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WTC Sonic Memorial
An audio tribute to the sounds of life at the World Trade Center

WTC memories
Photo: Charles Traub, courtesy of Here Is New York

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  • Feb. 4, 2002 -- Once, the World Trade Center towers were alive with sound: night-shift workers listening to Spanish radio tunes while they cleaned offices, sightseers chattering on the rooftop observation deck, even the strains of The Wedding March when couples said their vows there.

    To honor the voices stilled when the towers were destroyed Sept. 11, a team of independent radio producers set out to compile a "sonic memorial" -- an audio project commemorating the life and history of the World Trade Center. On All Things Considered, Jay Allison, the curator of the memorial, shares a sample of the sounds contributed so far.

    The memorial was launched about a month ago, as part of the occasional NPR feature Lost and Found Sound. On All Things Considered, Allison asked listeners to contribute voicemail tapes, tourist tapes, recordings of events in the Trade Center plaza. Listeners may still contribute their memories to the project, by calling (202) 408-0300.

    The Sonic Memorial is a collaboration led by independent radio producers The Kitchen Sisters, Nikki Silva and Davia Nelson; Jay Allison, public radio station WNYC, and NPR News. Further stories about the sounds of the Trade Center will be heard later in the year.

    Other Resources

    To see and hear more about The Sonic Memorial Project, visit the project Web site at


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    Copyright 2002 The Kitchen Sisters