District 5 A.A.

Area 58 - Central Oregon

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Archives Committee


“We are trying to build up extensive records which will be of value to a future historian... It is highly important that the factual material is placed in our files in such a way that there can be no substantial distortion... We want to keep enlarging on this idea for the sake of the full-length history to come...” - Bill W., 1957
 - Purpose (from Area 58 guidelines)

“Whenever a society or civilization perishes there is always one condition present; they forgot where they came from.”  - Carl Sandberg

Like any other AA service, the primary purpose of those involved in archives is to carry the message of Alcoholics Anonymous.  It is more than a mere custodial activity; it is the means by which we collect preserve and share the rich and meaningful heritage of our fellowship.  It is by the collection and sharing of these historical elements that our collective gratitude for Alcoholics Anonymous is deepened.

AA members have a responsibility to gather and take good care of the fellowship’s historical documents and memorabilia.  Correspondence, records, photographs, newspaper and magazine articles from the past need be collected, preserved, and made available for the guidance and research of AA members and others (researchers, historians, and scholars from various disciplines) – for now and for generations yet to come.
Who we are

The Archives Committee (ARC) is responsible for all archived materials belonging to District 5, and development of policies and procedures for doing this important work.  The ARC provides oversight for the District Archivist and assists with developing motions (related to archives) requiring District Committee approval.  Examples of archives motions: archival preservation materials needed in excess of the current budget, or to provide other budgetary resources (e.g. increased repository rent).

Due to the special nature of preservation duties and repository maintenance, it may be necessary to involve committee members who may not be alcoholic but have special expertise applicable to archives.  Such non-AA friends would be familiar with our Primary Purpose and AA Traditions.

What we do:
    ▪    Receive donated archive materials
    ▪    Determine ownership/copyrights for donations
    ▪    Hold and preserve donations
    ▪    Create oral histories of District “long-timers”
    ▪    Maintain the physical District Repository and indexes to archive materials
    ▪    Provide access to materials as determined by current district policy, and in keeping with AA Traditions
    ▪    Serve as a resource for District Groups and members
    ▪    Provide for deaccession of archives materials as determined by current district policy

How you can help:
    ▪    Nominate “long-timers” to have their story recorded
    ▪    Develop the history of your Home Group (we can help)
    ▪    Donate archive materials to the District Repository
    ▪    Volunteer for the Archives Steering Committee
    ▪    Assist the District Archives Chair with sorting and preservation
    ▪    Help us get the word out with Archives presentation/display

Archives Committee Resources

A.A. Guidelines from General Service Office (GSO) for Archives

A.A. Guidelines are compiled from the shared experience of A.A. members in various service areas. They also reflect guidance given through the Twelve Traditions and the General Service Conference (U.S. and Canada). The purpose of these Guidelines is to assist in reaching an informed group conscience.

Contact District 5 Archives Committee Chair       

District 5 Archives Committee Chair
P. O. Box 7241
Bend, OR 97708

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