Milton historian is filming local documentary on pandemic

A scene from October 2020 of students wearing masks at Milton High School. Jordan Kohanim talks to one of her students Lara Reinsch, 16, as she works with students to create a yearbook that marks the school's 100th anniversary at Milton High School.  Milton Historical Society is separately making a documentary of the pandemic.  (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)
A scene from October 2020 of students wearing masks at Milton High School. Jordan Kohanim talks to one of her students Lara Reinsch, 16, as she works with students to create a yearbook that marks the school's 100th anniversary at Milton High School. Milton Historical Society is separately making a documentary of the pandemic. (Hyosub Shin / Hyosub.Shin@ajc.com)

Credit: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

Credit: HYOSUB SHIN / AJC

The Milton Historical Society has started filming a documentary of residents’ experiences during the pandemic.

Jeff Dufresne, president of the organization, is producer of the film project titled, “Milton Memoirs.” Dufresne said he’s interviewed 50 people ages eight to 80 and plans to talk to more on the stresses and joys brought on by the limited lifestyle of 2020 and 2021.

“I want to cover the pandemic from start to end,” Dufresne said.

The historical society is calling on residents who want to be a part of the film to submit their contact information on the website and to also email photos that document their way of life.

Dufresne said when the pandemic started in March he was instantly inspired to start the project.

“I talked to neighbors and sensed it was a historic event,” he said. “I felt an obligation to document it in real time.”

The historian said he has talked to a range of people so far including students, teachers, artists, physicians and law enforcement.

“It’s like a bolt of lightning and all of a sudden things have changed,” Dufresne said of the coronavirus pandemic. “Even if you’re in a secure corporate job, you don’t know what’s happening to you.”

The filmmaker is planning for the documentary to be 30 minutes in length and plans to seek funding support from foundations and the local community, he said.

“It’s not going to be Ken Burns (level of documentary film) but I’d like to be a contender,” Dufresne said.

Information on participating in the project is available on the Milton Historical Society website.

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