Although the archive of text generated by a persistent conversation (i.e. newsgroup, mailing list, recorded chat, etc.) is searchable, it is not very expressive of the underlying social patterns. In this paper we will discuss the design of graphical interfaces that reveal the social structure of the conversation by visualizing patterns such as bursts of activity, the arrival of new members, or the evolution of conversational topics. Our focus is on two projects: Chat Circles, a graphical interface for synchronous conversation and Loom, a visualization of threaded discussion. Through these examples we will explore key issues in the generation, design and use of graphical interfaces for persistent conversations.