The Consortium Institutional Archive: A Model for Preserving Memory at a Historically Black Seminary
Institutional archives remain largely a product of affluent, predominately white colleges and universities in the United States. Many schools with limited resources cannot support an archive. The historical structural inequities faced by many HBCUs only compound the difficulty of establishing and maintaining these repositories of institutional memory. The field of archival studies has largely told its history through the lens of white institutions; scholarship engaging historically black archives, especially at HBCUs, remains limited. This paper examines the history of the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) and its archives and the ways in which institutional history has been preserved by the ITC over time. The ITC is a federally recognized HBCU consortium of seminaries in Atlanta established in the late 1950s as way to make accredited graduate theological education available to clergy in predominately black Protestant denominations. Informed by research at ITC’s archive, this paper considers the consortium model both as a means of attaining accreditation and a vehicle for facilitating the establishment of institutional archives. The ITC offers an example of collaborative archiving to preserve multiple voices and histories of historically underrepresented institutions and a model of institutional self-publication to preserve and share institutional memory.
consortium, archive, memory, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, HBCU, Interdenominational Theological Center, ITC
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Hessler, S. M. (2022). The consortium institutional archive: A model for preserving memory at a historically Black seminary. The International Journal of Equity and Social Justice in Higher Education, 1, 21-24. https://doi.org/10.56816/2771-1803.1007