A native Texan, I studied as both an undergraduate and graduate student at Baylor University. I did my PhD work at Arizona State University in the United States Post-1945, Public History, and the American West. My first academic position was as the co-director of the Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage at the University of Southern Mississippi. I returned to Baylor in 2007 as a professor in the Department of History and the Director of the Institute for Oral History. I am active in local history organizations, a past president of Historic Waco Foundation and the Heart of Texas Regional History Fair. One key local initiative that I created and develop is Waco History, a website (www.wacohistory.org) and free mobile app on local history. A project also developed from this interest is the Waco History Podcast (www.wacohistorypodcast.com). I am an elder in my church here in Waco, Acts Church. In the community of oral historians, I am a past president of the national Oral History Association. I have organized, directed, and presented scores of oral history projects with work funded at the local, state, and national level. I have had the opportunity to present my research at many state and national meetings and abroad at conferences in Liverpool, Prague, Guadalajara, Naples, Istanbul, Buenos Aires, Barcelona, and Jyväskylä, Finland.
Areas of Expertise (6)
Oral Histories Of Genocide
Texas WWII Vets And Liberation Of Concentration Camps
Cold War Crises and Conflicts
2018 Elizabeth B. Mason Project Award for the Survivors of Genocide Oral History Project (professional)
From May 2015 through October 2016, the Baylor University Institute for Oral History conducted fourteen oral histories with survivors of the genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda/Burundi, Bosnia, and Darfur. This work was contracted through a grant from the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission in order for survivors who now live in Texas to tell their stories of escaping the horrors of their homelands and finding a new life in the United States.
2015 Book Award from the Oral History Association (professional)
For its strong analysis and examination of international and interdisciplinary oral history work in post-disaster settings, Listening on the Edge: Oral History in the Aftermath of Catastrophe co-edited by Associate Professor Stephen Sloan has been awarded the 2015 Book Award from the Oral History Association.
Arizona State University: Ph.D. 2003
Baylor University: M.A. 1998
Baylor University: B.B.A. 1990
- Oral History Association
- Historic Waco Foundation
- Heart of Texas Regional History Fair
Media Appearances (18)
Chip and Joanna Gaines Return With Their Most Royal Project Yet
Baylor graduates Chip and Joanna Gaines are back with a brand-new show, “Fixer Upper: The Castle,” in which they restore one of Waco’s most prized properties. Baylor historian Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., provided the popular home renovation stars with the history of the property, with photos and newspaper articles about the castle written from the time of its 1913 grand debut.
Stephen Sloan and Adrienne Cain
Baylor Connections online
AUDIO: Baylor’s Institute for Oral History preserves history through the collection of stories that would otherwise go untold. In this Baylor Connections, Stephen Sloan, director of the Institute and associate professor of history at Baylor, and Adrienne Cain, associate director and lecturer, share more. They explain how oral historians democratize history and offer tips for individuals seeking to preserve the stories of family or friends.
FOX44 Special Report: Magnolia Empire’s Legacy in Waco
VIDEO: Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., associate professor of history and director of Institute for Oral History at Baylor, was interviewed for this story about how Magnolia and the Silos have transformed Waco to the thriving tourist destination it is today.
Heroic doctor, Baylor alum remembered by loved ones after being killed in attack on California church
AUDIO: Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., associate professor of history, remembers his Baylor classmate Dr. John Cheng, B.A. ’91, who was killed after he heroically confronted an active shooter inside a church in California on May 15.
68 Years Ago: Remembering the deadly Waco tornado
VIDEO: Baylor historian Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., shares the history of the deadly Waco tornado on May 11, 1953, through an app called "Waco History" that tells the story of the tornado's path and its lasting effects on the downtown area.
Bank opens in East Waco for first time in 100 years
TFNB Your Bank For Life opened the first bank to serve East Waco in more than a century. Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., associate professor of history & director of the Institute for Oral History at Baylor, provides a brief history behind banking in East Waco and the positive effects the bank has on the community.
Impeachment panel investigates constitutional context
Baylor Lariat online
Former U.S. Reps. Alan Steelman and Chet Edwards, Baylor law professor Rory Ryan and history professor Stephen Sloan participated in the “Investigating Impeachment” panel Thursday afternoon in Cashion Academic Center.
Former U.S. Representatives, Baylor Faculty to Contextualize Impeachment Proceedings
Baylor Media and Public Relations online
Former members of the U.S. Congress – Rep. Alan Steelman (R-TX 5th District, 1973-1976) and Rep. Chet Edwards (D-TX 11th and 17th Districts, 1991-2010) – will be joined by Baylor Law Professor Rory Ryan and Baylor History Professor Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., for a panel discussion and Q&A, “Investigating Impeachment: Context, Congress, and the Constitution,” at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6, on the fifth floor of the Cashion Academic Center on the campus of Baylor University.
Local history podcast tackling 'Waco's Known and Unknown Stories'
Waco Tribune-Herald print
Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., associate professor of history in Baylor’s College of Arts & Sciences and director of the Institute for Oral History, has joined with Randy Lane, a former Navy broadcast journalist, to produce the Waco History podcast, “Waco’s Known and Unknown Stories,” which offers in-depth dives into stories from Waco’s past. For Sloan, the podcast is the latest expansion of local history on a digital platform, joining the Waco History phone app that he helped produce with the Texas Collection, and the website www.wacohistory.org.
State of the heart of oral history
Seekers and Scholars Podcast (Mary Baker Eddy Library) online
In this episode, explore the importance and value of oral history with guest Dr. Stephen Sloan, director of Baylor University’s Institute for Oral History. Library employees Judy Huenneke and Steve Graham engage with Sloan on the art and practice of oral history, including its unique public and historical purpose. Huenneke and Graham are in the process of building a catalog of oral histories that document the living history of the Christian Science movement and the legacy of Mary Baker Eddy
Survivors Share Stories, Lessons in New Institute for Oral History Project
Survivors of some of the last half-century’s worst atrocities now have their stories and firsthand experiences preserved for future generations through a special Baylor Institute for Oral History (IOH) project, the Survivors of Genocide project, commissioned and funded by the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission. “When we hear about genocide, we see numbers, often graphic numbers, and hear reports of atrocities,” said Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., B.B.A. ’90, M.A. ’98, Baylor IOH director and assistant professor of history. “What can be lost is the human experience. What is it like for an individual to encounter this and continue to live a life? What oral histories and this project bring is that human experience—someone touched as closely as you can be by an event, relating it to you to help us understand.”
Baylor records oral histories of genocide survivors
Baptist Standard online
The stories of 14 people who survived genocides and other atrocities in their countries — Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia, Darfur and Burundi — have been compiled in videos and transcripts for an online exhibit by Baylor’s Institute for Oral History (IOH). The survivors managed to escape, immigrate to the United States and begin new lives. Quoted is Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., IOH director, who said that personal oral history is “the best way to understand the human experience of these horrific events.”
Stories of Genocide Survivors Are Chronicled by Baylor’s Institute for Oral History
Baylor Media and Public Relations online
Fourteen people who escaped horrors in their countries give firsthand accounts in videos.
Foundation for India Studies Receives Support from Baylor University’s Institute of Oral History
Indo American News online
“I am very impressed by the quality and scope of the more than fifty oral history interviews already gathered through the Houston Indo-American Oral History Project. These stories offer a rich tapestry of the community’s history,” said Dr. Stephen Sloan, Director, Baylor University’s Institute of Oral History. “We are pleased to consult on the next phase of FIS’ oral history work documenting the history of the partition of India through the experiences of those refugees that settled in Texas in the wake of this dramatic political and demographic change.”
Prison Camp Liberators of WWII: Baylor University Finds New Way to Pay Tribute to Texas Heroes
Baylor Media and Public Relations
The firsthand accounts of 19 Texas veterans who helped liberate World War II Nazi concentration camps now can be seen and heard on Baylor University’s Institute for Oral History (IOH) website using a new video indexing tool that allows a rare type of access to their compelling stories.
McLennan History in The Palm of Your Hand
As I drive throughout Waco with Stephen Sloan, director of Baylor University’s Institute for Oral History, he’s quick to point out how he now thinks in “pins” – like the kind you’d find on a map marking a specific spot. “I have this experience as I drive now, I see pins," Sloan says. "We just passed a couple of pins, we got a pin up here on the left we’re passing and we’re gonna stop at another pin just over the hill.” The “pin” we’re arriving at is Jasper’s BBQ on Elm Avenue – It’s Waco’s oldest operating barbecue restaurant. However, these pins aren’t your typical destination, they’re markers throughout McLennan County indicating historical locations. And they’re all part of a free app called Waco History. There’s even a companion website. Both – which were spearheaded by the Institute for Oral History and Baylor’s Texas Collection – serve as somewhat of a virtual museum. Both organizations along with students pre-populated the app with written histories, archival photos and audio clips on historic places throughout McLennan County.
New “Waco History” Website and Mobile App, Created by Baylor University, Showcase Central Texas Heritage
Baylor Media Communications online
The project — “Waco History” — is a website at www.wacohistory.org and a free mobile app showcasing the people, places and moments that have shaped “the heart of Texas,” said Stephen Sloan, Ph.D., director of the Institute for Oral History.
'Unreleased Cuts' About Woodstock Can Go Beyond Upcoming DVDs and CDs
Baylor Media and Public Relations online
Oral history expert encourages that those who made the trek record their versions.
Swimming in the Exaflood: Oral History as Information in the Digital AgeOral History and Digital Humanities
2014 As this volume well demonstrates, the impact of digital media on oral history is wide and far-reaching. In a relatively short time, new technologies have revolutionized countless aspects of the work of oral history—from creation, to preservation, to use—and raised a multitude of discussions among oral historians on the impact of new technologies on oral history practice. What is also needed is a discourse on the nature of oral history in the midst of this dramatic change. In the revolution brought about by the introduction and rapid evolution of the digital age, what is the place of oral history as information in that new environment? As well-known professor and management consultant Peter Drucker declared in 1999, the first phase of the IT (Information Technology) revolution was focused on the “T” rather than the “I.” In the new millennium, Drucker argued, the most pressing question that must be dealt with is the nature of information itself: “What is the MEANING of information and its PURPOSE?” 2 For this conversation, I would argue that oral historians need to follow the same path. It has been important to examine the technological aspect of this revolution, but what about the meaning and purpose of oral history as part of this new information landscape?
After the Fall: New Yorkers Remember September 11, 2001 and the Years That FollowedThe Oral History Review
2011 On September 11, 2001, about midmorning in central Arizona, my three-year-old son reached up and turned off the television in an attempt to calm his mother who was overcome with sadness. The horror, panic, and chaos of that fateful day affected people and places far removed from the terrorist attacks and became a point in time at which lives were divided into before and after. It was a watershed event with national and international ramifications. A catastrophe of such great scale overwhelms individual human experience. What it meant on a personal level to live through and continue to live with the events of September 11 is displaced by larger, and invariably more simplistic, narratives. In such contexts, the power of oral history, as a way to...