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New Collections

New and Updated Collections at the BGC Archives

Katherine and Vaus in RRThe Archives is continually adding items to its holdings—newly discovered letters, a recently donated photo album, transcripts to oral history interviews, an entirely new collection, and much more.

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See the descriptions below and follow the links to learn more about new resources now open for research. 

New & Updated Collections

Collection 667: Oral History Interviews with Joanna Defoy (New, June 2021)

Oral history interviews with Johanna Defoy (1981- ), French missionary and church planter working in France from 2009 to 2011. Topics discussed include Defoy’s early life in France, parents, spiritual interest, conversion and growing faith, evangelism experiences, church involvement, professional experience, influence of a woman missionary, Christian university group and outreach, Groupes Bibliques Universitaires or GBU Christian university group (International Fellowship of Evangelical Students, IFES-related), her husband Frederic, church planting ministry in Chamonix and Annecy, work with International Teams France and survey trips to Croatia, Bosnia and Hercegovina, and Tunisia, comparison of evangelical churches in France and the U.S. 

Collection 721: Papers of Fred and Clara Elliot (New, May 2021)

Correspondence and clippings received or created by the Elliots, who were parents of the missionary Jim Elliot. Most of the collection consists of letters from Jim Elliot to his parents and/or other members of his family, although there are also numerous letters from his parents to him and letters from other correspondents, such as Elisabeth Elliot (Jim’s wife), Ed and Marilou McCully, Marj Saint, and Barbara Youderian. The letters describe contemporaneously Jim Elliot’s student years at Wheaton College, preparation for missionary service, courtship and marriage to Elisabeth, work as a Plymouth Brethren missionary in Ecuador, leading up to the death of himself and four other missionaries as they attempted to reach the Waorani Indians, called by their enemies the Auca. Throughout all the correspondence a major theme is Elliot’s description of his devotional and theological thoughts and his spiritual development.

Collection 720: Papers of Lousie H. Pierson (New, April 2021)

Photographs, mission newsletters, newspaper clippings, letters, drawings, and pressed flowers arranged in a scrapbook mainly documenting the work of several early Woman’s Union Missionary Society (WUMS) workers in China, Japan, and India. Most of the scrapbook appears to be focused on the work of Mrs. Louise Henrietta Pierson in Yokohama, Japan through the American Mission Home (now known as Yokohama Kyoritsu Kritsu Gakuen or Doremus School) from 1871-1899. 

Collection 708: Oral History Interviews with Amira Mina (New, February 2021)

Oral history interviews with Amira Mina, in which she describes her family background; spiritual formation in the Egyptian Coptic Church in Alexandria; her education at the University of Alexandria; her spiritual awakening and discipleship through Youth With A Mission (YWAM); and ministry service with YWAM working with homeless populations, refugees, and mental health patients in Egypt, India, Cambodia, Laos, Sudan, and the United Kingdom; observations of the Arab Spring in 2010, interest in substance abuse and addiction counseling; and studies in clinical mental health counseling at Wheaton College Graduate School.

Collection 719: Papers of Janet Wismer (New, January 2021)

Transcripts of broadcasts, correspondence, newsletters, articles, and memorabilia, relating to Janet Wismer's work as a staff member and producer for Elisabeth Elliot’s Gateway to Joy radio program. The collection also contains some material documenting Wismer's friendship with Elliot.

Collection 619: Oral History Interviews with Singapore Bible College (New, January 2021)

Oral history interviews with Verda Poulson, E. N. Poulson, and Dr. Buela Violet James concerning their life experiences as Singapore Bible College (SBC) faculty and staff. Topics discussed include history of SBC, student life; gender division at SBC; mission education; SBC conservativism; development of degree programs; SBC leadership and lecturers; teaching styles; student fieldwork; Overseas Missionary Fellowship; evangelism efforts in Asia; church development; Singapore; cultural adjustments; Malay language; church and government relations; Chinese Christian culture; and indigenous evangelism

Collection 217: Papers of Elisa Espineli Chinn (Updated, January 2021)

The collection consists of four oral history interviews with Lisa Chinn covering her childhood and family, education, ministry with Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship of the Philippines and InterVarsity in the United States, ministries with her husband Leiton in the US among international students (with International Students, Inc., Interaction, and their church), writing projects, and her experience as a female leader. Also included are her graduate school creative project, "Cross Cultural Awareness: Offending the Filipino Without Even Trying," a manual to assist international students who have studied in the United States, in readjusting the their home cultures, prayer letters (1979-2020) describing her ministry among international students in the United States, and a resume (1979) and brief autobiography (1988) of her Christian journey.

Collection 660: Records of the CoMission and CoMission II (New, January 2021)

Correspondence, memos, minutes, reports, transcripts, schedules, manuals, policy statements, magazine and newspaper clippings, curricula, audio recordings, videos, photographs, slides and other materials documenting the work of the Commission. This was an alliance of over eighty American Protestant ministries, churches and business (almost all Evangelical) that, in agreement with the Russia government, entered the country on a five year contract to train Russian educators to teach Christian ethics and morals in the public schools, in conjunction with the showing of the Jesus film in convocations held across the former Soviet Union. The group also hoped to develop Bible studies, indigenous Christian leaders, and ultimately to plant churches.

New Oral History Transcripts

Since the early 1980s, members of the Archives staff have conducted over 800 hours of oral history interviews with more than 275 individuals involved in mass evangelism, global missions, Christian education, community development, medical work, and Bible translation. These figures include well-known names such as Cliff Barrows, Elisabeth Elliot, David Howard, John Huffman, William Pannell, John Perkins, and many more. To date, the Archives staff have completed over 430 transcripts to these interviews. Follow the links below to read our latest oral history transcripts. 

Please note: Oral history interview transcripts are not available online during the interviewee's lifetime. 

Collection 164: Oral History Interview with Elizabeth Stair Small. Transcript for Tape 1 (added August 2021)

Collection 465: Oral History Interview with Merry E. Long. Transcript for Tape 2 (added May 2021) 

Collection 478: Oral History Interviews with Paul A. Buyse. Transcripts for Tape 2, 3 & 4 (Added April 2021)

Collection 465: Oral History Interview with Merry E. Long. Transcript for Tape 1 (added February 2021) 

Collection 347: Oral History Interviews with Ruth M. Long. Transcript for Tape 1 & 2 (Added February 2021)

Collection 658: Papers of Samuel D. Faircloth. Transcript for Tape 1 (Added January 2021)

Collection 624: Ephemera of the ZamZam. Transcript for Tape 2 & 3 (Added January 2021)

Collection 453: Oral History Interviews with Paul H. Bartel. Transcript for Tape 1 & 2 (Added January 2021)