Behind The Scenes – Part 3

Collecting For Church Covid-19 Archive

We are living in a perilous times, as did the American people during October 1918. That month, the second wave of the misnamed Spanish Flu closed churches, businesses and indeed, all of society.

With uncanny similarities to the 1918 pandemic, the 2020 Covid-19 led the historians at the Presbyterian Heritage Center in Montreat in May to begin seeking objects, archival materials (both digital and physical), and web content that reflect the experiences of the public, Presbyterian/Reformed churches, organizations, and others.

Examples include online videos of church services, church newsletters, posters, photos, newspaper clippings, etc. We have been in contact with churches, pastors and individuals across the country, from such places as Kentucky, Michigan, New Mexico, New York, and North Carolina.

This material could be used in future exhibits and by authors/researchers of this time.

As one observer noted: “Museums serve many roles in a modern community – providing education and a window into other worlds. But one of the key things that a museum can do is help people to understand moments in history. By documenting the pandemic that we are living through, museums can help us to make sense of it – both in the short and the long term. This process puts together a collective memory of the event.”

If you have ideas and materials for this Covid collection, contact the PHC with questions or to arrange delivery of materials – info@phcmontreat.org


Today’s post was written by PHC Executive Director, Ron Vinson.

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