About this Project


“College Misericordia students at Dallas trolley station,” circa 1930. RG 905. Sister Mary Carmel McGarigle University Archives, Misericordia University, Dallas, PA.

Nearly one hundred years ago, the first students at College Misericordia crossed the threshold of what is now Mercy Hall.  The students entering in the fall of 1924 semester had already experienced much in their young lives.  Born just after the turn of the 20th century, those young women were only in elementary school when the Great War began in Europe. They likely saw their brothers, fathers, cousins, and neighbors get drafted or volunteer to fight overseas. At home, schools, theatres, and restaurants closed in an attempt to curb the 1918 influenza outbreak. The 1920s brought substantial social changes, particularly for women. The first Misericordia students’ lives were forever changed by these far-reaching events.

History is also in the making in 2020. We have an incredible opportunity to reflect upon our current situation and preserve these experiences for posterity.

A joint collaboration between the Sister Mary Carmel McGarigle University Archives, the History Program, and the University Honors Program, this project brings together the creation of an important archive of experiences as well as a supplementary speaker series on the role of historians during times of crisis. This project aims to collect, preserve, and make publicly accessible materials created by the Misericordia University community that document their experiences during the global Covid-19 pandemic. Submissions may include a variety of forms and genres–such as letters, personal reflections, born-digital artwork, oral histories, blog or diary entries, social media posts, photographs, video/audio. With the purpose of serving the mission of the Sister Mary Carmel McGarigle University Archives–to collect and preserve the history and culture of Misericordia University–this project contributes to Misericordia and Northeastern Pennsylvania’s long history of focusing on medicine and educating students in health sciences professions.


MU admin building

Misericordia University. “Administration Building at College Misericordia,” after 1932. RG905. Sister Mary Carmel McGarigle University Archives, Misericordia University, Dallas, PA.


L-R: Ashleigh Rose, Sara Shields, Kim George, Teresa Davis, Kendall Williams, Lauren Butera

This website was developed by the students in Dr. Jennifer Black’s “Introduction to Public History” class during the Fall 2020 semester. They include Lauren Butera, Teresa Davis, Kimberly George, Sara Shields, and Kendall Williams. Ashleigh Rose provided important support, serving as a project manager coordinating our marketing of this project to the broader campus community. We would like to thank the Service by Design Club, especially Sierra Crane, Jack Malone, Adam Meyers, and Iryna Vanderbeek, for their work on the publicity materials for the project and webinars. Finally, this project would not have been possible without the assistance and support of Maureen Cech (University Archivist), Rachel Urbanowicz (Asst. Prof. of Mass Communications and Design), Heidi Manning (Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences), Brian Carso (Assoc. Prof. of History and Government), and Michelle Donato (Administrative Asst. for the College of Arts & Sciences).