Not only did he keep bulletins and pictures and Sunday schoolbooklets, but McGoings also retained invitations and postcards hereceived.

"He would go to banquets and save all of his little stubs," saidDuPree.

A search through McGoings' materials "helped tremendously" whenDuPree was trying to trace the life of Lawson, who introduced choirs andneckties as worship and fashion statements among Oneness Pentecostalsbefore his death in 1961.

"We could piece when Lawson traveled overseas because he would get aChristmas card from him," said DuPree. "That's really something wehadn't been able to do."

DuPree's collection on African-American Pentecostals at theSchomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York was boostedby contributions from McGoings, culled from what she said was a"basement-full" of materials. She said other authors have interviewedMcGoings on black Pentecostalism and at least eight doctoraldissertations of Howard students credit him.

McGoings said some of the church directories he collected listedmembers and pastors, helping researchers track the starts and splits ofPentecostal groups.

"That would tell them who was with so-and-so," he said. "Thepreachers have gone from organization to organization."

McGoings, who moved into a senior-citizen housing complex last fall,has given away much of his collection now, but retains a few mementos,including booklets detailing Lawson's life. A former waiter-in-chargeand steward for Baltimore & Ohio Railroad and Amtrak, he also collectedschedules, pens and pencils from a variety of railways before he retiredin 1980.

Diana Lachatanere, curator of the Schomburg Center's manuscripts,archives and rare books division, said collectors like McGoings can makea great contribution, especially concerning ephemeral materials. Oftensuch items get tossed out by children who don't know how precious theywere to the elders that preceded them or to the scholars who live afterthem, she said.

"It is invaluable because that might be the only piece of thispamphlet or this flier or this sermon that has lasted," saidLachatanere.

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