Viewing entries posted in February 2017

World War II era Winston-Salem city directories now online


Hill's Winston-Salem City (Forsyth County, N.C.) Directory [1945], page 5

Hill’s Winston-Salem City (Forsyth County, N.C.) Directory [1945], page 5

Forsyth County Public Library has provided four more city directories documenting Winston Salem and the surrounding area. These directories cover 1940-1945, adding to the set that was previously available. The large volumes can be extremely useful for many types of researchers because they are full-text searchable. City directories offer a wealth of information about property rights, business ownership, and local economic history.

You can view all of the newly available city directories at the links below:

To view more city directories from the Forsyth County Public Library and browse all of their collections available on DigitalNC, please visit the contributor page. To learn more about the library and the services that it offers, please visit the website.

North Carolina masons who died in WWI and more now online


A member in full regalia at the 175th anniversary of the Grand Lodge of North Carolina

New materials from out partner The Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of North Carolina are now online. This batch includes several Minute Books and an Account book from St. John’s Lodge no. 1, Minute books and an account book from Zion Lodge no. 81, speeches from well known North Carolina Free Masons such as William Lander and J.M. Lovejoy, letters of correspondence, and more.

One item that may be of particular genealogical interest is a collection of lists of masons who died in World War I. The list is organized by name of lodge and includes the member’s rank, date and place of death, and where he was buried.

Additionally several photographs have been added including images from the 175th anniversary celebration of the Grand Lodge of North Carolina at the Raleigh Memorial Auditorium. The photos show members in full regalia, as well as men in colonial costumes as part of the celebration.

To learn more about The Grand Lodge of Ancient, Free and Accepted Masons of North Carolina, take a look at other digitized items on their partner page, or visit their website.


Colonial costumes as part of the anniversary celebration

WWII Letters and other materials from Mauney Memorial Library

New materials from Mauney Memorial Library are now up on DigitalNC. This batch includes two City Directories from Kings Mountain, as well as a time book for Kings Mountain Manufacturing Company, and a collection of monthly letters to men in armed forces during WWII from Neisler Mills.

Believing that employees from Neisler Mills serving in World War II would wish to hear news from home, C.E. Neisler Jr., the President of Neisler Mills, organized an occasional letter “of news and happenings” to be sent. The first letter in the collection was sent in August of 1942, and the last was sent in April of 1945. All letters are signed with the pseudonym, “the Old Mountaineer.” The letters include updates about the mill, political happenings, the health and goings on of residents of Kings Mountain, and listings of new Neisler Mills entrants into the armed forces. The Old Mountaineer kept a light tone in many of his letters. One letter includes news that “Will Parrish’s face had been red for the past two weeks” for telling an off-color joke by accident in front of Mrs. Gamble at the filling station. Many of these letters also include a section called, “The Home Front News,” which gathers short excerpts from letters sent in by service members.


A sign off from the Old Mountaineer


A bit of humor in the Home Front News section

Take a look at the new materials by clicking the links below:

To see more materials from Mauney Memorial Library, visit their partner page or website.

Additional Yearbook added from C.M. Eppes High School Alumni Heritage Society, Inc.

Eppesonian [1958], page 49

Eppesonian [1958], page 49

The 1958 edition of the Eppesonian is now available on DigitalNC!

Thanks to the C.M. Eppes High School Alumni Heritage Society, Inc., this yearbook adds to the run of yearbooks that are already available online. They document nearly 15 years of student life at the high school, located in Greenville, NC. You view all of the digitized editions at the following link. Eppes High School was a segregated high school until 1970, at which time it merged with Junius H. Rose High School.

To learn more about C.M. Eppes High School and the Alumni Heritage Society visit the contributor page. To view more yearbooks that document the lives of African American high school students in North Carolina, browse the African American High School Yearbooks Collection.

Eppesonian [1958], page 58

Eppesonian [1958], page 58

Valentine’s Day with Rex Hospital

rex1990003-1In honor of Valentine’s Day, an article in Volume 2, Issue 6 of Nursing Perspectives, published in 1990 by Rex Hospital in Raleigh, discusses the origin of Valentine’s Day, and casts it as an important day to honor those in the field of healthcare. According the the article, like St. Valentine, who died helping others, healthcare professionals consistently “care for the victims of poverty, hunger, and carry the spirit of brotherly love throughout the year.”

Click here to take a look at this issue and read more about this interesting perspective on Valentine’s Day, and here to see other materials provided by Rex Healthcare Library. rex1990003

New Exhibit Shares Largest Collection of Digitized NC African American Newspapers

The only issue we have (so far) of a Carver High School newspaper. Mount Olive, NC, May 1950.

From our estimation, DigitalNC shares more digitized historical North Carolina African American newspapers than any other source. Contributors range from our state’s HBCUs to local libraries and museums. To help pull these titles together, we created an exhibit page through which you can search and browse eleven community papers and nine student papers. There are also links to more available on other sites.

Below we’ve re-posted the essay from the exhibit, giving you a brief history of these papers. We hope that we’ll hear from others who may be interested in sharing more of these rare resources online.


Since the publication of Freedom’s Journal in 1827 in New York City, African American newspapers have had a long and impactful history in the United States. Begun as a platform to decry the treatment of enslaved people, the earliest African American newspapers appealed to whites, who were politically enfranchised. After the Civil War, as newly freed African Americans claimed the right to literacy, the number of African American newspapers around the country grew exponentially and the editors began addressing Black people instead of whites. Papers turned their focus from slavery to a variety of subjects: religion, politics, art, literature, and news as viewed through the eyes of African American reporters and readers. Communication about Black political and social struggles through Reconstruction and, later, the Civil Rights movement, cemented newspapers as integral to African American life. 

In North Carolina, the first African American papers were religious publications. The North Carolina Christian Advocate, which appears to be the earliest, was published from 1855-1861 by the North Carolina Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, followed by the Episcopal Methodist, a shorter-lived publication produced during the Civil War by the same organization. After the Civil War, the number of African American newspapers continued to grow in North Carolina, reaching a peak during the 1880s and 1890s with more than 30 known titles beginning during that time.

The longest running African American paper established in North Carolina is the Star of Zion, originating in Charlotte in 1876 and still being produced today. Other long-running papers in the state include the Charlotte Post (begun 1890), The Carolina Times (Durham, begun 1919), the Carolinian (Raleigh, begun 1940), Carolina Peacemaker (Greensboro, begun 1967), and the Winston-Salem Chronicle (begun 1974). Many of these long running papers powerfully documented Black culture and opinion in North Carolina during the 1960s-1970s, with numerous editorials and original reporting of local and national civil rights news.

Occasionally overlooked sources for African American newspapers are North Carolina’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) and, before integration, African American high schools. You’ll find links on DigitalNC to newspapers from eight of North Carolina’s twelve current and historical HBCUs as well as two African American high schools.

While many African American newspapers have found their way into archives and libraries, it’s common to see broken runs and missing issues. You can find a great inventory of known papers from the UNC Libraries. If you work for a library, archive, or museum in North Carolina holding additional issues and would like to inquire about digitizing them and making them available online, please let us know.

Pine Knoll Shores newspaper issues through 2016 now online


A pine woods snake hatching and adult shown in the December 2016 issue of The Shoreline

Issues of the Pine Knoll Shores Newspaper, The Shore Line, from 2015 through 2016, are now online courtesy of the History Committee of the Town of Pine Knoll Shores. These issues join 4 decades of The Shoreline that were added to DigitalNC a year ago.

The Shoreline is a monthly publication that covers various aspects of life in Pine Knoll Shores, and includes articles on community events and clubs, stories about local businesses, notes from the mayor, book reviews, and more. As Pine Knoll Shores is a beach town located along Bogue Banks, there is an emphasis on the great outdoors, including  news stories and event coverage pertaining to fishing, hunting, hiking, and beach-going.

A recent article in the December 2016 issue of The Shoreline tells the story of the 1871 discovery of a new species of snake, the pine wood snake, by botanist Dr. H.C. Yarrow, in present day Pine Knoll Shores. Pine wood snakes are common throughout the southeastern coastal plain, and are completely harmless to humans and pets. They are considered in the article to be “a living piece of Bogue Banks history.”

Click here to view over 40 years of The Shoreline. To learn more about the History Committee of the Town of Pine Knoll Shores, take a look at their partner page, or website.

Announcing a 6-Month In-Depth Digitization Effort at NCDHC: Underrepresented Communities

The Wilson Tau Gamma Delta Sorority, Date Unknown

Here at the Digital Heritage Center we’ve been talking about what we can do to increase representation of underrepresented communities on Serving these communities in ways that respect their priorities and beliefs has become a focus for many libraries, archives, and museums, and we hear partners and other DigitalNC fans asking us about this as well.  We have a few ideas in the works that we’ll be talking about over the next year.

I’m writing today about one of those ideas. We’d like to try a 6-month in-depth digitization effort during which we focus on working with you to share items in your collections representing traditionally underrepresented communities. This may be groups including but not limited to African Americans, Asian Americans, Latinos/as, American Indians, LGBTQ. If you feel sharing those items online would be useful to your users, we’d like to make that happen.

Our goals with this idea are to (1) bring partners together in a shared initiative (2) discover new collections and (3) better represent the diversity of North Carolina on

If you are eligible to work with the Digital Heritage Center, have something that fits with this effort, and would like to collaborate, contact us.

Have other digitization priorities? No problem! This won’t preclude other projects you had intended to plan with the Center. 

Thanks for considering participating in this effort, and please share this post broadly.

High Point Scrapbooks now up on DigitalNC


From the title page of the High Point Centennial Festival Celebration program

Five scrapbooks provided by the Heritage Research Center at High Point Public Library are now up on DigitalNC. These scrapbooks collect newspaper clippings that focus on municipal issues in and around High Point, Greensboro, and Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Each scrapbook covers topics in chronological order, with the first volume starting with articles from early 1951, and the last volume ending with articles from 1954. Many newspapers are represented in these scrapbooks including The High Point Enterprise, Greensboro Daily News, and The Beacon.


From the cover of the High Point Centennial Festival Celebration program

Also collected in volume 29, is a program from High Point’s 1951 centennial celebration, which focused on a “Dramatic Historical Spectacle” called “Then & Now” that told the history of High Point. The program also contains many advertisements for High Point businesses, including many furniture companies for which High Point continues to be known today.

Click here to take a look at these 5 scrapbooks, and learn more about the Heritage Research Center at High Point Public Library by visiting their partner page and website.

Recent issues of The Charlotte Jewish News are now online


A stained glass window by artist Alan Schaefer, as shown in the June 2015 issue of The Charlotte Jewish News.

New issues of The Charlotte Jewish News from 2013 through early 2016 are now online courtesy of The Jewish Historical Society of Greater Charlotte, located at the Levine-Sklut Judaic Library and Resource Center. The new issues join previously digitized issues that go back as far as 1979.

These newsletters were published on a monthly basis, and contain news stories relating to the Jewish community in and around Charlotte, North Carolina. Included are stories covering local holiday celebrations, speakers, and workshops, as well as essays and editorials. As time has gone on, the newsletter has become more and more expansive, with the first newsletters in 1979 being only a few pages long, and more recent issues often topping 40 pages. from the start, the newsletter focused on community building with each issues containing listings of upcoming activities and events. News about different Synagogues and community facilities is also covered in the newsletter. The above photo shows a series of stained glass panels dedicated at Temple Kol Tikvah in 2015 that include twelve Jewish symbols illustrating the Hebrew concept of Kavod, which the artist Alan Schaefer describes as meaning “tribute, honor, and homage.”

Click here to see all the digitized issues of The Charlotte Jewish News. To learn more about the Jewish Historical Society of Greater Charlotte, visit their contributor page, or the website for the Levine-Sklut Judaic Library and Resource Center.

DigitalNC Blog Header Image


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

Social Media Policy

Search the Blog



Email subscribers can choose to receive a daily, weekly, or monthly email digest of news and features from the blog.

Newsletter Frequency
RSS Feed