Conference Archives internship begins
February 4, 2020 / By Susan Slenker, Crossroads District representative to CAH team
The UNY Commission on Archives and History (CAH) is pleased to announce that our first Syracuse University intern began to work late January in the UNY Conference Center rooms. Brewington Bryant will graduate in May with a Master’s in Library and Information Science. Initially, he is working weekly to unbox, identify, and sort materials from closed churches and rehouse them archivally. The CAH has spearheaded the establishment of the UNYUMC Archives to preserve the more than 200-year history of Methodism upstate. Conference liaisons are the Rev. Bill Gottschalk-Fielding (UNY Director of Connectional Ministries and Assistant to the Bishop) and Karen Campolieto (Media Resource Coordinator and Archives Assistant).
CAH’s budget for 2020 is allowing the hiring of an intern, purchase of archival preservation materials, and additional appropriate shelving and filing for the thousands of items transferred here when the four conferences merged. As churches close, their records must also be preserved. The CAH has volunteers who will work with each District to pre-sort closing church records on-site.
Note, however, that a number of District representatives on the CAH have retired or are finishing their terms.
The following current Districts need representatives now: Binghamton, Cornerstone, Genesee Valley, Mohawk, Mountain View, Northern Flow. In mid-2020, Adirondack and Albany Districts will need new representatives. If you know of a church member with an interest in history in any one of these Districts, or are yourself interested, please consider serving the Conference. Nominations are due now to the Conference, and the form can be found at http://www.unyumc.org/resources/opportunities-to-serve. The CAH meets in person 2-3 times a year, and also works in the Archives rooms, and 2-3 times by conference phone call. In-person meetings are usually in conjunction with the Upper New York United Methodist Historical Society.