The development of a popular history is an ideal means to capture and convey the past of a site or organization to its constituents, employees, and the public. New South Associates has prepared a number of popular histories that capture and present the historical lineages, personages, and events that make a particular installation or an agency special. These include histories of associations and organizations as well as histories of sites and installations. With heavy use of graphic images and design, our popular histories visually present the history, landscapes, and people that form the history of a site or association.
Our work with popular history often encompasses oral history interviews with current and former staff and employees of a site or organization. These personal experiences and anecdotes are an excellent source for conveying a sense of what life and work was like at a facility. Period newspapers, magazines, and materials such as security badges, can be used to further convey a sense of time and place.
New South Associates’ landmark publication, the Savannah River Site at Fifty, is an example of a popular history writ large. Prepared for the 50th anniversary of the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site (SRS), and written by New South Associates President Mary Beth Reed and her colleagues, this 700+ page illustrated book conveys the world events leading up to the construction of SRS, site selection, the relocation of local communities, construction, operations, and management. Published by the Government Printing Office, this book was the recipient of the 2002 American Cultural Resource Association Quality Product Award. In addition to the book, a companion brochure was prepared, which was titled Patriots of the Atomic Age.