Delegate’s Corner 2021

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

Yesterday allows us to take care of today and today allows us to prepare for tomorrow.

Whenever a society or civilization perishes there is always one condition present; they forgot where they came from. — Carl Sandburg

It is truly amazing how I came to A.A. meetings for several years sat next to a few members, exchanged pleasantries and never truly knew them.

My sponsor and I were traveling to Irma to visit friends and celebrate birthdays. We invited a long timer from another group who had visited our group many times over the years. One whom we exchanged pleasantries with many times. The member spoke of meetings years ago in a place called Hurstwood hall, just outside of Sherwood Park.

The only running water came in thru the roof. They would bring water to every meeting to have on hand for the next meeting to make coffee. They would bring newcomers and share their experiences, nourish and teach these newbies the program of Alcoholics Anonymous. How the group managed to move into Sherwood Park and have heat and running water and more members. How other groups developed and our message grew as more found sobriety. My sponsor and I received more than 2 hours of history on our District, history that we discovered had never been documented.

Shortly after an Archives representative was elected for our group. Then the District elected an Archives Chair. Both then attended the North America Archives conference being held in Winnipeg that year.

Like any other A.A.  service,  the  primary  purpose  of  those  involved  in  archival  work  is  to  carry  the  message  of  Alcoholics  Anonymous.  Archives service is more  than mere custodial  activity, it is the means by which we collect, preserve, and share the rich and meaningful heritage of our Fellowship. It is by the collection and sharing of these important historical elements that our collective gratitude for Alcoholics Anonymous is deepened.

We are currently staying sober and carrying the message in a time which may never be repeated again. We are coming together for the greater good of all. The feeling of having shared in a common peril is one element in the cement which binds us.

The opportunity to capture and archive these moments, successes, triumphs and struggles are vital. The movement to online functions, meetings, Assemblies and our General Service Conference are truly amazing. We of Alcoholics Anonymous are a resilient lot, whom given the opportunity will cease the moment through Unity, to be there for our fellow members and those yet to come.

I would encourage you to work with your members to Archive your Groups history, whether its 2 members or 200. It is the spirit of participation, no contribution toward carrying and preserving the message can be too small. Bill W. spoke about our collective obligation to support A.A. Services, one of these being our Archives.

Everything you need to get started can be found in our “Archives Workbook,” (M-44I).


Our A.A. Guidelines on Archives (MG-17) states:

A.A.  members  have  a  responsibility  to  gather  and  care  for  the  Fellowship’s historical documents and memorabilia. Correspondence, records,  minutes,  reports,  photographs,  newspaper  and  magazine  articles from the past and the present should be collected, preserved, and made available for the guidance and research of A.A. members and others (researchers, historians, and scholars from various disciplines) — for now and for generations to come.

Courage and Vigilance are the cornerstones of tomorrow.  We need to ensure courage as A.A. unity cannot automatically preserve itself. Like personal recovery, we shall always have to work to maintain it.  Here, too, we surely need honesty, humility, openmindedness, unselfishness, and above all—vigilance. So we who are older in A.A. beg you who are newer to ponder carefully the experiences we have already had of trying to work and live together.  With vigilance, we need to make a difference today, so those to come can make a difference tomorrow.


Your Trusted Servant,

Brad F.


Panel 70

(please see below)




The  mission  of  the  Alcoholics  Anonymous  General  Service  Office  Archives  is  to  document  permanently  the  work  of  Alcoholics  Anonymous,  to  make  the  history  of  the  organization  accessible  to  A.A.  members  and  other  researchers,  and  to  provide  a  context  for  understanding A.A.’s progression, principles and traditions.



Consistent  with  A.A.’s  primary  purpose  of  maintaining  our  sobriety  and  helping  other  alcoholics  achieve  recovery,  the  Archives  of  Alcoholics Anonymous will:

•  Receive,  classify,  and  index  all  relevant  material,  such  as  administrative  files  and  records,  correspondence,  and  literary  works  and  artifacts  considered  to  have  historical  importance  to  Alcoholics  Anonymous.

• Hold and preserve such material.

•  Provide  access  to  these  materials,  as  determined  by  the  archivist  in consultation with the trustees’ Archives Committee, to members of Alcoholics Anonymous and to others who may have a valid need to review such material, contingent upon a commitment to preserve the anonymity of our members.

• Serve as a resource and laboratory to stimulate and nourish learning.

•  Provide  information  services  to  assist  the  operations  of  Alcoholics  Anonymous.

•  Promote  knowledge  and  understanding  of  the  origins,  goals  and  programs of Alcoholics Anonymous.



For a more detailed discussion of archival matters, please review the

“Archives Workbook,” (M-44I) / Our A.A. Guidelines on Archives (MG-17)

available from G.S.O or your local central office and your

 Area 78 Literature Committee Chair: Neil P.

For answers to any specific questions, and lists of additional resources, contact your G.S.O. Archives at or 212-870-3400.

Other valuable information is available at and your

 Area 78 Archives Committee Chair: Catherine P.


PS: Our Area 78 Archivist, Tim H. is currently compiling archival material towards the consideration of a book on The History of Area 78.