Encouraging Meetings to Submit Records to the Archives

The Historical Records and Archives Committee would like to again encourage Friends to submit meeting records to the New England Yearly Meeting Collection held at University of Massachusetts Special Collections and University Archive (SCUA).

For some meetings, the preparation and submission of records to an archive is a long-held practice; for others it is an administrative task that may get lost over time or was never truly established.  I know that this is true in my meeting. It seems that there are so many questions as I begin to gather up records to send to SCUA!

What do we as a Meeting include in our submission to the Archives?

The Collection Policy for New England Yearly Meeting lists the following categories of documents:

  • Minutes of Meetings for Business
  • Indexes of—or collated—Meeting minutes or vital statistics
  • Committee reports
  • Vital statistics (Vital statistics include records of membership, births, deaths, marriages, burials, removals, memorials, denials and acknowledgments.)
  • Annual financial statements
  • Newsletters
  • Photographs, videos, recordings
  • Meeting websites

When did our meeting last submit papers?

  • SCUA is working to provide a finding aid for each Meeting online.  Some Meetings are already represented and you can see what they have recorded so far. Otherwise, it is possible to look up what was gathered up to 1997 in the published Guide to New England Collection (1997).  You can also contact SCUA: Ask an archivist.

More questions? Of course, there are more questions, such as "We have some materials or books that seem important but are not listed above, should we submit these?" "Some of our committee reports contain sensitive material—do we want to submit them?"

For these and other additional questions, send them to [email protected]. We have an outreach archivist who can help answer questions or guide a discernment regarding specific types of documents.