Stories from North of Main: Neighborhood Heritage Story Mapping

Author(s): Siobhan Hart; George Homsy

Year: 2017


This paper discusses the use of GIS Story Map applications for discerning shared values and community capacity building in a small, diverse, deindustrialized urban neighborhood in Binghamton, New York. Most local sustainability and revitalization projects focus on homogeneous communities that have shared stories and understandings about the neighborhood’s past and present. But in the economically marginalized and diverse neighborhoods of America’s smaller rust belt cities, narratives of decline dominate and shape perceptions of the place and its residents, perpetuating race and class-based divisions. The Neighborhood Heritage and Sustainability Project is a community-based effort to understand neighborhood change and create an alternative to elite-driven heritage. Through interviews with residents, business owners, activists, and city officials we are working to identify shared values, aspirations, and experiences that can be the basis for new neighborhood stories. Using the GIS Story Map Application, we are mapping the multiple meanings attached to different neighborhood places, layering audio, images, and text to create stories of work, home, and community life. Here, we report on the results of this project and evaluate the effectiveness of digital mapping and storytelling for a marginalized urban neighborhood.

Cite this Record

Stories from North of Main: Neighborhood Heritage Story Mapping. Siobhan Hart, George Homsy. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430877)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -80.815; min lat: 39.3 ; max long: -66.753; max lat: 47.398 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 14941