CHESTER DIGITAL STORIES (CDS) is a freely available resource that seeks to collect, preserve and make accessible the digital stories of residents of Chester, Pennsylvania.

Our Purpose:

Chester Digital Stories (CDS) is digital storytelling resource that combines the art of storytelling with state-of-the art technologies of collection, preservation and public access. CDS provides a venue for continued conversation among residents and the general public around a wide range of topics and issues relevant to the city of Chester, Pennsylvania. As a sustainable community-based asset, CDS content reflects the diverse voices and experiences of Chester residents and challenges longstanding efforts of mainstream institutions to silence and ignore them. CDS is committed to local control and ownership, preservation, and the global sharing of its digital story collection.

CDS was founded in 2020 and is supported by Chester Made, a community-based initiative of the Pennsylvania Humanities Council (PHC).

Why Digital Stories?

Today’s digital technologies allow communities to record and save their stories and make them accessible to the public. Chester stories can be accessed remotely, the quality of the digital recordings is improving constantly, and this Omeka site allows full-text searching and cross-collection indexing. But we are not simply interested in saving stories. Our objective is to make full use of digital storytelling to improve the ways in which information about Chester is used for teaching and learning, research and community activism. We see our online collection of digital stories as a site to assist social transformation, rectify gaps in historical coverage and proactively document the present day.