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 by Jessica Serrao


70 years of Mars Hill University student newspaper now online

 

A mosaic of The Hilltop mastheads used over the years spanning from 1927 to 1995.

A variety of Hilltop mastheads used over the years. Top to bottom: June 18, 1927; March 18, 1948; August 29, 1975; October 1, 1976; May 1, 1992. Left: February 2, 1995.

Seventy years of The Hilltop, Mars Hill University’s student newspaper, have been added to DigitalNC. The 924 issues were provided by our partner, Mars Hill University, and cover academic years from 1926-1995.

Mars Hill University is located in Mars Hill, a town in Madison County approximately 20 minutes north of Asheville in the mountains of western North Carolina. According to the university’s website, it is “the oldest institution of higher learning in western North Carolina on its original site.”

Image of the first building at Mars Hill College and Edward Carter who donated the land for the building from the October 27, 1934 issue of The Hilltop.

Image of the first building at Mars Hill College taken from the October 27, 1934 issue of The Hilltop.

The university is a private four-year liberal arts institution founded in 1856 by Baptist families to provide an education for their children based on the Baptist faith. While no longer directly associated with any religious organization, the university identifies as “an academic community rooted in the Christian faith.”

Article introducing the new Mars Hill College newspaper from September 25, 1926 issue.

An article introducing the new Mars Hill College newspaper from the first issue dated September 25, 1926.

First founded as the French Broad Baptist Institute, the name was not long after changed to Mars Hill College. In 2013, it became Mars Hill University to reflect the institution’s growth in enrollment and the variety of educational offerings. Students began publishing The Hilltop when the institution was still Mars Hill College. It is the official student newspaper created to cover campus news for the students, faculty, and staff.

Articles cover a wide variety of topics. The first issue from 1926 reports on campus beautification efforts, student enrollment, activities of campus organizations, the upcoming football season, and more. Faculty and staff news is also covered, with reports on new hires, retirements, and milestone events. To read these and thousands of other articles, visit and browse the Mars Hill University Student Newspaper page.

List of student newspaper staff members from the September 25, 1926 and March 30, 1995 issues of The Hilltop.

List of staff members for The Hilltop from the September 25, 1926 issue (left) and March 30, 1995 issue (right) who worked to bring news to the campus community.

The Mars Hill University yearbook, The Laurel, is also available on DigitalNC with editions from 1917-2016. For more information about these and other materials from Mars Hill University, check out their partner page or their official website.

 

 


Partner Wake Forest University contributes 19 new newspaper titles

Carolina Baptist newspaper masthead

Carolina Baptist newspaper masthead from September 2, 1857.

Thanks to our partner, Wake Forest University, there are 19 new newspapers added to DigitalNC. Dating from 1857 to 1925, these newspapers were written for Christian communities from the mountains to the Piedmont to the coast of North Carolina.

Most of the newspapers are affiliated with the Baptist denomination, and their audiences vary in size and geography. Some were published for specific churches, like the Broad Street Worker “Devoted to the interests of Broad St. Baptist Church” in Winston, N.C. Others were published for a wider audience by regional, state, or national organizations, like the North Carolina Baptist Missionary Worker and The Gospel Herald published by the Boards of the Baptist State Convention, and the Conflict published by the Anti-Evolution League of America.

To look through the 58 issues of these publications, click the links below:

To see other materials from Wake Forest University, visit their partner page or their website.


Crossroads, newspaper of Belmont Abbey College digitized

Crossroads, the newspaper of Belmont Abbey College, is now digitized on DigitalNC. Courtesy of our partner Belmont Abbey College, 44 issues are available to browse beginning with the very first off the press in November 1971. This collection spans from 1971-1979 with issues published every other month.

Belmont Abbey Cathedral as seen in the July 1973 issue of Crossroads.

Belmont Abbey College lies just west of Charlotte in Belmont, North Carolina. Crossroads was established to serve its students, faculty, and administration by providing information about campus activities. It covered issues affecting the college as well as more general issues in higher education. As a Catholic and Benedictine college, the newspaper’s editorial board supported Christian values and worked to uphold “Christian ethics, good taste, and journalistic quality” (Crossroads, November 1971, p. 2).

Among the news headlines are graduations, alumni news, fundraising campaigns, appointments of new abbots, and changes on campus reflective of this decade’s larger cultural movements. The first computer came to campus in 1968 and, in 1971, Crossroads featured an article charting the college’s subsequent adoption of new technology.

Image of Belmont Abbey’s first female student as seen in the September 1972 issue of Crossroads.

Co-education became another major turning point on campuses across the nation in the 1960s and 70s. Belmont Abbey’s first female student enrolled in the fall of 1972. This decision “broke a ninety-six-year tradition,” declared a March 1972 article.

In 1973, the Belmont Abbey Cathedral became part of the National Register of Historic Places. Within its walls is found a slave block converted to a baptismal font. According to this July 1973 article, the rock is inscribed: “Upon this rock, men once were sold into slavery. Now upon this rock, through the waters of baptism, men become free children of God.”

Image of Civil War era slave block-turned baptismal font as seen in the July 1973 issue of Crossroads.

 

To read about these and many other events in the issues of Crossroads, click here. To see additional materials from our partner, Belmont Abbey College, visit their partner page.