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CSU Archives

Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Collection (MC 263)


Organizational Note

Historical Sketch

The Jubilee of Saint Thomas Church Oral Histories (October 30, 2005) was a project designed to capture the history of Saint Thomas through a series of oral interviews conducted by John Lupold and edited by Lynn Willoughby and his Committee Staff on Oral Histories which included: Mary Jane Wadkins, Bob Watkins, Amy Nerone, Michael Ankerich, Michael Owen, Allison Owen, Bill Combs, Sonya Boyd, Ann Johnson, Ann Burr, Anne King, and Doug Hahn.


Brief History of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church

In 1958, the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church was founded on the outer edge of Columbus Georgia. Today the area has become known as Historic Midtown. At its annual Parish meeting in 1970, the Rector recommended the construction of a house of worship for the community of Columbus. According to church records; the proposal was endorsed by those in attendance and was officially adopted by the Vestry. In 1972, the building was completed and dedicated by Bishop Bennett J. Sims on October 1, 1972. Legend has it that St. Thomas was chosen as the new church's patron because of what Thomas signifies. Thomas was the disciple who doubted Christ and was referred to as doubting Thomas. This refers to the state of some of the congregation, who doubted whether the church would come to fruition.

In 1970 and 1971 plans for the Nave were developed and the windows were commissioned to tell the story of Creation through scenes of Biblical narratives selected by the Adult Bible Class of Saint Thomas. The Willet Studios of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania made each of the windows of faceted glass, carved on the inner surfaces to give a jewel-like appearance. The thickness of the glass varies from one to three inches, giving a three dimensional effect in some scenes. The narrative begins on the left wall and progresses through the symbol of the Cross to the right wall, concluding, with its proclamation of Christ as the Alpha and the Omega of all things as foretold in the Bible. The Oral History Project of the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Manuscript Collection is the direct result of church members' vision to capture on tape the history of Saint Thomas for future generations.


Series Description

Materials in the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Collection are arranged in three series:

Series I. Church Correspondence and Biographical Files

This series contains Church correspondence concerning church directories, church committee meetings, and Jubilee planning. In addition are biographical files outlining the history of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church and copies of legal documents.


Series II. Oral Histories

Arranged alphabetically, this series contains manuscripts and tapes and some video of interviews of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church members sharing their memories of their involvement with Saint Thomas Church.


Series Ill. Manuscript/Book

The final series consists of one manuscript book titled Grace and Glory: Fifty Years of Spiritual Adventures at St. Thomas written by Michael Owen outlining the history of the Church.


Scope and Content


The Collection contains news articles, clippings, minutes of committee meetings, church announcements, church programs, photographs, and church newsletters.

The bulk of the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Collection deals with taped and transcribed interviews of members of Saint Thomas Church . Legal papers contain information about the establishment of Saint Thomas in 1958 and later additions in 1971. The Church papers include the will of the late Georgia Mustian Wilkins of Muscogee County Georgia in which a second codicil of her last will and testament was attached and signed by her and three witnesses, Tom B. Slade, Lee H. Henkel, Jr., and Clifford J. Swift, Jr., March 3, 1959. This codicil expressed her wise to the Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church of America of the Diocese of Atlanta that the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church in Columbus should become an incorporated Church.

The first series, Church Correspondence and Biographical Files, contains one linear foot of materials which highlight the everyday life of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church . Included in the series is Church correspondence concerning church directories, committee meetings, pictures, pamphlets, Church directories and Jubilee planning committee meeting notes. It also contains biographical files outlining the history of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church and copies of legal documents.

Series two, Oral Histories, contains one linear foot of materials arranged alphabetically. This includes manuscripts and tapes and some video-taped interviews of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church members sharing their memories of the church.

The final series a manuscript book titled Grace and Glory: Fifty Years of Spiritual Adventures at St. Thomas written by Michael Owen outlining the history of the Church. Researchers should note that this book is an account of the oral histories of the members of Saint Thomas Episcopal Church.

1950s-2000s 28 cassette tapes, 3 CDs, manuscript 2 boxes (3 l.f.)

Permission to Publish

Permission to publish material from the Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Manuscript Collection must be obtained from the Columbus State University Archives. Use of the following credit line for publication or exhibit is required:

Saint Thomas Episcopal Church Manuscript Collection (MC 263)
Columbus State University Archives
Columbus, Georgia


Provenance

Donated to Columbus State University archives by Saint Thomas's Jubilee Oral History Committee and Saint Thomas Episcopal Church in 2009.


Box and Folder List

Series 1: Church Correspondence and Biographical files

Box 1

Folder 1 – Building Correspondence

Folder 2 – Gift of Personal Statements

Folder 3 – Committee Meetings

Folder 4 – Timeline Correspondence

Folder 5 – Church Programs and Announcements

Folder 6 – The Thomasonian Journal/Newsletter

Folder 7 – Photographs and Prints

Folder 8 – Personal Correspondence and Directories

Folder 9 – News Articles, Clippings, deaths, births, obituaries

Folder 10 – Grace and Glory History Book (copies)


Series II: Oral Histories

Box 2

Folder 1 – Robert Amon

Folder 2 – Alice Anderson

Folder 3 – Anne Baker, 2006

Folder 4 – Sonya Boyd

Folder 5 – Caroline and Stan Carnaru, 2007

Folder 6 – Nicole and Jack Ceccato, 2007

Folder 7 – Emily Cosby, 2007

Folder 8 – Patricia Williams Cozzetto, 2007

Folder 9: Ruth Cummings

Folder 10 – Betty and Pat Daniel

Folder 11 – Hal Daniel

Folder 12 – Roscoe Duncan

Folder 13 – Johnny Flakes, 2007

Folder 14 – Melanie Boozer Gillenwaters, 2007

Folder 15 – Deanna Grube

Folder 16 – Judy Gunter

Folder 17 – Linda and Sam Harmon, 2007

Folder 18 – Flo Hiatt

Folder 19 – C. D. Johnson, 2006

Folder 20 – David Johnson, 2006

Folder 21 – Katherine Johnson, 2007

Folder 22 – Ann and Paul Johnston, 2007

Folder 23 – Ron King, 2007

Folder 24 – Esther and Lewis, 2007

Folder 25 – Lori Lowe

Folder 26 -- Pauline Marth

Folder 27 – Martin and Sandra McCann, 2008

Folder 28 – Connie McEwen, 2006

Folder 29 – Carol Amon McCehe

Folder 30 – G. I. and Sarah Morris

Folder 31 – John and Vicky Partin, 2007

Folder 32 – Jane and Mason Rivers, 2006

Folder 33 – Charlie Roper, 2006

Folder 34 – Jean Sendelbach, 2006

Folder 35 – The Jim Sholtis Family

Folder 36 – Tom Thompson and wife

Folder 37 – Dick and Shirley Traugh

Folder 38 – Alice Turley, 2006

Folder 39 – Sherry Wade

Folder 40 – Mitchi McKnight and Travis Wade

Folder 41 – Mary Jane Wadkins, 2006

Folder 42 – Gene and Jewell Wells, 2006

Folder 43 – Finley and Heidi Williamson, 2007


Series Ill: Manuscript Book

Pocket Folder

Folder 1 – Grace and Glory: Fifty Years of Spiritual Adventures at St. Thomas, by Michael Owen