IMLS American Heritage Grant Provides Conservation Treatment for Vestry Minutes, 1760-1784.

October 18, 2009

Christ Church, Philadelphia and the Christ Church Preservation Trust are proud to announce that they have been awarded a $3000 American Heritage grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to have the Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts provide conservation treatment for volume 2 of the Church’s vestry minutes. These minutes which span the years from 1760-1784, reflect the tensions and concerns of the congregation during a time when Philadelphia served as the pivotal geographic location for the emerging United States of America. Christ Church played a key role in this drama. Delegates to the Continental Congress frequently worshipped at Christ Church and the Church’s rector, the Reverend Jacob Duché, served as the chaplain to the Congress. In 1776 the Vestry directed the Rev. Duche to eliminate the references to the King and Royal Family from the Book of Common Prayer, an act of treason which would come back to haunt the Rev. Duche.

Christ Church was one of 53 organizations who received funding to save key pieces of American history. IMLS director, Dr. Anne-Imelda M. Radice, spoke of the significance of these grants:

“With these awards, communities will be able to rescue exceptional objects that link their pasts to their futures. This grant program is an important part of IMLS’s Connecting to Collections: A Call to Action, a multi-year, multi-pronged initiative to protect our national treasures.”

To see the on-line catalog entry for this volume with an image of the vestry’s directive, please visit this link