BKBB Archives Intern Interview: Matty Marrow | Presbyterian Historical Society

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BKBB Archives Intern Interview: Matty Marrow

April 4, 2023

In February, PHS welcomed BKBB Archives Intern Matty Marrow. Read the interview below to hear about Matty's experience at the Presbyterian Historical Society and click here for their full reflection.

What initially interested you in an internship at the Presbyterian Historical Society?
M: I was initially interested because I grew up Presbyterian, love history, and thought that it was a great opportunity to learn more about archives because of my very minimal knowledge of them.

What are some of the projects you worked on during your internship?
M: I worked a lot on the African American History timeline. Through that experience, I picked a couple big topics to write blog posts about and created a church bulletin insert.

What did you find surprising about working at an archive?
M: I’m most surprised at the processes that go on behind the scenes. I’ve never really thought too hard about how researchers get their information, but it was so cool to see in action all that has to happen before a researcher ever sits down with a box of records. 

Spring 2023 BKBB Archives Intern Matty Marrow (right) with their internship supervisor, Reference and Outreach Archivist Sonia Prescott (left).  

What did you find challenging about the experience?
M: The most challenging thing would the self-direction. I had to really work on managing my own time and deciding what to work on, for how long, etc. This was really helpful ultimately though, as I now have a better idea of how long I need for certain projects and what my abilities are. I also had a ton of freedom in choosing what I would work on and again, it was challenging (but fun!) to narrow down what I would research and work on.

How does your experience at the Presbyterian Historical Society help support your professional or educational goals?
M: Being able to take all the things I have worked on with me and have tangible proof of my abilities is really invaluable in today's world. Along with that, I have built some great connections with many of the people who work here and I’m excited to continue to build those connections and let them watch me grow in this field! It also has really helped me to understand more of my options in the history and archives fields. Going into this I didn’t really know what I could even do in an archive or how they worked. Now, I’m looking more seriously at a future in archival or library work. I also have learned just how much I enjoy research and writing about the things that interest me!

Matty in the archives.

How would you describe your internship to a confirmation class at the church you attended growing up?
M: I would describe it as an opportunity to learn more about what got the Church to where it is now. It’s interesting to look at the future of the Church through its past. That was something that I never really thought of when I was going through confirmation and exploring what being Presbyterian is.

How do you think/hope Presbyterians should engage with their history?
M: In general, I don’t think a lot of Presbyterians interact with their history much, if at all. My hope is that Presbyterians take their history into account and realize that there is a history to be studied and taught.

Please share any additional reflections about your time at PHS!
M: I literally loved being at PHS. The worst part and my only complaint is that my internship is over.