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‘Underwater:’ Student podcast chronicles historic 2016 floods

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History students at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette have created a podcast series that delves into historic flooding that inundated the state in August 2016.

The flood affected 56 of 64 parishes in Louisiana. Thirteen people died.

In south Louisiana, more than 30 inches of rain fell during an eight-day period. The storms caused more than $8.7 billion in damage across 20 of the hardest-hit parishes.

“UNDERWATER: Memories of the 2016 Floods” is based on dozens of interviews conducted last year by faculty and student researchers. The series will examine topics such as the impact of the flood and community responses.

Interviews were conducted during “History Harvests” organized by UL Lafayette public history students. The harvests cover a range of topics, and are designed to contribute to a broader understanding of the region’s past.

The inaugural flood podcast will focus on Lafayette. Future installments will feature communities such as Baton Rouge and Denham Springs.

History majors Zach Henry and Mark Mallory created the podcasts. The undergraduate researchers were led by Dr. Liz Skilton, an assistant professor of history.

The work is part of the Recent Louisiana Disasters Oral History Project. The Department of History, Geography and Philosophy project is funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the University’s Undergraduate Research Council.

Additional “History Harvests” have been scheduled to gather more information about the 2016 floods.

Events will be held: Friday, Aug. 10, in Scott, La.; Saturday, Aug. 11, in Youngsville, La.; and Sunday, Aug. 12 and Saturday, Sept. 22, in Lafayette.

The first flood podcast can be heard on the project’s webpage.

Learn more about upcoming “History Harvests” on the history department's Facebook page

For more information, contact Skilton at skilton@louisiana.edu

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