Collecting old documents, invoices, photos, letters, postcards, club & company minutes, programs, fliers, posters, house sale details and paperwork related to Sudbury’s past.
Sudbury has a remarkable history by any standards. We have a vibrant local museum, and the Suffolk Records Office which collects more formal documents and records. We have the thriving Gainsborough House birth place of the English portrait and landscape painter Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788).
But history, especially local history, is about more than the big events. It is often the personal, detailed insights into the lives of our forbears which can bring history to life and give a sense of nearness and a feeling of what life was really like for them.
We are talking about letters, brochures, newspapers and cuttings, bills, programmes, catalogues, magazines and, of course, photographs and so on. All that is what we mean by ephemera.
Too often these are things that get thrown out when someone moves, scales down or dies. But these are the very things we want people to preserve and, hopefully, in due course, donate to SEA. That will allow us to preserve and catalogue them, and make them available to historians and the general public.
The Sudbury Town Council have kindly donated a space within the Town Hall for the Archive, and we have the prospect of long term premises elsewhere in the town. We have also been very lucky in attracting a lively group of volunteers, who are working out the practicalities of doing all the above.
So what are we looking for? First, more volunteers, because we need a lot of help; second, the ephemera to go in the Archive; third, donations to enable us to pay for the equipment and installations which we will need to do a good job.