Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research
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General Conference Archives

The General Conference of Seventh-day Adventists is the world administrative center for the denomination. Its Archives houses records covering the entire period of the church's history. Patrons are able to trace the development of the church through these records, which include legal instruments, minutes, reference files, reports, correspondence, publications, recordings, films, video and audio tapes, and photographs. The Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research is commissioned to preserve all materials produced by the General Conference.

Holdings of the General Conference Archives presently total over 10,000 linear feet, and are stored primarily in a fireproof, climate-controlled vault. They are arranged according to the following general categories:

Administrative Records. Each distinct administrative or functional unit of the General Conference, its institutions, and its divisions is represented. They are classified under these headings:

    Administrative and Legal Bodies
    Presidential
    Secretariat
    Treasury
    General Departments
    Bureaus, Associations, Services, etc.
    General Conference Institutions
    Seventh-day Adventist Professional Groups

Included among the many important documents in this category are records of the Foreign Mission Board, proceedings of the 1919 Bible Conference, and correspondence of the early presidents, secretaries and treasurers of the General Conference. In these administrative records are found the story of Seventh-day Adventist missions, the saga of the church's growth and development, graphic portrayals of its wrestling with theological concepts and issues, the images of its hopes and dreams--illustrated thousands of times in decades-old documents.

Personal Collections. These are nonofficial papers of former General Conference staff members and others who have made a contribution to the purposes of the church. There are nearly 100 personal collections housed in the Archives.

Published Records. This broad category includes several hundred monographs, a large collection of pamphlets, department and service publications, and brochures.

Periodicals. The General Conference Archives contains one of the largest and most complete collections of English-language Seventh-day Adventist periodicals to be found anywhere. There are over 750 titles, many of them beginning with the first issue.

Audio-Visual Materials. This category includes photographs, films, slides, tape recordings, videotapes, and evangelistic and prophetic charts.

More detailed summaries of selected holdings are available on request.

Most archival materials more than ten years old are available to responsible researchers and church leaders. A few items are restricted; among them are personnel and legal files. These are preserved for administrative use.

The research room provides study tables, numerous finding aids, microfilm and microfiche readers, a photocopying machine, and the services of a full-time archives specialist. There is a small library specializing in denominational history.

Hours are 8:30-11:45 am and 1:00-5:15 pm, Monday through Thursday; morning hours only on Friday. Inquiries are welcomed from anyone wishing to conduct research at the General Conference Office of Archives, Statistics, and Reserch (contact: Peter Chiomenti).

The General Conference Office of Archives, Statistics, and Research is one of two research facilities at the General Conference. The other is the Ellen G White Estate, which also operates a number of research centers on college and university campuses around the world.  The White Estate headquarters is adjacent to the General Conference Archives and its collection complements that of the Archives. Scholarly research on almost any denominational topic should include the resources of both organizations. In addition, there is a full-service library located on the first floor of the General Conference headquarters building.

Seventh-day Adventist research facilities with archival holdings related to the history of the Seventh-day Adventist Church include:

    Heritage Room - James White Library, Andrews University (Berrien Springs, Michigan)
    Heritage Room - Loma Linda University (Loma Linda, California)
    Heritage Room - Oakwood College (Huntsville, Alabama)

Other Seventh-day Adventist research resources include:

Seventh-day Adventist Periodical Index


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