Browse Exhibits (2 total)

Early Methodists and Their Books


Originally exhibited August 20–December 14, 2012
The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries


Among John Wesley’s most enduring gifts to the early Methodist movement was his constant encouragement to make use of a great variety of beneficial reading materials. Through his published advertisements for newly available Methodist titles and specific reading recommendations made in his personal letters, Wesley created a community that shared a common bond in affordable, easily-read, and useful books intended for education and worship.

The fifty items in this exhibition reveal how readers in the first century of the Methodist tradition (c. 1739–1839) acquired, read, inscribed, annotated, and treasured their books. Selected from Bridwell Library’s Special Collections, these volumes include several owned by John Wesley or his brother Charles Wesley, original manuscripts used by early Methodist ministers, and numerous books and hymnals inscribed with the names of everyday Methodist pioneers, male and female, in England and America.

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The Archives at Bridwell Library


Originally exhibited February 1, 2017–June 30, 2017
The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries


Archives are groups of historical records documenting the activities of organizations and the lives of individuals. Archives are also the repositories that house such records. Bridwell Library is an archive of many archives where researchers may access more than half a mile of archival materials documenting the history of the Methodist movement.

The historical records owned by Bridwell Library comprise three closely-related archives: the Perkins School of Theology Archive, the Bridwell Library Archive, and the Methodist Studies Archive. Additionally, four United Methodist bodies lodge their archival materials at Bridwell Library in order to enhance both preservation and access. The archivists of the South Central Jurisdiction, the North Texas Annual Conference, the Rio Grande Annual Conference, and the Texas United Methodist Historical Society work closely with the archivist of Bridwell Library to manage the most extensive set of Methodist-related primary resources in the Southwestern United States.

The archival program at Bridwell Library serves the historical research community by collecting, preserving, arranging, and describing historical records; promoting awareness and facilitating use of the archival collections; assisting researchers in person and remotely; curating exhibitions; and making presentations to university classes and outside groups. This exhibition explores the diversity of archival records held by and hosted by Bridwell Library.

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