Curia Corner — Archives awareness and beyond, a year of #tbt

Staying focused while working on an archival project? Not one of my strong suits. Most of the time, that is how “Throwback Thursday” (#tbt) on social media comes into fruition — a photo here, a random photo there.

For those of you who don’t have Facebook or aren’t on social media, the diocesan archives have published a “Throwback Thursday” photo every week for the past year. Here are some highlights:

Your favorites (or most likes on Facebook) — the pics of Fr. Gerald Scherer and his mining photos with his father looking at ‘Jerry’ from the foot of the Scherer Coal Mine in Firesteel; Fr. Scherer’s column; building pics of cathedral in the 1960s; the picture of nativity scene with an added shepherd and a young Fr. Bryan Sorenson. Lisa going through her mother’s attic and donating the First Holy Communion class photos; St. Bart Church in Glad Valley sparked interest …

(Right) A #tbt post from July 2018. Watch for a new post every Thursday on social media. Find the diocese at:
@rapidcitydiorc (Instagram and Twitter)

There was also interest in the relics, published in March West River Catholic, ranging from 1st class to 3rd class of the archives, amidst the celebration of the heart of St. John Vianney. A small prayer group from one of the Rapid City parishes would like to venerate these relics. Project challenge accepted. Stay tuned for the details!

Any historical stories and photos are also well liked — like the priceless Timber Lake photo trading the plow for the bow and arrow (circa unknown).

Unidentified photos — I have posted and asked for your help in identifying pictures, and an original aerial shot of St. Martins Monastery and the ‘circle track’ that was in question was indeed a track used by the schools for sporting events of St. Martin school in the early 1970s.

My favorites — The Advent, Christmas photo of the adorable girl in her native regalia, yet to be identified; ‘running’ into Archbishop Cupich in Chicago at a conference; construction pics of cathedral; a picture of nativity scene with an added shepherd; artifacts such as St. Brigid’s cross, the surprise donation of the stained glass work of art prairie church and other artifacts that find their way to the diocesan archives. How cute was the photo of a 1920s married couple published in February? Who could forget the memory of driving by the bishop’s house on West Blvd and seeing his gigantic (in the eyes of a 7-year-old) nativity scene!

We Remember — Photos of Fr. Gerald Sherer and his 100th heavenly birthday, Msgr. W. O’Connell, Fr. Cower; Msgr. Walsh; those who perished in the 1972 Rapid City flood including Fr. Francis Collins, SJ; Fr. Bob Baden and our clergy and staff whom we thanked for service in our military; Fr. John Francis McKearney and his great-nephew’s visit to our archives for genealogical research.
But what about upcoming posts, you ask? I’ve got them ready. They will be featuring Servant of God Nicholas Black Elk, the Wall parish window that has traveled the world, oldest recordist voice on YouTube, a curly haired priest birthday photo and much more.

I am on to new discoveries, unexpected archival finds, mystery photos, more pics of our clergy in their younger days, more accounts of original church photos. Want more preservation tips? What is your favorite part of our diocesan history? What would you like to see published? Email your thoughts, ideas, and comments to