Sanford Archives Center
The Sanford Archives Center is located in the Conference Center building in Sun Prairie. It is funded by a series of grants from the Albert and Mary Rhoades Museum and Charitable Foundation, which was formed from the estate of the Revs. Charles and Lourinda Sanford. The Sanford Center aims to collect personal archival records and oral histories from clergy in our Conference around the state, with an initial focus on the women clergy from our Conference. The personal archives of the Revs. Charles and Lourinda Sanford are located in the center, as well as the archives from other clergy we have collected. The Sanfords were one of the first “clergy couples” in full connection in our state. And the Rev. Lourinda Sanford has the distinction of being the first woman received in full connection in the West Wisconsin Conference of the Methodist Church.
The generous grants that helped us to found the center and that have continued to support its work have given us the opportunity to collect extensive oral histories with clergy from around our state and to preserve them in our Sanford Center for future generations research use. This work continues today.
One of our most noteworthy additions to the Center’s clergy collection is the personal archives of the Rev. Dr. Chomingwen Pond. We had already done an extensive oral history with the Rev. Dr. Pond, due to her ground-breaking role as the first woman ordained in full connection with Elder’s orders in the East Wisconsin Methodist Conference in 1964. But we were recently blessed to add the personal papers of the Rev. Dr. Pond to our archival collections.