The mission of this book is to record a narrative of the past century as experienced by the Greatest Generation, the changes our country has seen, and the effects of technology (cars, telephones, microwaves, the moon walk, computers) on our society and youth – specifically to bridge that ever widening gap.

— Veronica Kirin

Stories Of Elders began as an attempt to preserve stories from the Greatest Generation, those born during or before 1940.  Said generation was born in what might be called the last of the analogue period of our history, and has seen numerous paradigm shifts in our country, especially in technology – World War I, The Great Depression, World War II, airplanes, cars, the microwave, telephones and television entering every home, the creation of the computer, internet, cell phone, and more.  Unfortunately, we have a tendency to disregard our elders, losing out on the wisdom and narratives that could be shared.  With children today not being taught cursive and how to read an analogue clock, this narrative is ever more important.

In November 2015, I drove over 11,000 miles across the United States following a trail of narratives.  They were recorded both in photograph and audio, to be published here and in a book summarizing how this generation views the changes we’ve experienced.  I’ve chosen to conduct interviews nationwide in order to get the best sampling of what it has been like to view all the changes and advances in technology.

The goal to publish the stories and photographs in a book so they might act as a single voice for the generation.  That is why it is so important I interview people from all states, and from all walks of life.  We learn from stories, not from numbers.  Hopefully this book will add humanity to those history lessons taught in gradeschool.

About the Author

Veronica Kirin is an Anthropologist and Entrepreneur.  She has a passion for telling stories of all kinds, preferring to represent them in their own context and avoiding sensationalizing.

Kirin didn’t have the chance to hear her own grandparents’ stories.  Through community participation or disaster relief work she has had the chance to cherish the stories of other elders.  Her immersion in tech gave her the unique perspective that was the start of this project – people her age and younger don’t seem to connect with their past.  In fact, it’s becoming harder and harder for them to relate to.  They’ve never known anything but a hi-fi lifestyle.

It is Kirin’s Anthropological instinct to study changes in social structure through people.  It was through that instinct that this book was born.