Billy Graham Center

Summary of the Collecting Policy of the Billy Graham Center Archives

The purpose of the archives is to collect, house and make accessible the documents of Billy Graham and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (BGEA) and to build a collection of documents that accurately reflect nondenominational evangelical North American Protestant evangelism and missions efforts. This balanced collection will be especially useful as a resource for Christian workers and scholars. The fact that no other institution is building this kind of theme collection increases the importance of the archives' work. Just as Billy Graham has been at the center of evangelism for a generation, the archives, by building a selected collection of major, representative documents, should be at the center of practical research in evangelism and missions.

We reaffirm the collecting policy adopted for the archives by the board of the BGC in May, 1977 and particularly emphasize the following points:

1. The documents of Billy Graham, the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, and the people associated with his ministry are of especial importance to collect and form the nucleus of the archives' holdings.

2. The records of other individuals and organizations (save for exceptions listed below) are collected only if they have a direct importance for the history of North American, Protestant, nondenominational evangelism and missions.

3. The files of international meetings relevant to evangelism and missions, such as the Amsterdam '83 conference, may be collected, since no one nation has a claim on them.

4. Similarly, the files of the international office of evangelistic organizations may be collected, but not the files of the national branches of the same organization (except for North American branches). Thus, for example, the archives could collect the files of the international office of Overseas Missionary Fellowship, but not the files of the British branch.

5. The archives may acquire microfilmed collections of documents that relate to missions or evangelism, but which are not necessarily North American, Protestant or nondenominational. Thus, for example, it could acquire the microfilm of Baptist Missionary Society files offered by the Southern Baptist Historical Commission, microfilm that includes the letters of William Carey and Adoniram Judson.

6. When the archives acquires the records of existing organizations other than the BGEA, those organizations should be charged at least part of the cost for shipping, storage and/or processing in return for the record management services the archives provides.

7. Acquisitions should be limited to whatever extent necessary to maintain adequate space and maintenance for all BGEA archives now and in the foreseeable future.

Approved by the BGC Committee of the Wheaton College Board of Trustees
February 15, 1985

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Last Revised: 05/30/96
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