Historical museum exhibit features sisters, college
In celebration of 175 years, the Sisters of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana, and Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC) have created an exhibit which is currently on display at the Vigo County Historical Museum.
The exhibit features various artifacts from the sisters and the college, books and documents related to the history, photographs and more, including a poster which depicts the different types of habits sisters have worn throughout the years, and a map featuring the sisters and their ministries.
It totals three display cabinets, one focusing on the college, another on Saint Mother Theodore Guerin and the final on the Sisters of Providence, as well as the poster.
The joint effort exhibit will be on display at the museum indefinitely.
Sisters of Providence archivist Sister Mary Ryan said the exhibit was put together by herself, SMWC archivist Alice Quinlan and SMWC Associate Professor of Graphic Design Rebecca Andrews. During the summer, SMWC student Jessica Claycomb also helped with the project.
“It was fun to work with them,” Sister Mary said. “We really collaborated. It was fun for the college and Congregation to work together.”
Andrews echoed Sister Mary’s sentiments.
“I really enjoyed working on the project, as I have a great interest not only in the college’s history, but that of the sisters,” she said. “It was a wonderful opportunity to work with and learn more from Sister Mary and Alice.”
Sister Mary said planning for the exhibit began in early 2014. It took approximately one week to put the display together.
“It really portrays our history,” she said. “We tried to highlight our ministries from 1840 to the present time. Saint Mother Theodore Guerin was doing things in the 1840s that we try to do to this day.”
“It’s amazing how many ways the sisters have impacted the area,” Andrews added. “I hope the map makes visitors to the museum realize the role they have played in education, social justice, health care and spirituality through the years.”
The museum is located at 1411 S. 6th St., Terre Haute. Official hours are 1 to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Sunday. In addition, the museum will be closed through the month of January.
About the Sisters of Providence
The Sisters of Providence, a congregation of 214 women religious, with 300 Providence Associates, collaborate with others to create a more just and hope-filled world through prayer, education, service and advocacy. The Sisters of Providence have their motherhouse at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, located just northwest of downtown Terre Haute, Ind., which is now listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Saint Mother Theodore Guerin founded the Sisters of Providence at Saint Mary-of-the-Woods in 1840. Today, Sisters of Providence minister in 13 states, the District of Columbia and Asia, through works of love, mercy and justice. More information about the Sisters of Providence and their ministries can be found at SistersofProvidence.org.