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Living History: A Mission Santa Barbara Community Archive

Queen Elizabeth standing over a table of books at the library with 4 other people around her.
A man sits at a table with a book and can be seen from the side in full.
A black and white image of the inside of the archive library.
A black and white image of Old Mission Santa Barbara from 1949 with fireworks above it.

Every one of us is living through history right now. As we all move forward individually, as families, and as a community, our responses and experiences are shaping how this moment will be perceived in the future. To better record and remember the events of this historic time, the Mission Santa Barbara community is inviting everyone to come together and share their stories, experiences, and reflections.

Living History: A Mission Santa Barbara Community Archive is a project designed to collect, preserve, and record individual experiences in this moment. We invite you to join us in this endeavor by responding directly to the prompts below, sharing your own reflections and stories, and/or by uploading photographs, artwork, journal entries, etc. We will incorporate your materials into this community-created collection, which will be maintained and curated by archivists of the Santa Bárbara Mission Archive-Library. These materials will become part of the historical record that will provide future generations with insight into the events we are all experiencing now, together. Just as each one of us, individually, is making history in this moment, this archive will record and preserve our shared history.

The Mission Santa Barbara community is made up of many different entities. There is Old Mission Santa Barbara itself, as well as the community of Franciscan Friars that lives at the Mission; the Novitiate of novices studying and training to become Friars; the Saint Barbara parish; and the Santa Bárbara Mission Archive-Library.




PLEASE NOTE: The above information is being gathered solely for archival purposes and will only be used internally.

We created this content before the events of the last few weeks. We will update this to include events related to racial injustice in our country as soon as possible.


We are all currently struggling with the crisis associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. Please share with us your reflections and stories about your experiences over the last few months dealing with the challenges of the pandemic. Feel free to respond to any of the following prompts if you would like, but we welcome whatever you would like to share...

     What have been the hardest or most drastic changes you've seen in your town and community? • Have you witnessed acts of human kindness through this crisis? • How have you been staying connected with family and friends while staying at home? • Have you celebrated any special events, such as holidays, birthdays, or anniversaries, and how did you celebrate differently at this time than in at past celebrations? • Are there any changes you have made to your daily routine that you would like to continue after the pandemic?

With which ethnicity/race do you identify?
What is your age range?
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Black Lives Matter & Racial Injustice Movements

In the last month, many across our country have united together against racial injustice as the result of the tragic deaths of George Floyd, along with Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and countless others. As we are living through this history, please share with us your experiences and reflections about what you have seen, what you have learned, or your participation over the last few weeks in witnessing various events or programs organized by those seeking racial equality. Feel free to respond to any of the following prompts if you would like, but we welcome whatever you would like to share.

         How have you been involved with the various movements - peaceful protesting, political involvement, donations? • What examples of acts of human kindness have you witnessed throughout the last few weeks? • What types of conversations have you had with friends and family during this time? • Have you found any organizations or resources to be especially informative or supportive during this time?

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I agree that my submission may be shared in whole or in part on social media and online as part of a future digital exhibit.

By clicking "Submit," I acknowledge that I am donating my story and/or submissions to the Santa Bárbara Mission-Archive Library, and I am doing so without restrictions.

Your content has been submitted.

Thank you!

SBMAL is open to researchers by appointment only.
NEW HOURS for 2024! Research hours are now available on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, 10:00am to 4:00pm.

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