Enlightened by modern times we grow more aware of the faith placed in technological devices and varying outlets of communication. We live in an age with more access at our fingertips than any generation before, and daily a headline or article reminds us that we possess the power to use those resources to our advantage. If we do employ these inventions for their utilitarian use, they might propel us forward. However, dependency upon them could also threaten our demise. It may seem alarming, but even in that, alarming matters are the ones we should heed for our own good, and that of the generations to follow. Glowing screens, battery charging ports, and adapters are all well and good and will assist us with our life’s course. But as we well know, the tangible proof of existence is what remains long after we have resigned our use of the social media world.
The thought of a Community Journal is hardly original. Our founding fathers carried a writing desk and ink well across this great land, and soldiers wrote letters to loved ones while on the front lines during the World Wars. In addition, artists were there, in ditches and in the hospital tents rendering sketches of the perilous real life events. Today we may visit any institution to view documents, research and appreciate these tangible, hand rendered accounts. And oh how we cherish those old photographs.
We may only learn from the past if there is a dependable record of it. The good and the bad of society can be found there. For example, we learn of past farmers tribulations, the hardships faced by George Washington Carver and his students at Tuskeegee and their persistence via such records. And when we turn to research our own heritage, we find great use in the old documents kept by the printed newspaper and church records. Letters of bygone eras serve as maps which guide us forward, while on occasion we glance back if only to learn.
It is with these values in mind, that the Sarah West Gallery of Fine Art, Sarah West and Michele West have chosen to steward a Community Journal for Smiths Station.
This Community Journal will be an ongoing collection of journals, hosted by the Sarah West Gallery of Fine Art in collaboration with Smiths Station Archives. Each current volume will be accessible to the general public’s use. Community citizens, friends, neighbors and leaders are welcome to utilize this resource to record handwritten accounts of events, and news as it is experienced. As the pages of each volume fill, it will be archived and a new edition will be introduced.
The Community Journal will be archived for posterity and dedicated to historic preservation of local and historic accounts for the public’s access and use.
For more information on this project for local historic preservation, we welcome your inquires