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Dr. Jeanne Nutter wins Lifetime Achievement Award for oral history work

Mar 17, 2016 11:11AM ● Published by J. Chambless

Lifelong Wilmington resident Dr. Jeanne Nutter has won a lifetime achievement award for her work in oral history.

The Forest Pogue Award, given by Oral History in the Mid-Atlantic Region, will be presented at OHMAR’s annual meeting on April 14 at the Hagley Museum and Library Soda House.

 Nutter and Hagley have had a long history of collaboration on African American history, including an exhibition and a documentary films, all based on extensive oral history interviews that she conducted.

“Documenting African American oral histories on film has been my passion for nearly 20 years. I am honored to receive the Pogue Award,” said Nutter, a communication professor at Bloomfield College in Bloomfield, N.J.

“Jeanne Nutter has that rare ability to think big and to also watch every detail,” said Roger Horowitz, director of Hagley’s Center for the History of Business, Technology, and Society. “Working with such a visionary has been one of my greatest professional pleasures at Hagley.”

The public is invited to celebrate this prestigious honor at a lunch at noon on April 14, where she will speak about her life’s work. Lunch tickets can be purchased at https://ohmar.org/2016-conference/registration-form.

In 1998, working with Hagley, Nutter helped create an exhibition and pilot documentary on Pierre S. du Pont and the 89 Delaware schools he built for African Americans. "A Separate Place: The Schools P.S. du Pont Built," a full-length documentary released in 2001, is available on DVD, YouTube, and the Hagley website at http://www.hagley.org/separate-place. A half-hour version of this film, funded by the Delaware Humanities Forum, was distributed to most public schools in Delaware. The film won an Honorable Mention at the 2003 Wilmington Film Festival, Best Documentary at the 2012 Black International Cinema Berlin Festival, and an Award of Merit at the 2016 Impact DOCS.

Nutter has collected more than 50 hours of oral histories of African Americans in Delaware. This has resulted in several short films: "Conversation with Jane E. Mitchell: African American Nurse"; "Conversation with Reverend Maurice J. Moyer: Civil Rights Activist"; "Conversation with Dr. Eugene McGowan: African American School Psychologist and Community Leader"; and "Conversation with Edward Loper: African American Painter." All received support from the Longwood Foundation and the Delaware Humanities Forum and may be seen at http://www.hagley.org/conversations-series.

She was a consultant for the Delaware Historical Society’s Center for African American Heritage, co-producing "Voices of the Elders: Stories of African Americans in Delaware." These six documentaries are a collaboration between the society, WITN22 and the city of Wilmington. She has published two books: an oral history called "Growing Up Black in New Castle County" and "Black America Series: Delaware."

Nutter, an inductee of the Delaware Women’s Hall of Fame and past president of the Delaware chapter of the AARP, has also won the Wilmington NAACP Award in Education, the Phi Delta Kappa Leadership Award, the Delaware State Education Association’s Humanities and Civil Rights Award, and the Metropolitan Wilmington Urban League’s James H. Gilliam, Jr Humanitarian Award.

OHMAR is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion and improvement of oral history and is the regional affiliate of the Oral History Association. Members include public and academic historians, librarians, archivists, teachers, folklorists, and independent researchers.

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