Planning a visit to
WELS Archives & Visitor Center
The Visitor Center
In 2016, WELS hired its first official synod archivist and began moving the synod archives from Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, Mequon, Wis., to a purpose-built archival space, designed to preserve and organize historical WELS documents, books, and artifacts at the WELS Center for Mission and Ministry, Waukesha, Wis.
In conjunction with the archives, a visitor’s center was built to help show the history and mission of WELS. The visitor center includes a visual timeline of WELS’ history as well as informational kiosks on areas of ministry. Materials from the archives also are on display.
Guests will be shown a video highlighting WELS’ ministry and receive a tour of the Center for Mission and Ministry.
The visitor center is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Closed on holidays)
Use our online form to request a date and time for your visit to the WELS Center for Mission and Ministry.
Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod
The WELS archives are the official repository for records of historical value created by and about WELS, its congregations and called workers, and related parasynodical organizations and institutions. Its mission is to offer a useful information service to WELS called workers and congregations.
Preserve your congregation’s history
The synod archives is here to support your congregation by preserving and maintaining not only the synod history, but also the history of our WELS congregations. This is possible with the help of your donated materials including:
- Church histories
- Anniversary bulletins
- Installation bulletins
- Dedication service bulletins
- Other materials related to your congregation’s history
Congregations can send copies of these items to be preserved and added to the collection. These materials will be useful to future researchers as they provide a great insight into the congregations that make up our synod.
The landscape of our synod is always changing, and your congregation may be experiencing milestones and changes. To help future generations understand our church’s history, please donate your records of historical value which include:
- Meeting minutes and reports from all committees, councils, and organizations within your church
- Photographs, scrapbooks, and other visuals of your congregation’s history
- Book of Sacred Acts
- Church Histories
- Bulletins: from installations, dedications, anniversary services, and other special events
- Church constitutions, bylaws, and other charter documents
- Newsletters and other church wide communications
Contact the WELS Archivist to learn more about preserving your congregation’s history or to conduct research.