How Does COVID-19 Affect You?

Posted by Scott on April 15, 2020

(written by Jenny DeRocher, Archives staff)

The La Crosse Public Library Archives & Local History Department (LPLA) actively collects papers, records, photographs, and materials from local community members to document the history of La Crosse. This means that LPLA collects aged materials, but we also work to collect in response to current events, people, and agencies to document today’s world for future generations. We do this so our collection reflects the La Crosse community that we serve. As archivists, this is our role in our community.

In an attempt to capture the current atmosphere in La Crosse during the ongoing public health crisis due to the spread of COVID-19, the LPLA is asking you, our community members, to share your stories and add your voice to our historical record. We want as wide of participation as possible: essential workers at gas stations, grocery stores, healthcare facilities, the Post Office, etc.; people who worked or voted at the April 7 election; local business owners; students; people who have temporarily lost jobs; parents and their kids. We want everyone. 

To gather your stories, we made a Google Forms in English, Hmoob, and Spanish, which you can access by clicking the appropriate graphic below:





We invite you to use this activity cathartically, or for documentation purposes; it is up to you. Answer as many or as few questions as you would like—only the last four (short) questions are required for submitting. The other questions are presented as writing prompts to stimulate reflection. We invite a variety of writers: those who enjoy bullet points and those who share in paragraphs. You do not have to identify yourself, it can be completely anonymous if you wish.

Additionally (or alternatively), Archives staff encourages you to keep diaries and journals during this time. Write letters to yourself. Create documents that will last for our future. And later, you can consider donating a copy to the Archives.

We plan to keep collecting submissions as the pandemic continues. To find out about accessing this collection for future research, check out the finding aid.

If you have photographs, records, or other materials relating to COVID-19 and are interesting in donating them to the LPLA, please contact us at or by calling (608) 789-7136.