Immigrant Oral Histories

Minnesota Immigrant Oral Histories

Oral History interviews with some of Minnesota's newest immigrant groups

Immigrant Oral Histories presents a collection of over 360 oral history interviews conducted between 1967 and 2012 with recent immigrants to Minnesota and their American-born children, including both streaming audio and written transcripts accessible online in digital formats. These interviews are a unique source of contemporary history through the experiences of the newest Americans, in their own words. New oral history projects will continue to be added to this site as they are completed.

Since the mid-20th century Minnesota's population has been augmented by successive waves of immigration, especially from Asia, East Africa, and Latin America. The Minnesota Historical Society has traditionally documented the lives of its residents by collecting objects, but immigrants, especially those fleeing civil war and strife, often arrive with little in the way of possessions. Oral history offers a superb opportunity to document recent immigrants during the period of settlement and acculturation, gathering stories that may otherwise be left out of the historical record.

The oral histories found in Immigrant Oral Histories can also be searched through Collections Online. Oral history interviews on a variety of other topics can be found at Immigrant Oral Histories' companion site, Voices of Minnesota.