Monday, January 30, 2012

Shared Heritage

On Friday I attended the Southern California chapter of the American Theological Library Association (SCATLA) meeting held at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.

It is our custom to tour the host library. Pepperdine's Head of Special Collections and University Archives, Melissa Nykanen, lead the tour which, of course, included the Special Collections. This is an exciting year for her as Pepperdine celebrates their 75th year anniversary in 2012.

We started the tour in the room where the Saint John's Bible is on display. It is "a 21st-century Bible that uses a combination of medieval manuscript techniques and modern technologies and themes." Pretty nifty.

But since Hope shares the same historical roots in the Stone-Campbell Restoration Movement, their Churches of Christ Heritage Center was of particular interest to me. (Too bad I didn't get any pictures in there.) Pepperdine comes from the Churches of Christ "branch" of the movement whereas Hope is of the Independent flavor.

Special collections and archives can be an invaluable asset to an institution's heritage. They take a significant commitment of financial and human resources to maintain. Because materials are often one-of-a-kind and brittle, they are protected from human handling. Digitizing special collections for preservation has been the smart choice for libraries and museums.

Did you know that the Darling Library has digitized the first nine years of the Lampas (yearbook) and a small collection of photographs? A major project completed some years ago was to digitize a collection of sermons and other materials from charismatic church leader, Dr. George P. Taubman.

The HIU archives "identifies, collects, preserves, and makes accessible historical materials related to the ongoing history of Hope International University under its various names as well as the Restoration Movement."

Take some time to explore our heritage!

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