From Mary Voell:
Over the past few months you’ve seen indications of a few church mice who have taken on a multi-year project. An initial search for Voell family records took me up to the 2nd floor of the Parish House, space I knew well first as a volunteer, then as Director of Stewardship & Development from 1999 to 2008. Seeing the mountains of used and unused committee inventory piled in and around the archives, the water and ceiling damage, cobwebs and moldy carpeting, it became evident that a renewed effort to save our history needed to be undertaken.
Our work takes us back to the beginning of St. Sebastian Parish in 1911, as we get to know the founding men and women, the various groups and committees who built our strong foundation of faith and community in a time long past. We visit images and documents that celebrate the families that moved to the edge of Milwaukee, marrying, baptizing, educating, and burying loved ones, and establishing lifelong friendships for well over 100 years.
The Archive Team, better known as the “A” Team includes parishioners and alumni Jackie Briski, Kathleen Hallisy, Susan Hoffman, Lorena Liongson, Dee Nordgren, Sue Schramek, JoAnn Stasciewicz, Mary Welch-Donovan, and Mary Voell. Each of the “A” Team members have taken on homework assignments to build databases from old parishioner cards, preserve Holy Name Memorial records, save Home & School deteriorating scrapbooks, build parishioner and alumni filing systems to name a few. Themes include: Parish History, Past Parishioners, Alumni, Priests & Sisters Who Served, Parish Committees and Events, etc. For anyone who loves history and better yet, touching and preserving history, it’s a most enjoyable venture.
The health of any community is the rich history from which it was founded. My hope is to create indexes, directories and accessibility for those doing their own family and ancestral research.
How You Can Help
- Most importantly, if you have documents left by your grandparents, parents or yourself that you wish to donate or make copies of to build the Sebs Archives, please leave them at the Parish House, Attention Mary Voell. Leave your name and contact information so that the appropriate donation paperwork can be provided.
- A project such as this also can use:
- Archival safe / Acid free 8 ½ x 11 Sheet Protectors
- Archival safe / acid free 12 x 12 album sheet protectors
- 12 x 12 albums
- 6, 8, 10 foot boards for shelving
- Because of the varied sizes of documents, I’d love to find a 2 drawer lateral file cabinet.
- Please do not just drop off binders and folders. We have plenty. E-mail me first to see if we need what you may surface in your spring cleaning.
If you have any questions or you’d like to join our “A” Team, please feel free to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.