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 August 2020


Columbia High School 1956 and 1957 Yearbooks Now Available

Thanks to our partner, Tyrrell County Public Library, the 1956 and 1957 issues of the Columbia High School yearbook are now available on our website.

The Columbia High School 1956 will and testament page.

Last will and testament page from the 1956 Columbia High School yearbook.

For more information about the Tyrrell County Pubic Library, please visit their website.

For more yearbooks from across North Carolina, visit our yearbook collection.


New Issues of The Chowan Herald Now Online

Just over 130 new issues of The Chowan Herald are online and ready to view. The issues span the early 1980s, from 1981 to mid-1983. These additions to our digital newspaper collection are made available thanks to our partners at Shepard-Pruden Memorial Library.

Serving Chowan County, North Carolina from the city of Edenton, The Chowan Herald focused on local news happenings along their side of the Abermarle Sound. Local politics frequently made front page news, especially during the local elections to county board offices.

At other times, The Chowan Herald focused on their community members, as evidenced by DeMint Frazier Walker’s obituary. A prominent community figure and principal of the eponymous high school for thirty one years, Walker’s accomplishments were detailed in the front page article located to the right.

To view all issues of The Chowan Herald, starting with our earliest issue from 1934, click here. To learn more about Shepard-Pruden Memorial Library, you can visit their homepage here.

 


A Visual Dive Into Yearbooks from the 1960s and 1970s

As we continue working from home at DigitalNC, we’re putting our efforts into areas different than our normal day-to-day. Sometimes, you find yourself sucked into things that would be glossed over if not for this change. I found myself absorbed in yearbooks, specifically from the 1960-70s.

While updating metadata on yearbooks, I began to visually notice differences by the decade. There was an obvious break in the standard presentation starting in the 60s. One of the big differences in the 1960s and 70s yearbooks was that they deviated from the conventional by utilizing monochromatic color and blank space to create areas of interest.

Other eras did not benefit from the same camera technology, but these 60s and 70s students utilized the fast-acting updates to great effect. Candid photographs became popular and were integrated into the aesthetics of yearbooks. Often, the layout created a mood through the arrangement of pictures, explaining the story visually.

 

Unlike their predecessors, 60s and 70s yearbooks used less text to review the academic year and instead opted for explanations via visual Rorschach tests. Attitudes of two-page spreads were up for interpretation from the pairing of photo and text.

But the biggest impression I was left with from looking at these yearbooks was how much creativity was squeezed into every page. Students obviously relished the chance to showcase their own versions of life on the many campuses of North Carolina.

As I keep scrolling through the yearbooks, I’m sure I’ll find more to enjoy. If you would like to start your own treasure hunt, you can click here for all 8,000 (and counting) yearbooks, or, if you enjoyed these decades and want more, click here to start with only the yearbooks from the 1960s and 1970s.


Oral histories and other audio-visual materials now online from Methodist University

42 audio recordings, including 35 oral histories, and 1 silent video showing Methodist University (then College) in the late 1970s or early 1980s are now online.  Thanks to our colleagues in the Southern Folklife Collection, these audiovisual materials were digitized utilizing funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

three adults sitting at a table

Video still from a silent video taken on Methodist University’s campus in the late 1970s or early 1980s

The oral histories including the batch are with various faculty and other staff who worked in the early days of Methodist University’s history.  There are also 9 other audio recordings that include building dedications as well as fun items such as promotions that ran on the radio for theater productions at the school and a feature called Methodist College Report.  

To learn more about our partner Methodist University, visit their site here.  To learn more about our partnership with the Southern Folklife Collection, read this post.  And to view and hear more audiovisual materials on DigitalNC, visit our North Carolina Sights and Sounds collection.