Saturday, October 14, 2023 in the Adirondack Almanack by !

North Elba, NY – “Freedom Story Project” an endeavor of John Brown Lives! and OurStoryBridge Inc., recently achieved the milestone of collecting 100 stories from storytellers across the nation. Launched in 2022, Freedom Story Project collects and broadcasts three- to five-minute audio stories and related photographs online, centering around themes of freedom and justice, human and civil rights, activism and engagement, at local, national and international levels. John Brown Lives! seeks to inspire younger generations to tell their stories and connect to their communities and these issues, including through especially powerful personal narratives by elders who share their experiences. Freedom Story Project uses the OurStoryBridge methodology, making stories easily accessible and shareable.

Initially funded from an AARP Community Challenge grant, Freedom Story Project has collected 100 personal narratives (64% collected from storytellers 50 and older) regarding social justice, activism, and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI); created a pop-up physical space for storytelling at the John Brown Farm State Historic Site in North Elba, New York; launched an online platform at; collected 20 stories during the first and second annual Adirondack Family Book Festivals and 14 during recent John Brown Days; and published four Freedom Story Project podcast episodes threading together common themes of narratives.

Freedom Story Project features the voices and experiences of national and locally known figures, such as musician Tom Morello, Native American author Joseph Bruchac, criminal justice activist
Dr. Alice P. Green and the late author Russell Banks, who helped found John Brown Lives!. Officials at John Brown Lives! and OurStoryBridge Inc. express their gratitude to the storytellers for sharing their experiences.

Martha Swan, Executive Director of John Brown Lives! said, “One hundred stories from young and old exemplify and support the mission of John Brown Lives! as they inspire all generations to work toward making the world a better and more equitable place.”

Jery Y. Huntley, Founder and President of OurStoryBridge Inc. which has collected the stories, said, “Of the almost 1,000 stories collected across the country by OurStoryBridge projects, Freedom Story project stories are the most impactful of all and often tear at your heart strings inspiring you to create positive change in these difficult times.”

Those who want to share their stories can email