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The SUM in Nigeria, The Cameroons, Chad, Sudan and Other African Territories

Part 3: Newsletters, 1940-1989, Publications and Annual Reports, 1908-1979

This part consists of three distinct sections:

Newsletters, 1940-1989, providing SUM home news and information on missions in Northern Nigeria and Sudan, covering a wide range of different topics, from education to medical work (the two central themes of SUM work) to the problems of civil war, the destruction of property and guerrilla activity, or the establishment of new training centres, the progress of welfare initiatives and the creation of native churches. 

Publications, comprising books, pamphlets and a set of papers in the archive entitled “History”. These include various volumes documenting the history and work of the SUM and its missionaries, for example:

  • The Bridge Builder (a biography of W M Bristow).
  • Dawn over Gwoza (a description of the medical work in Gwoza).
  • Go Ye and Cleanse (a record of work carried out among lepers).
  • Go Ye and Teach (the story of Gindiri Training School in Nigeria).
  • A Growing Church (the growth of the SUM).
  • Instead of the Thorn (the story of the Faith and Farm project).
  • Magic or Medicine (a history of Vom Hospital).

There are descriptions of the life and customs of local tribes in Northern Nigeria and Sudan, for instance The Birom, Aflame for God (about a cannibal tribe).  There are short stories for children about SUM missionaries, their work and various indigenous tribes, for example Glimpses of the Sudan, A Hunter at Heart, and Joel.

The set of papers collated as the “History” includes details on the civil war in Nigeria, the diaries and notebooks of H G Farrant, notes on the Freed Slaves Home, maps, SUM Golden Jubilee papers and short missionary memoirs. An item of great interest is J Lowry Maxwell’s diary for the early years of the SUM.

Annual Reports which are sub-divided into four different categories of material:

  • Annual Bound Reports and Reviews, 1908-1916.
  • SUM Annual Branch Reports, 1940-1979, from Britain, Australia and
    New Zealand, Canada, Denmark, Norway, South Africa and Switzerland.
  • Annual and Monthly Station Reports and Early Histories.

  • Gwoza Log Books, 1956-1972.
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