StoryCorps

Recordings of StoryCorps interviews that were made in Rochester.

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It’s Thursday, the day we hear stories that were recorded here in Rochester last summer by StoryCorps, the national oral history project. Today we hear from Anthony Venturo and his son Michael. Their visit to the mobile recording booth gave Anthony the chance to about what it was like to grow up during World War Two.

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When she was just 15 years old, Lydia Timmons left school to go to work full time, because the economic downturn had severely affected her mother and 9 brothers. That was in 1941. Last summer when the StoryCorps oral history project came to Rochester, Lydia visited the Mobile Recording Booth with her daughter, Mary Graupman, to talk about what life was like in Rochester at the end of the Great Depression.

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Elizabeth Gocker moved to Rochester with her husband Paul in 1946. When the StoryCorps oral history project came to Rochester last summer, she talked with her friend David Sliney about the transition to living in the Flower City.

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Betty Miller just celebrated her one-hundred-first birthday at Valley Manor in Rochester. When the StoryCorps Mobile Recording Booth came to Rochester last summer, Betty shared some of her early memories with her friend Cheryl Smith.

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William Molinere was born and raised in Southern Louisiana, in a little town called Point Barry that has been washed away by hurricanes and floods. He now lives in Canandaigua with his wife Marjorie Torelli. They visited the StoryCorps Mobile Recording Booth last summer, when the oral history project was in residence here in Rochester, to talk about Bill’s experiences growing up in a Native American community in the 1940s.

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Emeterio Otero is the Executive Dean at the Damon City Campus of Monroe Community College. He also identifies himself as First Generation Puerto Rican American… and to his friends and family, he is just “Pete.” When the StoryCorps oral history project came to Rochester last summer, he visited the Mobile Recording Booth with his oldest son Christopher, and his two oldest grandsons Jeremiah and Noah. They talked very frankly about how Pete came of age in Buffalo during the Civil Rights movements. A word of warning… Pete uses some words that may be difficult to listen to, but we felt it was appropriate to include them, in light of the experiences he describes.

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There’s an old saying: the optimist thinks the glass is half full, and the pessimist thinks the glass is half empty, but the engineer knows the glass is too big! Today on StoryCorps Rochester, we hear from retired engineer Leslie Mitchell. He visited the Mobile Recording Booth with his daughter Patrice last summer when the oral history project was in residence here in Rochester.

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Local film maker Mara Ahmed, creator of the documentary “The Muslims I Know,” met and married her husband in 1993. When the StoryCorps oral history project came to Rochester last summer, Mara visited the Mobile Recording Booth with her friend Greta Niu to share the story of how her courtship unfolded 17 years ago…

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StoryCorps, the national oral history project was in Rochester in July, recording our stories as part of the city’s 175th anniversary celebration. This week, Rosemary Maracle tells her daughter Mary Lou Wilson about how a visit to Yugoslavia revitalized her faith in God.

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In June 1972, the remnants of Hurricane Agnes struck the southern tier of New York, and the Chemung River broke through the dam system the next morning. Some parts of Corning were submerged under 18 feet of water; eighteen people were killed and millions of dollars of damage was incurred. Jeanne Corcoran lived in Corning during the flood, and when the StoryCorps MobileBooth came to Rochester last summer, she joined her sister Patricia to talk about her experience during the storm.

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