This collection of items were owned by the Veenker family while they worked as missionaries in Nigeria between 1940 - 1968. The book entitled "While I Still Remember" by Lois Veenker was written in 1990-1991 (2018.68.4) and covers recollections of the family's time there such as their missionary work, friendships formed, raising children, to more detailed stories on disease and illness they experienced such as malaria to finding babysitters, snakebites, and food preparation. The items donated were stored in a suitcase (2018.68.25) and are comprised of cultural items from West Africa such as gifts, souvenirs, and missionary literature. The literature came from the New York-based organization Sudan Interior Mission who the family was employed by. This rich and personal collection captures the experience of missionaries working and raising their family in Africa in the mid-twentieth century.
Lois Veenker Lois Veenker was a Michigan missionary who worked and lived with her husband Ray Veenker in Nigeria. The two were married in Miango in 1942 and had four daughters Ramona Wiley, Miriam Samuels, Lila Veenker, and Karen Hayes. They lived in the country until 1968 before returning to the United States to settle in Iowa.