History On Tap Dec. 2 To Feature Local Oral Histories

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Join the Los Alamos Historical Society for History on Tap on Dec. 2 for an engaging discussion featuring local oral histories recorded by Dave Schiferl. We will meet at 5:30 p.m. at projectY cowork, 150 Central Park Square. All ages are welcome!

What are your stories of Los Alamos? Dave Schiferl will lead a conversation sharing some of his favorite Los Alamos stories collected since 1977. He will also share short clips from some special oral history interviews he has helped to collect. We’ll discuss everything from seeing an x-ray burst (not advisable), a mountain lion at Mountain Elementary, practical jokes, and reports of hauntings at the Laboratory. Bring your own Los Alamos stories to share!

Dave Schiferl has been collecting oral history interviews at Los Alamos since 2003. A series with residents of the Española Valley describing their contributions to the Manhattan Project is posted on the Voices of the Manhattan Project website (Atencio/Schiferl collection). Excerpts of interviews recorded by Schiferl and Cary Skidmore on the 1950s Los Alamos explosives accidents have been used in the recent Los Alamos National Laboratory, La Tierra Quemada: The Burning Ground. And there are many, many more.

Schiferl was a scientist at Los Alamos from 1977 to 2006, working on a wide variety of often-dangerous materials (for example, measurements on hydrogen, fluorine, berkelium, and high explosives at extreme pressures and temperatures) throughout an equally wide variety of Lab sites. He heard fascinating stories and documented many of them in video interviews. Best of all, his technical expertise has allowed him to “pull the thread” from chance comments to elicit and record important new stories.

History on Tap is part of the On Tap Series presented by the Los Alamos Creative District. Each evening begins with an informal 10–15 minute presentation followed by a lively group discussion. Don’t miss this conversation about how stories help us to understand and connect with our past!

More information about History on Tap and other Historical Society programs and events can be found at losalamoshistory.org and by following the Los Alamos History Museum on Facebook.