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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Over 400 Additional Issues of the UNC News Letter Now Online at DigitalNC

The front page of the February 18, 1925 edition of the University of North Carolina News Letter

8 years and over 400 issues of The University of North Carolina News Letter has been added to DigitalNC., courtesy of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. We previously digitized issues of the News Letter from its inception in 1914 to October 1920, but the new addition brings our collection into November 1928, more than doubling our collection.

A 1928 chart of facts about NC, including population, property value, manufacturing value, and more.

Published by the UNC Bureau of Extension, this News Letter was delivered to students weekly. As a single sheet distributed once a week, the News Letter gave the students of UNC information about local news, state and national news, and everything they needed to know in a quick read. In one 1921 issue, the News Letter included information about how millions of dollars were directed for public highways, New Zealand’s national debts, the amount of money North Carolina paid in taxes to the federal treasury the previous year, and words from the state governor about the ongoing economic crisis. These issues are very economics focused, with many including graphs and charts of money and taxes, population information, and more.

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


New Yearbooks and More from Boonville Public Library Now Available on DigitalNC

The exterior of Boonville High School, 1964

A new batch of yearbooks from Boonville, North Carolina is now available on DigitalNC, courtesy of our partner, the Boonville Community Public Library through the Northwestern Regional Library. Included are over 20 yearbooks from Boonville High School, stretching from 1939 to 1967, and a 1993 booklet detailing the history of the Quaker community at Deep Creek.

These yearbooks contain individual portraits, faculty portraits, class portraits, and photographs of student activities, including clubs and sports teams. Some also include class histories, where they reminisce about their time at Boonville High School, “class prophecies” where the students predicted they will be in the future, and “class wills”, where students bequeathed their skills, abilities, or titles to incoming seniors and underclassmen. Because this collection contains yearbooks across nearly 3 decades, they represent a great transitional time in the school’s history.

A photo of the 1965 social event, “An Evening in Paris”

A booklet dedicated to the history of the Quakers at Deep Creek is also included in this batch. Written and compiled by Nancy Shore Reece Holt in 1993, this booklet tracks the history of the Deep Creek Friends as far back as 1781 and their time spent as a fixture of the community. It also includes cemetery listings and indexes of those who are buried at the Deep Creek Friends Meeting Cemetery.

To learn more about the Boonville Community Public Library, take a look at the partner page for the Northwestern Regional Library or their website.


New Yearbooks from Wendell Historical Society Now Available at DigitalNC

A 1966 overhead shot of the then-brand new Vaiden Whitley High School

Players from the 1968 Warriors team

A new batch of several yearbooks from Wendell, NC are now online and are available on DigitalNC, courtesy of our partner, the Wendell Historical Society. This batch of The Shield from Vaiden Whitley High School stretches from 1966 to 1968.

As Vaiden Whitley High School was founded in 1966, this represents the first collection of yearbooks from VWHS, and allows us to see what its first students thought of the new high school. The 1966 Shield, a result of Wake County schools consolidating for integration purposes, made sure to note the importance of a wholesome school environment and supporting all students. These yearbooks include individual portraits, class portraits, photos of student clubs and lists of individual accomplishments, and more. Sports team accomplishments were also highlighted. For example, the 1968 Warriors team (right) defeated every team in their conference at least once to finish the season 17-9.

These yearbooks provide a valuable window into what school life was like in Wake County at the time. To see more from the Wendell Historical Society, click here to view their partner page, or visit their website.


2018’s Most Popular Items on DigitalNC.org

Today we’re taking a look at the most-viewed items on DigitalNC.org for 2018. Yearbooks and newspapers are the most populous and popular items on our site, so it’s no surprise that they took four of the five slots. What rose to the top and why? Take a look below.

#1 Pertelote Yearbook, 1981

Contributing Institution: Brevard College

This year our most viewed single item on DigitalNC was the 1981 Pertelote yearbook from Brevard College.

The Pertelote was popular due to the apprehension of a mailbombing suspect in October of this year and his ties to several North Carolina schools. Cesar Sayoc was a student at Brevard College in the 1980s and his photograph can be found in several locations within the 1981 yearbook, including this club photo from page 134.

A group photo of ten members of the Brevard College Canterbury Club

#2 The Outer Banks Fisherman

Contributing Institution: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

On a lighter note, the second most popular item on our site was a film from the early 1980s entitled “The Outer Banks Fisherman.” It features Freshwater Bass Champion Roland Martin fishing on the Outer Banks. This film had a few particular days of internet popularity when it was mentioned on a couple of North Carolina hunting and fishing forums.

Man in a yellow slicker fishing on the beach, smoking a pipe

#3 North Wilkesboro Journal-Patriot Newspaper, December 8, 1941

Contributing Institution: Wilkes County Public Library

The third most popular single item on DigitalNC was the December 8, 1941 issue of the North Wilkesboro Journal-Patriot newspaper. You can tell from this striking headline that it was published the day after the attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II. This paper generally received referrals via Google all year, but we’re not sure which search terms were leading users to this page so consistently.

#4 The Franklin Press and Highlands Maconian Newspaper, April 23, 1953, page 9

Contributing Institution: Fontana Regional Library

Many of our referrals come from Facebook, and that was the case with this fourth most popular item. It was featured in the Facebook Group “You May Be From Franklin NC If…” The original poster stated that Group members had looked for photos of the Old County Home over the years, and that they had recently uncovered this newspaper page which includes pictures of the Home’s state in 1953. Top half of the april 23 1953 Franklin Press and Highlands Maconian, page 9

#5 The Daily Tar Heel Newspaper, September 2, 1986

Contributing Institution: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Facebook sharing also boosted this item’s rating, after the UNC-Chapel Hill University Archives asked for memories of the legal drinking age being raised to 21 in 1986 and the “send-0ff” on Franklin Street before the law came into effect. They shared a quote from a police officer as well as a link to the article below, which documents the damage and disgruntlement caused by the downtown party.

Top half of Daily Tar Heel front page from September 2, 1986, with photo of crowd on Franklin Street at night

 

Thanks for coming on our tour of the top DigitalNC items from this year. For the curious, we topped 4 million pageviews and 400K users in 2018! We’re looking forward to working with partners to share even more of North Carolina’s cultural heritage in 2019. 


Hundreds of New Photographs and Artifacts from Kings Mountain Historical Museum and Mauney Memorial Library Now Online at DigitalNC!

Hundreds of new photos, documents and artifacts have been newly digitized at DigitalNC, courtesy of our partners, the Kings Mountain Historical Museum and the Mauney Memorial Library. These digitized materials are part of a joint project between the two institutions, DigitalKM.

Vice President Rockefeller speaking at Kings Mountain High School in 1975 in celebration of the bicentennial.

Included in this batch is nearly 600 images and over 50 historical artifacts from Kings Mountain Historical Museum. These photos include blueprints for the U.S. Post Office at Kings Mountain, photos from the Kings Mountain Centennial parade and celebrations, school and class photos, photographs of military personnel, pictures of local clubs, bands, and sports teams, and much, much more.

Some of the artifacts from Kings Mountain Historical Museum include souvenir programs and other memorabilia from the centennial (100 years), sesquicentennial (150 years), and bicentennial (200 years) anniversaries of the Battle of Kings Mountain. This collection also includes a set of different photographs of military personnel, individuals from Kings Mountain, Trinity Episcopal Church in Kings Mountain, sports teams from the Kings Mountain High School, and much, much more.

A Boeing Flying Fortress, purchased with war bonds bought by Kings Mountain residents during WWII.

Also included are over 125 photos from Mauney Memorial Library and over a dozen historical objects. The photos include class pictures from schools around Kings Mountain, photos of churches around Cleveland County, areas and buildings in Kings Mountain, several aerial views of local schools, and much, much more.

Among these artifacts from Mauney Memorial Library are a collection of research binders by Bonnie Mauney Summers, which contain hand-written notes and charts of genealogical research on 3 branches of the Mauney family and others around Kings Mountain. There is also a binder of monthly meeting minutes taken by the secretary of the Kings Mountain House and Garden Club, dating from 1956-1963. Finally, this collection includes a series of different photographs of areas and people around Kings Mountain, as well as a batch of letters to military personnel sent and received during World War II.

Charles E. Neisler Jr, relaxing in the Davidson College Chemistry Lab, circa 1915.

You can learn more about the Kings Mountain Historical Museum by visiting their contributor page or by visiting their website. To learn more about the Mauney Memorial Library, click here to visit their partner page or click here to visit their website. This collection is part of a joint project to digitize materials related to Kings Mountain history. To learn more, visit the DigitalKM website.


New Transylvania County Yearbooks Now Available and Online at DigitalNC

A group after our own heart: the 1967 Rosman High Library Club

 

A new batch of Transylvania County, North Carolina, are now up on DigitalNC, courtesy of our partner, the Transylvania County Library. Included in this batch are several editions of The Oriole from Rosman High School, and the 1967 and 1968 editions of Brevardier from Brevard High School.

A photo of the 1967 Brevard High School Marching Band

These yearbooks show what it was like to go to school in Rosman and Brevard at that time. These yearbooks show individual portraits, class portraits, and photographs of activities, sports teams, and organizations like the Future Farmers of America and the Library Club. They also include photographs celebrating the years’ school plays, and faculty at the school, as well as honor societies.

Some also include class histories, class songs and poems, and more. For example, the 1949 Oriole contains a class prophecy, where the author tried to predict where the graduating seniors would be in several years, and “class wills”, where the graduating class left behind skills and memories to the future graduating students.

Follow the links below to browse the yearbooks from the schools included in this batch:

 

World history students at Brevard High School studying, 1968

To see more materials from the Transylvania County Library, please visit their partner page or visit their home page.


DigitalNC on the Web: Genealogy blogs

Genealogists are probably our biggest users here at DigitalNC and we love the blog we’re highlighting today because it gives us some great insight into some of the finds one particular genealogist is making using DigitalNC.  Taneya Koonce is a fellow information science professional and also an avid genealogist.  On her personal blog, Taneya’s Genealogy Blog, she chronicles her work to trace her family’s history and the resources she uses to do so.  

Clipping from a genealogy blog about the connection of her family to Sylva, NC

A really great example of the way Ms. Koonce has used DigitalNC for her research is her post titled “And Now I Know Why” which shows how she traced why her great grandfather’s brother died in Sylva, NC, a place the family had not had any obvious connections to, which involved looking at yearbooks from Winston-Salem State University and their student newspaper, both of which can by found on Winston-Salem State University’s partner page.  

To see more posts about Ms. Koonce’s use of DigitalNC in her family history research, view all the posts tagged DigitalNC here.

If you have a particular project or know of one that has utilized materials from DigitalNC, we’d love to hear about it!  Contact us via email or in the comments below and we’ll check out.  To read about other places on the web that feature content from DigitalNC, check out past blog posts here.  

 


1924 Cookbook from Davie County Public Library Now Online at DigitalNC!

A 1924 cookbook from Farmington, North Carolina has been digitized and added to DigitalNC, courtesy of our partner, the Davie County Public Library.

Sample recipes inside the cookbook for chicken and potato salad

Compiled and published in 1924 by the Ladies Aid Society of Farmington, this cookbook includes recipes and “tested receipts” for a wide variety of dishes, including soups, seafood, meats and appropriate sauces, breads, salads, sandwiches, desserts, drinks, cakes, and more. Some of the recipes included in the photo on the right are for chicken salad and potato salad, as well as their appropriate seasonings. It also includes “miscellaneous” advice on how to prepare and preserve eggs and how to cure meat, as well as unusual home remedies for coughs (sulfur), burns (turpentine), and chapped hands (melted soap and bran). We can’t attest to whether these home remedies work or not!

This cookbook represents a valuable new addition to our knowledge about Davie County in the early 20th century, as well as the knowledge women were passing around during the 1920s. To see more materials from Davie County Public Library, visit their contributor page or visit their website.


Chowan Female Collegiate Institute student literary magazine now online at DigitalNC

Chowan The Casket March 1854

Chowan Female Collegiate Institute, The Casket, March 1854

A single issue of The Casket, the student literary magazine of the Chowan Female Collegiate Institute (later Chowan University) is now online at DigitalNC. The issue, which dates from March 1854, is an interesting window into the minds of young, educated women during the mid-Nineteenth Century.

The writings within explore topics like religion and the home, but are especially remarkable for supporting views that seem decidedly modern about women.  For example, a piece written by one E. Lee attacks the viewpoint that women are incapable of mathematical thinking and closes with the following proclamation: “Henceforth, then, let it be acknowledged not only that Woman has a fibre more in the heart than man, but that she has also as many cells in the brain” (page 6). Another column by the same author criticizes the existing historical and literary canon for ignoring the achievements of women in both fact and fiction. “The world’s history, from the most remote period, furnishes a record of the noble deeds and attainments of man [emphasis in original]…,” she writes, then asking, “But whither shall we look for an account of woman’s deeds? As a sword in its sheath, they are concealed” (page 7-8).

This issue of The Casket is held by UNC Libraries as part of the North Carolina Collection. Click here to learn more about the other UNC materials hosted online at DigitalNC.


Microfilmed Newspaper Nominations Selected for Digitization, 2019

Back in August, we announced our annual call for microfilmed newspaper digitization. We asked institutions throughout North Carolina to nominate papers they’d like to see added to DigitalNC. As it is every year, it was an incredibly tough choice – we are typically able to choose between 40-60 reels out of hundreds or thousands nominated. This year we’ve chosen the following titles and years.

Title Years Nominating Institution
Carolinian (Raleigh) 1946-1959 Olivia Raney Local History Library
Chatham Record (Pittsboro) 1923-1930 Chatham County Libraries
Chowan Herald (Edenton) 1934-1956 Shepard-Pruden Memorial Library
Concord Times 1923-1927 Cabarrus County Public Library
Goldsboro News 1922-1927 Wayne County Public Library
Yancey Record / Journal 1936-1977 AMY Regional Library System

For our selection criteria, we prioritize newspapers that document underrepresented communities, new titles, papers that come from a county that currently has little representation on DigitalNC, and papers nominated by new partners. After selection, we ask the partners to secure permission for digitization and, if that’s successful, they make it into the final list above.

We hope to have these titles coming online in mid-2019. If your title didn’t make it this year don’t despair! We welcome repeat submissions, and plan on sending out another call in Fall 2019.