This year, the arrival of summer has brought another batch of The Perquimans Weekly newspaper from Hertford, N.C. These papers are available thanks to our partner, the Perquimans County Library, and thanks to our staff at our Elizabeth City State University (ECSU) location, who digitized them. This batch expands the digital availability of The Perquimans Weekly into the 21st century with issues from 1994-2003.
Since there are so many yearbooks in this batch, there is a wide assortment of creative yearbook titles—some of which are stronger than others. As an alumna of R.J. Reynolds High School, I’ll admit that I have some bias toward the Black and Gold, but even I have to acknowledge that it’s a pretty generic name (in this batch alone, we’ve also got The Maroon and Gold from Atkins, the Blue and White from Old Town High School, and the Blue and Gold from Griffith High School).
Rather than opt for the usual school colors-based title, here are the top five yearbooks that aimed for something a little different.
I like that this team of young yearbook editors took a philosophical approach to their title. Like looking through a keyhole, a yearbook can only give a limited picture of what the culture and experience of Rural Hall High School was like. They continue this slice-of-life theme on the inside of the yearbook as well with this comical drawing featuring some of their classmates.
There’s something so quintessentially high school about being assigned The Iliad, possibly reading it, and then using it as a metaphor for the obstacles you face (a move perhaps only topped by a comparison of your personal journey to The Odyssey). This literary homage is made even better by the fact that the mascot for Southwest was the Trojan, meaning that this yearbook likely describes the siege and fall of the school by means of wooden horse.
Third place on this not-at-all subjective list was initially selected because of its overlap with the editorial column of James Mackintosh Qwilleran, a fictional detective and journalist who writes “The Qwill Pen” in the mystery series The Cat Who… by Lilian Jackson Braun. However, based on the uniforms required for yearbook photos, it does also seem possible that the students of Salem Academy really were writing with quills.
As someone with no military experience, when I initially picked this title, I had a different mental image of what the “dress parade” might include. However, given the fact that students at Oak Ridge did have to wear their uniforms on display for the yearbook, it still seems like a really fitting title. Plus, this edition has some cool woodblock prints and this one inexplicably tiny photo of a gazebo.
I don’t even know where to begin with this absolute chef’s kiss of a yearbook title. I love the old-timey spelling. I love the idea that a yearbook is the modern equivalent of a person who yells out the town news. I love the font choice and the inclusion of “Ye.”
Old Town High School experimented with a couple of names before this (see Blue and White and The Log), suggesting that it might take a few tries before you can land on the perfect name. The icing on the cake is that every time I read it, I can hear the opening notes of Lil Nas X’s 2019 hit “Old Town Road” in my mind. (Sadly, Old Town High School was not located on Old Town Road, though such a road does exist in Winston-Salem).
Though this batch of yearbooks covers so many different eras of high school throughout the 20th century, one consistent element among several editions is a focus on uniforms. The 1970 edition of The Falcon, for example, shows a representative from the school’s various teams showing off their athletic uniforms. This 1970 cheerleading uniform is a bit of a departure from the cheerleading uniforms of the 1950s, as evidenced by this squad from Mills River High (though the dance teams’ preference for shiny uniforms seems to be evergreen).
In honor of Pride Month we’re happy to announce additional issues of The Front Page are now online. These issues date from 1987-1996 and are added to issues already available from 1979-1986.
A Raleigh newspaper by and for the LGBTQ+ community, The Front Page covered national and local news. The paper’s tagline, “Celebrate – Active – Educate!,” reflects reporting on local social gatherings, issues that inspired action, and national and local news. Headlines are alternatively devastating and uplifting with coverage of hate crimes, discrimination, and the AIDS epidemic as well as community support, political victories, and legal triumphs.
Each June the paper covers Pride Month events. Parades, rallies, and festivals all celebrate the community amd commemorate what is broadly considered the seminal Pride Month event – a parade on June 28, 1970 on the 1-year anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising.
One thing that many of the Burke county yearbooks have in common is a shared admiration for animal mascots. In addition to the adorable tiger seen on the 1956 edition of the Impersonator from Valdese High School, you can’t overlook the endearing little guy on the front of the 1965 Calvacade from Drexel High School. (Though you may think he is a funny bear or perhaps a fox, further investigation reveals he is, in fact, a wolverine.) This set also includes a fighting eagle, a turkey, wildcats, bulldogs, and one fancy horse giving a knight a lift.
Initially, the journal was published semi-annually (1976-2005) but is currently being published annually. When viewing the collection you can see the shift in publishing frequency. Inside the covers of this journal you will find the history of historical landmarks, maps, funeral and cemeteries along with general connections among families in and around the Rockingham County, NC area.
To view more genealogy journals from across North Carolina, click here!
Fritz was “the famous Nobby Shoppe cat,” “well known among the business houses of Brevard” and “petted by everyone.” He was, according to his obituary, “the object of much admiration on account of his enormous size and his beauty.” Sadly, Fritz succumbed to illness, but his obituary shares front page real estate of The Transylvania Times with a feature on the Lindbergh baby and updates on the county tax penalty—in other words, he was a big deal. (Then again, this front page also features a story about Ralph Woodfin, a farmer who found two “freak eggs,” or an egg within an egg—known today to happen because of a counter-peristalsis contraction).
You can read more about the noteworthy community members of Transylvania County in the three newspapers just added to our site: The Transylvania Times(issues from 1887, 1932, 1953, and 1967), the French Broad Hustler (issues from 1893, 1894, and 1896), and the Brevard News (issues from 1905 and 1923).
Thanks to our partner, Wayne County Public Library, a batch containing 18th and 19th century land grants for some of the earliest settlers of Wayne County; photographs of individuals protesting segregation; scrapbooks of materials detailing the history of Goldsboro City Schools; Goldsboro newspapers; family photographs; history of The Cultural Movement African Dance Company; and much more are now available to view on our website.
A portion of the materials in this batch were digitized by staff during a community scan day at the Wayne County Public Library. Using materials brought in by community members during the event, the Wayne County Public Library Community Collections exhibit has been added to DigitalNC.
Among the materials brought to Wayne County Public Library’s community scan day was a collection of family photographs spanning from circa 1880s to circa 1950s. Snippets of boating adventures, pets, children playing, architecture, and more can be found throughout the record. A small selection of these fascinating photographs can be viewed below.
In addition to providing information about the church’s history and participation in the Mount Holly community, this collection of bulletins may prove useful for genealogists interested in the Gaston County area. The bulletins frequently list a directory of church staff, including Sunday School teachers, fellows, and scouts. Weekly activity leaders and other members of the congregation are frequently listed as well.
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.