President’s Message

By: Percy C. Madeira, Jr.

Originally Published in 1942

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ON this occasion when The University Museum reviews its work for the year, I want to express my appreciation of the loyalty shown during the reorganization of the Museum: to the members who have generously indicated their belief in our work by continuing to help us; to the Board of Managers who take time from their demanding days to help guide us on our course; to the President, Provost, Administrative Officers, and Faculty of the University for their understanding of our problems; and to the members of the Museum staff, curatorial, administrative, and maintenance, for their unflagging work and cooperation.

In time of war and national stress we should dedicate our every effort to our great offensive in order that the democratic tradition may be maintained in victorious peace and economic equilibrium. Yet in this offensive we must likewise realize that those public services which we have developed so lavishly in comparison with other nations for the benefit of man, services like museums, hospitals, clinics, education, both primary and higher, have always been administered and carried on by people who brought to them in times of peace the same sense of dedication and public service that the great mass of our population is bringing to our present war effort.

Our policy in the Museum is to maintain and expand our services to the community in a qualitative sense, since we realize keenly that private services must go in order to win this war. In the past year and in the years to come our efforts will be to render our collections more fruitful and intelligible to the community at large, to bring to the children, that generation which inherits the bad debts of their fathers, a better appreciation and faith in the achievements of human life and spirit over the centuries and millennia of the past. This heavy burden rests on our Department of Education. On the curatorial staff falls the task of maintaining and adding to our collections, of interpreting them both in terms of the technical content of research and the social interests of our laity. Then there is that constant effort on the part of the maintenance staff to keep the Museum an inviting and effective place to visit and to study, and we are daily finding more efficient and less expensive means of keeping the building and its organization going.

I want you to realize that the Museum plans no contraction or retrenchment in the quality of its services. Just as we are guardians of the treasures of past civilizations, so also we shall cultivate and keep alive for the use of this and succeeding generations those things for which men are sacrificing their lives and their property today.

Lastly, I am confident that the same fine loyalty and help from all parties interested in the Museum will continue in the future, just as in the past.


Cite This Article

Jr., Percy C. Madeira,. "President’s Message." Museum Bulletin IX, no. 4 (June, 1942): 3-4. Accessed July 15, 2024.

This digitized article is presented here as a historical reference and may not reflect the current views of the Penn Museum.

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