The Jenks Memorial Collection of Adventual Materials
The Jenks Memorial Collection was assembled over many years by Orrin Roe Jenks, the seventh president (1911-33) of what is today Aurora University. It is very likely that many materials in this collection were given to Mendota College (the name of the college before it moved to Aurora, Illinois in1912) in the 1890s / 1900s to help in the educating of Advent Christian ministers. These materials would have moved with the school to Aurora. And certainly many materials have been added to the collection through the efforts of various curators and others. However, it was President Jenks who initiated the active collection of materials and acquired some of the collection’s rarest and most unique items (like the 800-letter correspondence of William Miller). Also, it was President Jenks who began the systematic organization of the collection so that its materials could be easily accessed by researchers. This being the case, on January 5, 1956, five years after his death and in recognition of his many years of labor collecting, arranging, and preserving these materials, the collection was named in his honor as a memorial to him — the Jenks Memorial Collection of Adventual Materials.
The Jenks Memorial Collection of Adventual Materials collects, preserves, makes accessible, and interprets materials concerning the Millerite Movement (which preached the imminent return of Jesus Christ to earth [especially his return in 1843-44], based on the biblical interpretation of William Miller [1782-1849]), as well as materials concerning early Adventism and the Advent Christian denomination (one of six denominations to come out of the Millerite movement).