Extraordinary Stories of Ordinary Life
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Featured story: A Mother, Then and Now

In our latest podcast, we catch up with Melissa, who recorded a diary about being a teen mom in 1996.

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Featured story: Radio Diaries Turns 20!

20 years ago, NPR’s All Things Considered began running my occasional series, Teenage Diaries… which then grew up to become …

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Featured story: The Man in the Zoo

On September 8th, 1906, New York’s Bronx Zoo unveiled a new exhibit that would attract thousands of visitors. Inside a cage, in the monkey house, was a man.

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Diaries We give people tape recorders and help them document their own lives in their own words

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The Last Place: Diary of a Retirement Home

A group of residents of The Presbyterian Home use tape recorders to document their lives.

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Melissa’s Diaries: Teen Mom / Raising Issaiah

Melissa never meant to get pregnant. But now, after 12 years of living in the foster care system, she’s trying to build the family she never had.

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Portraits Extraordinary stories from ordinary places

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Walter Backerman, Seltzer Man

Once there were thousands of seltzer men in New York City. Today, Walter Backerman is one of the last.

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Selma Koch, Bra Saleswoman

94-year old Selma Koch runs the Town Shop, one of New York’s last old-style bra fitting shops.

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Histories Weaving together oral histories and archival tape to bring the past to life

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The Pygmy in the Zoo

On September 8th, 1906, New York’s Bronx Zoo unveiled a new exhibit that would attract thousands of visitors. Inside a cage, in the monkey house, was a man.

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A Guitar, A Cello, and The Day That Changed Music

November 23, 1936, was a very good day for recorded music.

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