former child actor (“Heidi,” “Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,” “Our Gang”) actor and then noted news photographer Delmar Watson invited Don Ray and Gil Haimson to conduct oral history interviews of his sister, Louise, and her husband, Joe Roberts. Delmar wanted us to capture the story of the life-long romance of this delightful couple — especially the story of the love letters they sent to each other when Joe went off to fight in World War II. Delmar knew that they had saved most of the letters, but had not looked at them since the war ended. Delmar was right about the story — it’s one of the most beautiful romance stories most of had ever heard. Life got in the way of completing the project back then. Delmar passed away, but Joe and Louise are still in love. They’re both 93. They’ve been married more than 70 years. A while back, Joe was able to deliver to Don Ray those beautiful love letters. He’s still scanning them and putting them in sheet protectors. Delmar’s widow and his nephew have inherited the project that Delmar wanted us to complete. We’re hoping that contributions, donations and even some volunteer help will move this beautiful book and video projected toward completion. This video is a sample of what Don Ray and Gil Haimson shot two decades ago.

The good life, according to Scotty. This impromptu example of a video oral history gives a glimpse into the way Scotty Campbell chose to spend his later years. He painted stuff. He painted everything in his world — his sidewalk, his plants, his windows, his rocks, his car’s bumper and even his shoes and hat. He’s gone now. His library burned down. But this video enables people to know him, long after his life ended. Special thanks go out to Joseph P. Veraldi, Jr., for his help in producing this.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

The Victim Whom “Suicide Bridge” Spared is a story that Don Ray and Neal Velgos wrote for the Los Angeles Times in 1984 following one of their early ‘splorations in and around Los Angeles. They decided one Suicide Bridge009-01Sunday afternoon that they wanted to know more about the history of the Colorado Street Bridge, which had, long ago, taken on the nickname of “Suicide Bridge,” because of all of the people during the Great Depression who had jumped from the bridge to their death.

Neal and Don discovered that the last victim to commit suicide there was a young mother who took her three-year-old daughter out onto the bridge, threw the little girl over the railing and then jumped to her death. However, it turns out, the little girl had survived. Don and Neal tracked her down some 50 years later and wrote about her. That little girl is about to turn 80 years old and is living in another state. The board members of The Endangered History Project would like for the oral history team to re-interview her this years on video and create a short film. You can help make that happen.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Delmar Watson tell stories of the pranks in the good old days. Being a news photographer in the 1940s, ’50 and ’60s was a time when “scoops” had meanings and the news photographers had fun. Delmar Watson was one of them, along with his five brother and his uncle, pioneer news photographer George R. Watson. A few years before Delmar passed away, he agreed to tell some tales about the photographers’ antics he remembers.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Crossing the line: How one Mexican teenager made it across the border. Even an oral history interview in another language can translate into a story worthy of historical preservation. That was the case with this young man who took the high road, even though it was more expensive and much more dangerous.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

A Cat named Room 8. In 1952, a grey cat wandered into Room 8 of the Elysian Heights Elementary School in Los Angeles. He sat down in the window sill and decided to make Room 8 his home for the rest of his life until he died in 1968. Don Ray, currently the CEO of The Endangered History Project, assisted the producer of a nationally syndicated animal program in shooting this piece that aired back in the 1980s. Today, volunteers are working to update this remarkable story for a new audience. Click on the title above to watch that video.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Catalina loves Morro captures the hilarious and heart-warming story that a woman told in 1990 about her first encounter with the man she would eventually marry. Two decades later, now in her 90s, she shows that she still feels the passion for her late husband.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Chuck Walton’s Hod Dog Caper. Don Ray first met Chuck Walton while researching a story about homeless people in the high desert in 2000. Chuck Walton was career scam operator and vagabond. He sat down and told much of his life story. This one is about how he ripped off the owner of the hot dog stand Chuck worked at in St. Louis. Chuck Walton has passed on, but not before showing us that unscrupulous folks are always ready to take advantage of any situation.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

Mary Carter — My Fair Lady. At the time of this video, Mary Carter was 98 years old and working at the rock shop at the Los Angeles County Fair. It wasn’t an official, long-format oral history, but even a glimpse of a special person is worth the time.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

“Horse whisperer” and the blind “Lady.” Long before a movie made “horse whisperer” a household expression, Kermit Samples was doing his gentle magic on horses that others couldn’t handle. Then he encountered a blind mare named “Lady Moonlighter.” The two bonded like laminate. In this sample of what will be a short documentary, Kermit shows his skills and then introduces us to the horse that was blind — a horse Kermit decided could lead the regular life of a sighted horse.

If you like this story, please click here and consider supporting The Endangered History Project.

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