Digital North Carolina Blog

Digital North Carolina Blog

This blog is maintained by the staff of the North Carolina Digital Heritage Center and features highlights from the collections at DigitalNC, an online library of primary sources from institutions across North Carolina.

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Viewing entries posted in September 2017


New Additions to Rockingham County Legacy Exhibit Incude Garden Club Yearbooks, Scrapbooks, and More

The cover of Bicentennial: North Carolina History Volume 1

The Stoneville Garden Club song printed in the 1952-1953 garden club yearbook

The newest batch of materials from our partner Rockingham County Public Library includes 3 scrapbooks, over 20 garden club yearbooks, 3 school yearbooks, and more. The scrapbooks are comprised of news clippings pertaining to the National Bicentennial Celebration of North Carolina Independence that took place from 1975-1976. Each volume collects articles chronologically in the order that they were published.

The garden club yearbooks document the Stoneville Garden Club from 1937-1999. These yearbooks feature lists of the year’s officers, committees, programs, and the club’s constitution. The yearbooks also feature the club’s song which starts “Plant a Shrub, a Flower, a Tree!” and decorative covers in the club’s colors–pink and green.

The cover of the 1937 club yearbook

Also included in this batch are the 1939 and  1940 editions of The Pilot by Leaksville High School and the 1944 edition of The Crest by Draper High School.

To see all of the materials in the Rockingham County Legacy exhibit, visit the exhibit’s homepage. To learn more about Rockingham County Public Library visit their partner page or take a look at their website.


New Batch of Q-notes Traces LGBT Issues from 1997-2004

Youngsters at Charlotte Pride 2002 as seen in the May 25, 2002 issue of Q-notes

More issues of the newspaper Q-notes, provided by our partner the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, are now up on DigitalNC. These new issues cover the years 1997-2004 and join previously digitized issues from 1986-1996.

Q-notes is a newspaper that serves the LGBT community of Charlotte as well as the greater LGBT community in the state of North Carolina. Over the years that have been digitized, Q-notes grew as a publication from an 8 page newspaper published once a month to a 40 page paper published every two weeks. Currently Q-notes is published both online and in print form.

With the expansion of the publication, Q-notes was able to tackle more content ranging from coverage of local events, news stories, and advertisements to national and international news stories and features. The late ’90s and early ’00s was a time of many changes for the United Sates LGBT community, and Q-notes articles reported on the changing attitudes and experiences surrounding LGBT culture.

Headline from the January 20, 2001 issue of Q-notes

Q-notes was able to report many firsts. The first legal same-sex wedding in Canada was held in 2001, followed by the first legal same-sex wedding in the United states in 2004. In 2001, the first openly gay soldier completed his term of service in the United States Army Reserves despite facing potential discharge. LGBT centers opened up throughout the state of North Carolina and there were many pride festivals, marches, and demonstrations on both local and national levels.

Headline from the January 22, 2000 issue of Q-notes.

Lt. Steve May, the first openly gay soldier to complete his army term of service as seen in the April 28, 2001 issue of Q-notes

From an article on Wold AIDS Day in the November 23, 2002 Q-notes

In addition to these achievements, articles from this batch of Q-notes also reported on discrimination and violence that LGBT community members continued and still continue to face. These issues often played out in the arena of politics. Q-notes kept a close eye on the 2000 US presidential election and reported on both overtures and discouraging comments made to and about the LGBT community by candidates. Local politics were also covered, with Q-notes reporting on local elections, giving endorsements to candidates, and identifying local issues that would be of interest to Q-notes readers.

During this time Q-notes also continued to report on the AIDS crisis. Although by the end of the ’90s new AIDS diagnoses were decreasing, many LGBT individuals and the LGBT community continued to be affected. Awareness campaigns were championed by Q-notes, and articles intended to reduce stigma surrounding both the disease and ideas of safe sex were published.

Though turbulent times for the LGBT community, Q-notes continued to promote spaces where LGBT individuals could feel safe, comfortable, and have fun. Monthly event calendars and coverage of community activities remained strong throughout the years. With more pages in Q-notes, a regular culture section was established. Fun advertisements continued to permeate the pages, both from business specifically catering to the LGBT community, and increasingly from larger national companies.

An advertisement from the December 7, 2002 Q-notes

To browse all of the digitized issues of Q-notes click here. To learn more about the University of North Carolina at Charlotte visit their website, or check out their partner page to see previously digitized materials. To see more recent issues of Q-notes, visit the Q-notes website.

 

 

Photographs by Madlin Futrell now online from new partner City of Raleigh Museum

Madlin Futrell and a police officer walk down Fayetteville Street in Raleigh in the late 1950s

Back in August, DigitalNC was excited to road-trip over to Raleigh and test out our plan for onsite digitization at the City of Raleigh Museum whose staff kindly agreed to be our pilot location.  The collection we worked on while there was the Madlin Futrell Photograph Collection, a great collection of photographs primarily from the 1950s.  Madlin Futrell was a professional photographer who lived in Cary, NC and worked for the Raleigh Times, the North Carolina Office of Archives and History (now part of the North Carolina Department of Cultural and Natural Resources), and on a contract basis for several other institutions.  The photographs we digitized include location photographs of the Raleigh area, employees in the NC Office of Archives and History, historic sites around the state, and of President Eisenhower’s visit to the state in 1958.  They offer not only a look at places around NC in the 1950s but also a look at the life of a career woman in mid 20th century North Carolina. 

Staff of the Hall of History in Raleigh, North Carolina. Photograph was taken in April 1960.

To view all the photographs digitized from the Futrell collection, go here.  To view other photographs on DigitalNC, visit our Images of North Carolina site here.  And if you’re interested in learning more about our onsite digitization program, please read about it here and apply if interested!


Saint Mary’s Student School Newspaper now online

The Saint Mary’s School student newspaper, The Belles, is now online, from its origins as “The Grapevine” in 1936 through 1995.  The Belles continues to be published in an electronic form to this day.   The paper gives a good look into the viewpoint of North Carolina teen women over a 60 year period.
 
The paper reflect the changing times over almost 60 years of the school, chronicling everything from changing dress codes and fashions, the latest entertainment, and more internal changes such as post-high school aspirations and political engagement.  Perhaps the most interesting part of the papers are the editorials – both from the writers of the paper and the student body itself.  Browsing through the editorials alone give a sense of what social and political issues of the time affected the student body the most.  
 
A brief trip through some interesting editorials in the Belles is a small trip through 20th century American history.  In 1939, a brief article was posted titled “Coffee, America, and Hitler,” reflecting on a conversation the author had with a Russian woman on a train.  
 
An editorial published in 1965 on the response in the United States by college students in particular to Vietnam seemed to both scold their fellow young Americans but also was a call to action to participation in civic life for the student body.
 
Amidst the strife of 1968, the editors of the Belles were put off by an editorial in the local paper that claims the women of Saint Mary’s didn’t care to participate in the political process or make their voice heard.
 
And an editorial in 1983 in response to the new DUI and drinking age laws passed show just how against these laws many teenagers and young adults in the country were.  

To learn more about the Saint Mary’s School, please visit the contributor page or the homepage. To see more newsletters like these, please visit the North Carolina Newspapers.


Six Months Later and We’re Not Done: Underrepresented Voices on DigitalNC

About six months ago we asked our partners to help us increase the diversity of voices shared on DigitalNC. We had an outpouring of interest, and partners have shared a number of rich collections from the African American and LGBTQ communities. Here’s an update of what has been added to DigitalNC as a result of this call.

Excerpt of a census page that includes school house census details and student names.

This 1903 Census Report for Morton Township, Alamance County, lists names, ages, and the names of parents of African American students. 

Alamance County Public Libraries shared a wide variety of materials documenting African American communities in that county. Two groups of photographs, the Heritage of Black Highlanders and Asheville YWCA Photograph Collection, are parts of larger collections held by University of North Carolina at Asheville

Several partners added African-American newspapers to those already shared online at DigitalNC. 

We’ve also been working with University of North Carolina at Charlotte to share issues of Q-Notes, which covers updates, events, and issues of the LGBTQ community.

Diversifying DigitalNC isn’t a one-time event – it’s ongoing every day. If your institution has or will be targeting collections that document racial, ethnic, or geographic communities who are underrepresented on DigitalNC, and you’re interested in sharing these materials online, get in touch.


NCDHC Strategic Themes, 2017-2019

We’re pleased to announce the Digital Heritage Center’s first set of strategic themes, which we’ve just released. These themes reflect what we’ve heard from partners and other institutions around the state over the last year. They join our longstanding but slightly revised Mission and Values statements.

If you’ve followed our work for awhile, these themes will be familiar. But there are nuances here that will drive some of our newer initiatives, such as scanning on location and increasing the diversity of voices available through DigitalNC.

Let us know if you have any questions or concerns. We look forward to working hard to help our partners share North Carolina’s cultural heritage.

NCDHC 2017-2019; empower cultural heritage professionals by offering services and training;, strengthen community identities through history and culture; increase access to information for all through freely available online resources


Newspaper serving Lumbee Tribe members in Robeson County, The Carolina Indian Voice, is now available

Headline from the September 24, 1998 issue of The Carolina Indian Voice.

Almost ten years of The Carolina Indian Voice, a newspaper out of Pembroke, North Carolina, are now up on DigitalNC thanks to our partner the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The Carolina Indian Voice was established in 1973 and was published on a weekly basis until 2005. Issues from 1996-2005 are now available digitally. The paper primarily served the interests of members of the Lumbee Tribe living in Robeson County, who make up more than a third of the population of Robeson County and almost 90% of the town of Pembroke.

The paper includes articles and editorials concerning local issues such as politics, social events, civic projects, and more. Although there is a strong focus specifically on issues relevant to members of the Lumbee Tribe, the paper also covers news and events pertaining to American Indians throughout the state of North Carolina and nationally.

Image from the 1998 First Annual Fall Pow Wow in Hoke County as seen in the November 11, 1998 issue of The North Carolina Indian Voice.

Headline from the February 25, 1999 issue of The North Carolina Indian Voice.

The paper also focuses on advocacy with many articles covering struggles against the discrimination American Indians face regarding employment, education, and housing in the United States.

To browse through issues of The North Carolina Indian Voice click here. To see more materials from our partner, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, visit their partner page.


Henderson Institute graduation programs from 1924 onward

A student’s photograph taped into a commencement booklet from 1933

Graduation programs and invitations from the Henderson Institute, provided by the Henderson Institute Historical Museum, are now available on DigitalNC. the Henderson Institute was a high school started in 1887 by the Freedmen’s Mission Board of the United Presbyterian Church. It was closed after the 1969-1970 school year due to integration. Through the years that the school was open, it was the only secondary school open to African Americans in Vance County. Part of the original school building now houses the Henderson Institute Historical Museum.

The collection of 19 graduation programs and invitations date from 1924 through the school’s final 1970 graduation. Although each program is structured differently, many include the full names of the members of the senior graduating class along with a schedule of events.

Also in this collection are five theater programs from the Henderson Institute. These include programs for student productions of The People Versus Maxine Lowe, Rest Assured, and Once in a Lifetime.

Click here to browse through the programs. To learn more about the Henderson Institute Historical Museum, visit their partner page, or take a look at their website.


We Want to Come to You! New On Location Digitization Service Begins

On Location Digitization Services icon with young boy riding in a toy car

Logo image courtesy the Braswell Memorial Library! “Ricky in Toy Car” 

Have you been interested in working with the Digital Heritage Center but find it difficult to get to Chapel Hill, or have concerns about having your materials off site? We want to come to you! We’ll be working with two or three cultural heritage institutions over the next nine months to try out on-location scanning.  If you’d like to nominate your institution, read on and use the nomination form linked at the end of this post.

What We Do

Here’s what nominated institutions will receive as part of this process.

  • We will bring our scanners, computers, and staff to your institution to digitize and describe materials from your collections. We would be there for one full weekday, at a minimum.
  • We’ll host the scanned images and associated metadata on DigitalNC.org, and give you copies of the original scans to use in any non-profit context.
  • Optionally, we can do a presentation for staff and/or the public related to any of the following topics:
    • The Digital Heritage Center’s services (for staff at your institution and/or other local cultural heritage institutions)
    • A demonstration of what we’re doing while we’re there (for staff at your institution)
    • The variety of resources you can find on DigitalNC.org and other fantastic digital collections in North Carolina (staff or the public)

What We’ll Need from Partners We Visit

If you’re chosen, we’d need:

  • At least one conference call before arrival to clarify expectations, work with you on scheduling, and talk through the materials you’d like scanned.
  • Description and a light inventory of the items we’ll be scanning, if there isn’t one already available.
  • Some assembly and preparation of the materials you’ve chosen. This might include physically pulling all of the content together before we arrive and removing staples if the materials are stapled at the top corners.
  • A designated staff contact regularly available to ask questions regarding what we’re scanning while we’re there, and to help with logistics like getting equipment in and out of the building, etc.
  • An indoor location that has:
    • at least two power outlets,
    • internet connectivity,
    • a work area large enough for 2 scanners and 4 laptops as well as extra room for materials handling,
    • seating for four people, and
    • is away from the public so we can get the most scanning accomplished in our limited time (ideal but not required).

Additional Guidance for Nominations

  • We’ll be giving priority to nominations from institutions furthest from Chapel Hill and to new partners. If you are a prospective partner, please check to make sure you’re eligible.
  • The materials have to be owned by your institution.
  • The materials should cover North Carolina subjects, events, and people.
  • For these on-location sessions, we’re accepting nominations for the following types of items:
    • photographs (prints) and/or postcards
    • looseleaf print materials up to 11×17”
    • bound items may be considered, but in very limited numbers and only if transporting them to Chapel Hill would be impossible
  • Materials can be fragile but should be stable enough to withstand gentle handling and placement on a flatbed scanner.

We’ll review nominations according to the following criteria, so you may want to address these in your nomination form:

Category Point Value
New partner 1
New town 1
New county** 2
Materials document an underrepresented
     community or population
1
Materials are well described/inventoried 5
Majority of materials date from 1945 or earlier        1
Materials are believed to be unique 1

** We have yet to work with any institutions in the following counties: Alexander, Bertie, Bladen, Camden, Caswell, Chowan, Clay, Currituck, Dare, Gates, Graham, Greene, Henderson, Hoke, Jones, Mitchell, Northampton, Onslow, Pamlico, Swain, Tyrrell, Yancey

Use this nomination form to submit!

We’ll start reviewing nominations on September 30 and will notify selected institutions shortly thereafter. If a selected institution ends up not being able to host us, we’ll continue down the list.

We’re excited about trying out this new service. Please contact us with any questions and share this with any institutions you think might be interested.


Yearbooks and city directories for Cumberland County now available

Page 56 from the 1969 Smithsonian

A superlative from the 1963 LAFAMAC

14 more Fayetteville yearbooks and 12 more city directories from our partner Cumberland County Public Library are now available on DigitalNC. The yearbooks include 7 editions of The LAFAMAC by Fayetteville High School from 1963-1969, and 7 editions of The Smithsonian by E. E. Smith Senior High School from 1956, 1963, 1964, and 1966-1969. These yearbooks join previously digitized editions. The city directories in this batch cover Fayetteville from 1937, 1939, 1941, 1954-1955, 1957, and 1963-1969.

The LAFAMAC shows a glimpse at student life at the primarily white Fayetteville High School (now called the Terry Sanford High School) with The Smithsonian doing the same at the primarily black E. E. Smith Senior High School. Both yearbooks include student portraits, superlatives, events, and activities. Both schools continue to serve the Fayetteville area today.

To browse through materials from Cumberland County Public Library take a look at their partner page. To learn more about Cumberland County Public Library visit their website.