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 2021

Ebony Images Now Available on DigitalNC

Ebony Images Yearbook

Front Page of the Ebony Images Yearbook in 1977.

Digital NC is happy to announce the new additions of the Ebony Images Yearbook from the Black Student Movement at UNC-Chapel Hill. The yearbooks include the years 1977 and 1978. From organizations to the black faculty, the Ebony Images Yearbook gave a glimpse into the lives of black students and faculty on the campus of UNC.

Ebony Images Yearbook

Black Ink was a newspaper written for and by black students on the campus of UNC. Here is a snapshot of the organization in the 1977 Ebony Images Yearbook.

The Black Student Movement on the campus of UNC is a well-known organization that has been around since 1967.  Founded on a mission to embrace a culture distinct from the dominant culture at UNC, the goals of the Black Student Movement are to strive for the continued existence of unity among all its members, to voice the concerns and grievances of its members to the University, to offer outlets for expressing Black ideals and culture and to ensure that the Black Student Movement members never lose contact with the Black Community.

Still active today, you can learn more about the Black Student Movement at UNC by checking out their website here.

To see other materials from UNC-Chapel Hill, check out their partner page.


Several small town North Carolina newspapers from the 19th century now online

Front page of the Enfield Times in 1873

Much of our newspaper digitization is done from microfilm reels, which typically only have one title on a reel.  However, sometimes a paper does not take up a whole reel and to maximize efficiency, when the reel was created, other small runs of papers are included.  Often those small runs are simply a few issues of very old papers where the only extant know copies number 2 or 3 issues.  This was the case with a reel we digitized this past year for the Bladen Journal.  In addition to the Journal, 13 other titles were on the same reel and all have now been added to DigitalNC!  

The full list includes:

Enfield Times 2 issues, 1873
Tar River Beacon 2 issues, 1876
Greenville Express 2 issues, 1880-1881
Cape Fear Lance  1 issue, 1899
The Beacon  2 issues, 1888
The Enfield Progress 1 issue, 1887
Old Constitution  2 issues, 1870
 Franklinton Weekly 3 issues, 1883, 1886, 1893
The Rural Visitor  7 issues, 1898-1899
 Graham Tribune 1 issue, 1900
The Greenville Index  1 issue, 1894
The Western Reporter  1 issue, 1881

Header of the Graham Tribune 1900 newspaper

The towns the papers represent cover the eastern and western portions of the state, with the oldest issue from 1873 and the most recent from 1900 – over a quarter century of coverage from across the state.

To see more newspapers, check out our North Carolina Newspapers section of the website.  

Bertie County materials now on DigitalNC, including W.S. Etheridge HS yearbook and Hope Plantation materials

black and white brochure with a drawing of a plantation style home on it

Our second partner in Bertie County is Historic Hope Plantation, which is a foundation that runs the Hope Plantation historic site in Windsor, NC.  The Foundation was established in 1965 by Bertie County citizens concerned about the fate of the decaying Hope Mansion. According to their website, the site’s “mission is to provide educational, cultural and recreational benefits for the public by the preservation, maintenance and the administration of Historic Hope Plantation as an element of the heritage of the Roanoke-Chowan Region and as an illustration and interpretation of agrarian life in Eastern North Carolina from 1760 to 1840.”Brochure with a color picture of a table with 4 chairs around it

The majority of materials in our first batch from Historic Hope are materials relating to the running of the site, including a very large collection of brochures and programs detailing fundraisers for the museum, as well as visitor pamphlets.  The brochures tell a story themselves, showing how historic house museum interpretation has evolved over time, since the earliest one in 1956 to present day 21st century interpretation that is less decorative arts focused and more focused on telling the story of all those who lived and worked at the plantation, particularly enslaved people.  Some of the staff’s research is also included in the batch, including the court documents of those newly freed men and women who attested their cohabitation before the Civil War ended in order to gain recognition of marriage from the state, as well as research papers written by those affiliated with the site. 

Other related Bertie County materials are also included, particularly a 1954 yearbook from W.S. Etheridge High School which served the Black community of Bertie County before integration.

To learn more about Historic Hope Plantation, visit their partner page.

Issues of The Roanoke Beacon Newspaper, from 1930-1956, Added to DigitalNC

Black and white front page of English language newspaper with several headshots and photo of bridge

Front page of the August 19, 1938 issue of the Roanoke Beacon and Washington County News discussing the dedication of the Albemarle Sound Bridge.

Additional issues of The Roanoke Beacon and Washington County News, published out of Plymouth, NC, are now online thanks to funding from the North Caroliniana Society. This newspaper was recommended for digitization by the Washington County Library which is part of Pettigrew Regional Library. With these additions, you can now search the newspaper from 1899 to 1956.

The News published articles about agriculture (particularly cotton and seafood), social events, politics, and the local schools. Town Topics and Society columns are a great source for the personal news of Washington County residents. There is also coverage of national and international news, which increases through World War II. During that time you’ll see articles that describe the town’s preparations in case of invasion, that recount the activities of local soldiers, and that call for frugality and the purchase of war bonds. 

Later issues in this run cover the aftermath of World War II, distribution of the polio vaccine to Washington County residents, and the debate around segregated schools. 

You can view all of the issues of The Roanoke Beacon and Washington County News available on our site through the newspaper’s landing page.

Issues of the Tryon Daily Bulletin from Polk County Added Online

Black and white masthead for the Tryon Daily Bulletin

The Tryon Daily Bulletin’s tagline is the World’s Smallest Daily Newspaper. This masthead is from Aug 15, 1945, with Seth M. Vining as editor.

Issues of the Tryon Daily Bulletin from 1935-1936 and 1942-1951 have been added to DigitalNC, thanks to funding from the North Caroliniana Society. This title was recommended and advocated for by the Polk County Public Library.

The Bulletin is a physically smaller paper both in dimensions and page length, and it actually boasts the tagline “The World’s Smallest Daily Newspaper” to this day. Despite (or perhaps because of) its size, the Bulletin focus mostly on local news. You’ll find items about church, school, and sporting events, and articles about marriages, illnesses, births and deaths without many syndicated articles or ads to sift through. As a daily, the paper covered smaller details than you might normally see, as specific as a list of books added to the library. 

Black and white cartoon of standing police officer saying "move on buddy" towards a seated adult writing on a notepad

The Curb Reporter column graphic beginning in the mid 1940s.

The issues scanned from 1942-1951 cover World War II and its immediate aftermath. Unlike many of the Bulletin’s peers, the front page doesn’t focus on national news but rather the war’s impact on the local community. There are calls for donations of items for soldiers, articles announcing events for soldiers visiting from Camp Croft (which was located near Spartanburg, SC), and lists of Tryon-area soldiers and their comings and goings. The paper features a regular front page column called “Curb Reporter” which is a compiled list of brief local, national, and international news items.

You can view all of the issues we’ve scanned of the Tryon Daily Bulletin on the newspaper’s landing page. All of the items we’ve scanned on behalf of the Polk County Public Library can be found from the Library’s contributor page.