Share & preserve your Woodhaven memories
by Ed Wendell
Feb 16, 2016 | 6837 views | 0 0 comments | 51 51 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Examples of the types of photos in the Queens Memory Project: two pictures of Memorial Day parades taken by members of American Legion Post 118.
Examples of the types of photos in the Queens Memory Project: two pictures of Memorial Day parades taken by members of American Legion Post 118.
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Buried in hundreds and hundreds of basements in and around Woodhaven are treasures from our past just waiting to be discovered. With each passing year, more of these wonderful memories are discarded and thrown away, lost forever.

The Queen Library Archives have partnered with Queens College on a the Queens Memory Project, an effort to collect and build an archive of local memories through old photographs, documents, and more.

The Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society is sponsoring two upcoming events with the Queens Memory Project. The first is at 1 p.m. on Wednesday, February 24, at Emanuel United Church of Christ, 91st Avenue and Woodhaven Boulevard. The second is at 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 5, at Neir’s Tavern, 87-48 78th Street.

Representatives from the Queens Memory Project will come to both of these locations and set up a scanner for people to bring in all those wonderful pictures and documents that have been hidden away in drawers and closets and scrapbooks for years.

They will scan the items for you and give them right back – you will keep the originals! They will also give you a copy of your scanned items on a thumb drive, so you’ll walk away from the experience with your memories digitized.

In the end, all of the items from all of the Queens neighborhoods will end up online for everyone to enjoy for many years to come.

We are putting out a call to all Woodhaven families, but especially all of the Woodhaven groups, schools, churches, and organizations. Many of you have years and years’ worth of photos sitting unseen.

Pictures from your events, parties, and parades showing what life was like in Woodhaven years ago. Contact us and we can make special arrangements to bring the Queens Memory Project directly to you so that your memories will be preserved forever.

Maggie Schreiner is an archivist and outreach coordinator for the Queens Memory Project, and she will be overseeing the upcoming memory collection events in Woodhaven.

“We invite people to bring in family photos, old postcards, or other mementos that tell the story of their lives in the borough of Queens,” she explains.

Besides just scanning the items, Schreiner looks to gather some background on them. “We talk to each person about what’s in the photograph, where and when it was taken, and who’s in the photograph,” she said.

And that’s the real special part of this project, not only collecting the photos and documents, but the stories and the memories behind them. All of the photos and documents and information they gather is uploaded and organized on the project’s website, queensmemory.org.

If you go to that site now, there are a few pictures from Woodhaven and we hope that over the next few months we will see that collection grow.

On a final note, if you’ve read this far it’s likely that you enjoy reminiscing about Woodhaven and perhaps even learning more about its history. The Woodhaven Historians meet at 7 p.m. on the first Tuesday of every month at the Avenue Diner, 91-06 Jamaica Avenue, and review old photos and old news articles about Woodhaven.

The meeting is free and everyone is welcome to attend. The next scheduled meeting of the Woodhaven Historians is Tuesday, March 1.

And the Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society is planning three free walking tours of Woodhaven this year, all of them covering a different portion of Woodhaven. The first walking tour – Old Woodhaven Village – is scheduled for noon on Sunday, April 3. We will be meeting at the corner of Woodhaven and Rockaway, by the PC Richards. We will be walking about 3.5 miles and the tour will take just over two hours.

All regular events by the Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society are free and open to the public. For more information, email us at woodhavenhistory@gmail.com (no hyphens).

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