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Lisa’s Public Journal – Week Twelve — Celebrating Collaboration

This last week has been focused on research.  Yes, I’m still learning about my subject.  It’s been challenging for me, putting my notes into a functional read.  However, we now have an agreed visual mechanism we refer to as a “card.”  Each card can support an image, several headers, and several paragraphs of copy.  Example below.  Knowing how the pages will visually organize themselves has given me what I need to organize the copy.  It’s exhilarating.

Site Example

Sample “card” from the City Hall cemetery page.

Yesterday, our weekly team meeting was devoted to recording our first podcast!  It was lovely.  Asma is our lead here and did a great job organizing it and facilitating the conversation. It was a review of our process to date, and she provided some excellent prompts several days before the event so that we could prepare ourselves.

Even though we are currently in the madness of creating, taking this time to reflect on why we chose this topic and what we’ve learned thus far had a calming effect for me.  It was great to hear Bri engaging with their memories about how this project has evolved since their initial proposal.  Asma shared a charming anecdote of how Bret acted as a kind of “sorting hat” to place her in our group when her browser stymied her ability to tap into that initial Zoom culling (and what a fortuitous choice it has turned out to be).  lane explained why he chose his Cemetary (the African burial ground) because he is new to NYC and did not know about it before research began.  Nadia was excited about the project when Bri first proposed it and was particularly inspired by the opportunity to craft a website from scratch.  All of us have grown in our understanding of what “mapping” means, moving from a strictly cartographic comprehension to a deeper appreciation of how sharing histories can change our engagement with “points on a map.”

We have more podcasts planned.  They will continue to document the work and do deeper dives into specific aspects of the project.  These podcasts, coupled with our Making Mapping Cemeteries website, will do a fine job documenting our process.  Given our core audience are scholars and students, mapping our process is as important as mapping our cemeteries.

We should start a podcast