Dictionary of American Regional English

The Dictionary of
American Regional English
Virtual Exhibit

The National Museum of Language is happy to partner with The Dictionary of American English (DARE) to present a virtual exploration on how data was collected by field researchers for the reference dictionary.

DARE is based on face-to-face interviews carried out in all 50 states between 1965 and 1970. Graduate students, primarily from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, conducted interviews and made recordings of speakers in communities across the country. The stories that you will find in this exhibit are based on the fieldworkers’ memoirs published in the DARE newsletter.

In this exhibit, you can read the stories of the field workers, play a game to try out the job as a fieldworker, and take quizzes to test your knowledge.


Meet the DARE Field Researchers

Told in a graphic novel style narrative, the field workers recount their experiences
conducting research for DARE.

Art work created by Linda Mitchell Thompson and coloring by Sophia Openshaw.

Click from the researchers below to view their story.

Reino Maki

The Adventure Begins

Ruth Porter

Postcards from Florida

Patt VanDyke

Coming Soon…

Arthur the Rat

DARE fieldworkers recorded people across the country telling this story.
Learn about the impact it had for dialect research & listen to recordings by clicking below.

Arthur the Rat

Explore the story