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Sommers, Laurie Kay, 1955-

 Person

Bio

Folklorist Consultant, Dr. Laurie Sommers (b. 1955) founded the South Georgia Folklife Project in 1996 and served on the faculty of the College of the Arts at Valdosta State University (Music Department) from 1995-2005. The SGFP ended as an official project of Valdosta State in June, 2005, due to budget cuts. Sommers subsequently oversaw the transfer of the collection from the working resource collection of the SGFP to an accessible archival collection within the VSU Archives and Special Collections. Sommers holds a Ph.D. (1986) and MA (1980) in Folklore from Indiana University, with a concentration in ethnomusicology, and has worked as a public sector folklorist since 1982 for organizations such as the Indiana Division of State Parks, the Bureau of Florida Folklife, the Smithsonian Office of Folklife Programs, and the Michigan State University Museum. She is the author of various publications for academic and general audiences and has produced numerous public programs, including concerts, festivals, exhibits, and documentary radio. An experienced fieldworker, she frequently gives workshops on community documentation. Projects and publications from the SGFP period include the Folklife of Wiregrass Georgia traveling exhibition (with funding from the Georgia Humanities Council and NEA), the Okefenokee Music Survey (funded by the Lila Wallace Reader's Digest Community Folklife Program), the Changing Sounds of South Georgia radio series to be broadcast on GPR (funded by an NEA Access grant), Folkwriting: Lessons on Place, Heritage, and Tradition for the Georgia Classroom (with Diane Howard and educators from Cook County Schools, funded by the Georgia Humanities Council), "Let Us Sing": Southeast Georgia Sacred Harp exhibit at the Okefenokee Heritage Center (funded by the Georgia Council for the Arts Folklife Program), Faces in the Piney Woods: Traditions of Turpentining (with funding from the Georgia Folklife Program), "Okefenokee Swamp Folklore" in the New Georgia Encyclopedia, "Continuity and Change in Hoboken (Georgia) Sacred Harp," (Society for American Music Bulletin (Summer/Fall 2000), and the award-winning Florida Music Train, a multicultural educational resource on traditional music in Florida (Florida Folklife Program, Division of Historic Resources, 2003).

Found in 29 Collections and/or Records:

Interview with Joseph F. "Cayoni" Johns, February 28, 2005

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 076_johns-joseph
Collection number: PRJ1014-076
Scope and Contents Oral history interview with Joseph F. Johns "Cayoni," February 28, 2005. Peabody (Mass.). Fieldworker: Laurie Sommers. Audio file digitized from cassette tape. Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections.Fieldworker note: Contacted Joseph Johns by phone through referral from his younger brother, Bobby Johns, initially in reference to turpentine research. Conducted interviews by phone and then received handwritten...
Dates: February 28, 2005

Interview with Lottie Mae Carter, May 10, 2001

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 088_carter-lottie
Collection number: PRJ1014-088
Scope and Contents

Oral history interview with Lottie Mae Carter, May 10, 2001. Hoboken (Ga.). Fieldworker: Laurie Kay Sommers. Audio file digitized from DAT tape. Part of the Sacred Harp Series, South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections.

Growing up in High Bluff church community, singing schools with Martin Dowling at Cascade school, Sacred Harp. Tape not indexed.

Dates: May 10, 2001

Interview with Patricia Wetherington Brockinton, September 4, 2003

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 063_brockinton-patricia
Collection number: PRJ1014-063
Scope and Contents

Oral history interview with Patricia "Pat" Wetherington Brockinton, September 4, 2003. Fargo (Ga.), Dayton Turpentine Camp site. Fieldworker: Laurie Sommers. Audio file digitized from cassette tape. Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections. Topics include Turpentine and Turpentine industry and trade.

Dates: September 4, 2003

Interview with Stetson Kennedy, June 19, 2006

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 083_kennedy-stetson_NoAudio
Collection number: PRJ1014-083
Scope and Contents No audio file available, includes partial transcript.Oral history interview with Stetson Kennedy, June 19, 2006. St. Johns County (Fla.). Fieldworker: Laurie Sommers. No audio cassette or file. Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections.Partial detailed index of interview with Stetson Kennedy at his home in Florida about the background to his turpentine interviews during the WPA and in the early 1950's for...
Dates: June 19, 2006

Interview with the Taylor Brothers, September 12, 1999

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 067_taylor-brothers
Collection number: PRJ1014-067
Scope and Contents Oral history interview with the Taylor Brothers: Clarence Taylor, CJ Taylor, Willie Taylor and Junior Taylor, September 12, 1999. Blackshear (Ga.). Fieldworker: Laurie Sommers. Audio file digitized from DAT tape(s). Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections.Interview with the Taylor Brothers, home of Junior Taylor 9-12-99. Originally taped for the Okefenokee Music Survey, on Junior Taylor’s front porch, various...
Dates: September 12, 1999

Interviews with David I. Lee, February 15, 1997, June 19, 1999, July 15, 2000, November 16, 2002

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 085_lee-david
Collection number: PRJ1014-085
Scope and Contents Oral history interview(s) with David Irwin Lee, Hoboken (Ga.), February 15, 1997; June 19, 1999; July 15, 2000; November 16, 2002. Fieldworker: Laurie Kay Sommers. Audio files digitized from DAT or cassette tape. Part of the Sacred Harp Series: South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections. CAS-1004.06: Interview with David Lee and Clarke Lee, Hoboken...
Dates: February 15, 1997; June 19, 1999; July 15, 2000; November 16, 2002

Interviews with Harley Langdale Jr., April 16, 2002, May 5, 2003, May 16, 2003, June 30, 2003

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 077_langdale-harley
Collection number: PRJ1014-077
Scope and Contents Oral history interviews with Harley Langdale Jr., April 16, 2002; May 5, 2003; May 16, 2003; June 30, 2003. Valdosta (Ga.). Fieldworker: Laurie Kay Sommers. Audio files digitized from DAT tapes. Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections. Oral history interview with Harley Langdale Jr., April 16, 2002. 01:37:06. Harley Langdale, Jr....
Dates: April 16, 2002; May 5, 2003; May 16, 2003; June 30, 2003

Interviews with Tollie Lee, January 31, 1998, May 18, 2005

 File — Bag: \folklife\prj1014\, Folder: 087_lee-tollie
Collection number: PRJ1014-087
Scope and Contents Oral history interviews with Tollie Lee, January 31, 1998 and May 18, 2005. Fieldworker: Laurie Kay Sommers. Audio file digitized from DAT and cassette tape. Part of the South Georgia Folklife Project at Valdosta State University Archives and Special Collections. 3 interviews: DAT-1004.10 Tollie Lee Interview, January 31, 1998. Hilliard (Fla.); Fieldworker: Laurie Kay Sommers. Interview with Tollie...
Dates: January 31, 1998; May 18, 2005