by Chris De
Benedetti, Staff Writer
November 28, 2006
Milestones come and go, but local historians
have been working throughout 2006 —
Fremont's 50th anniversary year — to ensure
the city's history is preserved long after
the party confetti is swept away.
is the Fremont Oral History Project,
featuring hours of videotaped interviews
with 32 residents of all ages. Their
memories of Fremont through the years will
be shown at 7 p.m. Dec. 6 at the Fremont
Main Library. The presentation is titled
"Fremont Stories: Our Family Album."
interviews, which started in January and
continued through the summer, were a
collaborative effort of volunteer residents,
the Fremont Adult School and the Celebrate
Fremont Heritage Team.
20 interviewers participated, said Patricia
Schaffarczyk, the project's coordinator.
citizens interviewing citizens,"
lasting from 60 to 120 minutes were edited
into individual pieces from 7 to 9 minutes
Bringhurst — past president of the Mission
San Jose Chamber of Commerce — conducted the
most interviews, a total of seven, project
this is a long-term gift to the future,"
Bringhurst said. "It's a bit of history that
has been preserved in a modern way."
Schaffarczyk also praised Fremont Adult
School video production officials, such as
Walter Garcia and Duke De Leon, who donated
time and equipment and gave discount prices
for the project's production work.
Heritage Team of Celebrate Fremont, the
all-volunteer community group that has
presented the city's year-round anniversary
celebrations, also contributed to the
initial community outreach found that many
citizens wanted an oral history of the city,
which was known as "Washington Township"
before Fremont was incorporated,
combined efforts have yielded a
three-edition set of DVDs titled "Capturing
the Moment," which divide Fremont's history
into three eras:
Township to 1955.
Nations City: 1977-2006.
Nations City" refers to the diversity of
Fremont, which today boasts nearly 140
different languages spoken. The city always
has been a melting pot, Schaffarczyk said,
noting the large Portuguese, Swiss and
Italian communities that existed before the
recent influx of Asian and Latino
edition ranges between 70 and 90 minutes.
Copies have been donated to the Fremont Main
Library and the Museum of Local History in
Fremont, project organizers said. The
Fremont Stories Project DVD copies may be
purchased at the museum's Web site at
will be available for purchase at the
library on Dec. 6. Prices are $10 for one
DVD, $18 for two and $25 for the whole set,
meantime, the library's presentation will
include interviews taped during Celebrate
Fremont @ the Park, the city's two-day
signature 50th anniversary celebration held
"(Schaffarczyk) put in long hours and
(project organizers) reached into the
community and tried to get a cross-section
of eras and places that people are from,"
Bringhurst said. "It's a treasure for the
community that they produced and I'd like to
see it continue. In a city of 210,000
people, obviously there are a lot of good
stories out there."
Main Library is at 2400 Stevenson Blvd. For
information, call (510) 745-1401.
Fremont Stories Oral History Project
7 p.m. Dec. 6
Fremont Main Library, Fukaya Room, 2400