In the exhibition, A Church is Born: Church of South India Inauguration, Omeka is serving a greater purpose than simply content management for an exhibition: it is providing a way of digitally preserving a deteriorating filmstrip that was discovered in the Burke Libraries’ Archives. Documenting one of the most historically significant processes in the Church Union movement, this filmstrip offers a look at the unification process of the Anglican, Methodist, Reformed, Presbyterian, and Congregationalist Churches, which led to the establishment of the Church of South India in 1947.
Project Archivist Brigette C. Kamsler in her work on the Missionary Research Library Archives identified the need to preserve the deteriorating filmstrip and went to great lengths to try to find copyright information about it. No copyright holder was identified, so the decision was made to digitize the filmstrip and curate it within an online exhibition in order to preserve it for the future, highlight this important chapter in the ecumenical movement, and provide access to the commentary and script that were found with the film. In order to document our efforts to identify rights holders, Kamsler’s work to locate copyright information is clearly described in the online exhibition itself.
The exhibition includes images from the filmstrip accompanied by the portion of the script that goes with that segment. The items have been thoroughly described in the metadata, which is available (as always in our online exhibitions) by clicking on the link to item-level information.