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Unique to oral histories, stories told from memory are never told the same way twice (Portelli). For these narrators, being asked about their literacy background was a question never asked of them before, so their responses were genuine memories of experiences, untainted by expectations of the answer. The removed pressure allowed each person to recall important ways in which literacy has presented itself across generations, religious congregations, and within community populations. Similar institutional resources and core values connect literate proficiency, proving evident when listening to stories of various members of the black church community in Columbus. Not uncommon when analyzing a small amount of personal narratives that have been gathered based on already interconnected perspectives (Maynes). Such comparable qualities about personal history ensure that there is another common thread lining all the stories: education.

The black church, being the original commonality for each story presented, shared its taproot with education in many forms as they slowly emerged across the oral histories collected this autumn. In contrast to this similarity, each narrative from the Digital Archive of Literacy Narratives comes from people of varying gender, socioeconomic background, and generation. When considering these differences, they strengthen the tie that educational presence holds in each. The theme of education, including but not limited to Sunday school, song and reading, is often implied when discussing literacy in general. Portrayed in different lights across narrators, education in this exhibit is broadened into five collaborative interpretations: volunteering, teaching, music, motivation and community. The collection consisting of Columbus resident Clarissa Epps', "Service Through Literacy", third generation teacher Flora Henderson's, "Family Legacy of Educators", choral director Caprica Washington's ,"Together We Build Literacy", new, Lincoln Park Baptist Church member Charles McGregory's, "How Literacy Helped Me Understand the Bible", and community speaker Dorothy Mitchell's, "It Takes A Village to Raise a Child". Respectfully, each details aspects of their lives most influential to their literacy experiences. Epps discusses volunteer work as a literacy tutor while Flora Henderson explores her rich family history as teachers and how that has shaped her literate life. Washington exemplifies visual and verbal queues in discussing her literacy involvement and education with music. Mr. McGregory, most different in his story, explains how education for him was an outlet and becoming literate, a process. Dorothy was able to explain the value of community and congregation in education and how, jointly, they effect literacy.

For the African-American community in large cities, there are often difficulties in receiving an ample education. Having to experience different racial hurdles, sitting in or leading a classroom comes with some unique challenges. For example, Charles' adolescent career was spent split between the hardships of a broken home and literature. In comparison, the classroom for some was a second home. During a time of civil struggle and even more racial inequality, Mrs. Henderson, the daughter of a teacher, was taught to value a desk and a good book more than anything. These juxtaposing concepts and literacy applications are representative opposites in our collection of narratives sharing education manifestation from the DALN. Interestingly enough, interviewed as members of black church communities, each interviewee incorporated external aspects of their literacy learning experiences. Beginning at their religious upbringings, every individual has since formed careers, relationships or hobbies from their learned literacy. They all attribute some of their skill to their childhood congregations or Sunday school classes, but again, it is not only the faithful elements of these narratives that make them cohesive. It is the application of their skills to a different cause. Using their childhood and church involvements Caprica teaches children biblical and musical application of words and Ms. Epps has made a career out of interpreting words for her community by working in public office. All of the narratives individually exemplify diversity of literacy and how education, teaching and learning, are present in all five's daily lives.