Throughout recorded history there have been events, occurrences and happenings that for better or worse change the narrative of humans and how they conduct their lives. This is true in countless written accounts of wars, natural disasters, political upheavals, pestilence and disease. During most of these historical, life-altering events, the realities and grim truths were gleaned from firsthand accounts from average citizens who were surviving day to day.
The COVID-19 Pandemic is one of these historical events that will no doubt cause mankind to adopt a “new normal” moving forward. People have been forced to stop living the lives they were used to – working, shopping, worshipping, playing sports and freedoms that until now had been taken for granted.
The Union Museum of History and Art feels that the way in which the citizens of Farmerville and Union Parish are coping with this pandemic should be remembered in detail for future generations. “These are extraordinary times with extraordinary responses to this unseen foe,” said Jean Jones, Director of the museum, “and this pandemic should be remembered in detail for future generations.”
What types of remembrances is the museum looking for? Think about how you might have responded to the virus and the quarantine. Did you take action and if so, what did you do? Did you hunker down and not go out at all? How did this affect you mentally? Have you performed acts of neighborly service? What have you been thinking and feeling during this time… fear? Indifference? Anxiety? Annoyance? Have you or any of your family been personally affected by COVID-19? Writing down these events, thoughts and feelings will not only be therapeutic, but preserve this time in history for future citizens of Union Parish. “Writing skill is not necessary,” said Jones, “just authentic stories and thoughts are all that is needed.” The museum is seeking submissions in the form of writings, photographs and drawings from both adults and youth. Submissions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to 211 N Main St., Farmerville.
Submissions will be accepted for the foreseeable future. “We want people to submit their on-going thoughts as this pandemic event continues,” said Jones. “Capture those thoughts and experiences now while they are fresh on your mind!” Citizens are encouraged to submit writings and photos as often as they wish. The more experiences and feelings that are documented, the more future generations will benefit.
The finished project will be a daily journal of the pandemic progression across Union Parish and the state of Louisiana. When this unprecedented time in history is over and people return to what will be the new normal, the finished journal will be available to the public both as a printed book and online in digital format. Copies of the journal will also be kept in the museum archives and in local libraries. If anyone needs assistance in submitting their items, please call Jones at 318-348-2005.