About Us

Preserving collective history

Our mission and history

What began as an idea in 2008 to acknowledge and popularize the people’s history of Partition has been accomplished through the founding and building of The 1947 Partition Archive. Today, over 11,500 memories of Partition witnesses have been preserved. As a result, unlike in 2008, Partition is no longer a forgotten memory today, and witnesses’ plight is being heard the world over. Through the sharing of thousands of witness accounts millions of times over the last decade via social media and other digital means, the “people’s history” of Partition has been established and is now a growing and active area of research as well as new documentation efforts.  We are proud to have accomplished our first goal of popularizing recognition for this important chapter in our global history.  We look forward to working with you in ensuring that the lessons of Partition are taught in textbooks around the world, so that we may avoid repeating history.

Exhibitions & Events

Forgotten frontlines, berkeley, california

Coming this fall to Berkeley in a collaboration between The 1947 Partition Archive and Pacific Attrocities Education – Forgotten

August 31, 2024

Forgotten frontlines, san jose, california

Coming this fall to San Jose in a collaboration between The 1947 Partition Archive and Pacific Attrocities Education – Forgotten

August 17, 2024

10,000 memories, london

A panel discussion and student event commemorating the release of 10,000 Memories, the book.

April 26, 2023

Our Team

Board of Directors

Advisory Council

Our advisory councils are project-based for focused support. Advisers come from diverse backgrounds and are lending their knowledge, time and expertise in helping towards two aspects of our mission

Founding donors

We are immensely grateful to our founding donors for laying the foundation for this people-powered oral history archive.During these initial stages of our growth, we seek to work closely with Founding Donors who are not only recognized for life, but have the opportunity to increase their impact and legacy after the initial contribution period is over.

It costs $200 to record, archive, preserve, and share one story.

Our Partners

The 1947 Partition Archive is funded by thousands of community members like you, from across the world, who range in age and have contributed gifts of all sizes. As the archive has grown, it has garnered support from institutional donors as well. Major donors include (in alphabetical order)

Podcasts

The ethics and philosophy of teaching violent histories

Moving beyond Partition: History & Memory | Amritjit Singh

Meeting & Forgiving those who killed my family | SALMAN RASHID

Exploring Identity, Nationalism and Culture in post-Partition South Asia

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FAQs

The 1947 Partition Archive (or, “The Archive”) is a collection of life stories recorded on video (and sometimes audio) from those who witnessed the 1947 Partition of South Asian States. The Archive is built for people, by people.  The stories are gathered and shared by anyone who wishes to share. You too can record and submit a story.  Click here to learn more about us.

There are several ways to get involved. You can:

  • Interview a Partition witness. Learn how here.
  • Share your own story if you have one, here.
  • Make a donation here
  • Join us as a volunteer. Apply here.
  • Learn while giving back as an Intern. Apply here.

The Archive is funded by individual people from around the world through cash donations as well as pro-bono and volunteer services. The Archive has also received grants from a number of Foundations, and invites more partnerships with art and culture foundations and corporate sponsors. 

Researchers interested in doing field work involving the recording of Partition witness oral histories are encouraged to apply to our Story Scholars program. Story Scholars are granted a stipend from The Archive to collect stories within a certain geographical location, not already being served by another Story Scholar. Learn more and see the application here.

We conduct our interviews wherever the interviewee is most comfortable, often in their own homes. Learn more here.

The interviews can be conducted in any language, according to the interviewee’s preference. Any language they choose is acceptable.

You do not need any special knowledge to share your story, only an eyewitness account of your personal experience. Learn more here.

Anyone anywhere is encouraged to join us in collecting stories and building The Archive, as a Citizen Historian.  We only require that you take a brief online course before you collect and submit stories.  Sign up here

Presently raw, unprocessed footage is available for access to professional researchers and their students, for educational purposes, as it is deposited in The Archive. Apply for access here.

Presently, our collected works are being made available in limited capacity via our homepage. A random selection of story summaries with photographs are also made available through our Facebook page.  The full works will be made available on a future date (approximately 2016) for educational purposes to academic researchers, students and the public. Stay tuned for more information or contact us to learn more. Subscribe to our newsletter to keep up with future developments. 

Interviewees and their families may request copies of their interview DVD’s here.

We have created a comprehensive list of books and other learning resources on Partition available on the Partition Library portion of our website. Click to view.

Two quick online resources include:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Partition_of_India
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jGiTaQ60Je0

You can click here to sign up for an interview.

You may request a DVD online by 1) filling out a simple form here and 2) making the donation suggested on the form online.  We request a donation because it takes a lot of resources and raw materials to bring you the DVD.  In the past, volunteers have covered these costs.  However, with so many DVD requests, the costs began to overwhelm the volunteers.  Hence we now ask those requesting DVD’s to provide a small donation to cover the material and equipment cost for creating high quality DVD’s of their interviews.  Please be mindful of the volunteer effort when requesting your DVD.  For your information, please see the numbers below.

Here is what it takes to make your DVD:

  • Human Time Cost: The movie file editing, processing and conversion times for HD format movies, on our current processors, are approximately 50 to 60 hours.  
  • Material Cost:  The donated computers used for conversion, the blank DVD’s, the packaging and the mailing costs.

Yes, you can learn to conduct an interview by signing up here

You may help them sign up using the form listed here, or conduct the interview yourself. Because we are currently developing a broader geographic outreach, the best way to archive a story is to record it yourself!

The Archive does consider other submissions on a case-by-case basis.  Please contact us.

All stories submitted to The 1947 Partition Archive by Citizen Historians are currently hosted and preserved in a digital cloud.  Hence there is no particular physical location and no particular city or country that plays host to the stories.  An international cloud storage service provides hosting for the stories.

In order to bring the stories to the public, we must build the infrastructure carefully.  Presently, numerous volunteers are researching and developing exactly this.  As with anything however, this will require more time and resources, which we are currently gathering.  We expect this process will take about three years.  You can help contribute to this effort by making a donation, or volunteering.

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