Viewing entries tagged "memorabilia"

Recipes, directories, and more from pioneer Sadie Delany!

Digital NC is excited to announce new materials relating to Sarah “Sadie” Delany now live on our website, thanks to our partner St. Augustine’s University in Raleigh, North Carolina. Included in this upload are a full textbook and recipe book, staff and student directories, newspaper clippings, handwritten recipes, and other ephemera collected by Delany. 

Sadie Delany and her sister, Dr. Annie Elizabeth “Bessie” Delany, are known for being pioneering figures in the Black community. As children of an enslaved man, Sadie became the first black woman to teach home economics in white New York schools while Bessie was the second black woman with a dentistry license in New York. The sisters grew up on the St. Augustine campus in Raleigh, which their father attended. The sisters later moved to New York, after living through the Jim Crow era in the South.

With a master’s degree from Columbia and many years of experience teaching in black schools, Sadie sent an application to a white high school to teach home economics. However, she knew that if the Board of Education preemptively met her, she would never get the job because of the color of her skin. Instead, she feigned a mix-up and only met the staff on her first day arriving to teach. She went on to instruct at multiple high schools, including the Girls’ High School in Brooklyn and the Washington Irving High School in Manhattan. Below is a Washington Irving class list taught by Delany and a Girls’ High School faculty list that pictures Sadie Delany’s name.

In tandem with her academic accomplishments, Sadie was also an accomplished cook. This upload contains many of her handwritten recipes and newspaper clippings that she likely used. Pictured below is her recipe for 60-minute rolls. 

Sadie lived to be 109, passing away in 1999. To learn more about these impressive women, check out Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years, a memoir published by Sadie and Bessie in 1993. Click here and here for further reading. To explore other North Carolina collections on our site, click here.

Blowing Rock Materials Now Available for Viewing on Digital NC!

Thanks to our new partners at Blowing Rock Historical Society, their first batch of materials have been added to Digital NC! This batch of materials include Blowing Rock’s First Voter Registration Roll. The voters registration dates back to the later 1800’s. The Voter Registration Roll is racially segregated but account for both African American and White voters in the region. There is also a ledger from a local store dating back to 1887. You can also view a series of yearbooks from Blowing Rock High School from 1949-1955.

To browse more materials related to North Carolina, take a look at the other collections on Digital NC. To view more North Carolina yearbooks, visit our Yearbooks Collections on Digital NC. When new materials contributed by Blowing Rock Historical Society becomes available you can find them on their contributors page. In the meantime, you can check out what Blowing Rock Historical Society has been up to on their website.

Southwestern Community College Materials Now Available for Viewing!

Founded in 1964 Southwestern Community College is located in Sylva, NC. The materials in this batch includes over 40 year of commencement ceremony programs dating back to 1965 up until 2008. There are a variety of ceremonies including Fall, Spring, Summer and specialized ones for majors like Nursing. The programs list out the names of graduates and the degree they received. It is to be noted that the schools name changed throughout the decades and that can be seen in the graduation commencement programs. You can also find annual reviews of the college, newsletters and newspaper clippings.

You can see all the materials in the Southwestern Community College batch here. You can also browse our collections of materials relating to North Carolina at Digital NC. To see more materials from Southwestern Community College, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Honoring Ember: Greensboro Fire Safety Dog

There are many ways to educate people about fire safety. Greensboro Fire employed the famous duo Ember and flame to do the educate a variety of people about fire safety. Ember, the Dalmatian, was born July 04, 2000 and was only 8 weeks old when she began training to be a fire safety dog. Owner and trainer, Mitzi Rice aka Flame performed in more than 3,200 shows at schools, day cares and nursing homes. Ember and Flame have both passed on, but their impact on fire safety in and around Greensboro is not forgotten.

The information about Ember and Flame is from newspaper articles included in this most recent batch of materials. You can browse through the materials to learn more about Ember, Flame and the Greensboro Fire Department.

While Ember is the star of this article, the Greensboro Fire Fighters have a plethora of photographs, newspaper clippings and other information materials such as magazine issues and safety manuals for curious researchers at Digital NC.

To view more materials from the Greensboro Firefighters History Book Committee, please visit their contributor page linked here.

To learn more about the Greensboro Firefighters History Book Committee, please visit their website linked here.

Decades of High Point History Now Available!

Thanks to our partners at High Point Museum and the Heritage Research Center at High Point Public Library, we are pleased to announce the upload of decades of High Point history. Documents in this upload range as far back as 1907, and are as recent as 1989. Together, they highlight two aspects of life in High Point: golf tournaments at the Willow Creek Golf Club and services at United Methodist churches.

The cover of a magazine advertising the Henredon Classic.

Featured among these documents are the magazines published alongside both the Henredon Classic and the Planters Pat Bradley International golf tournaments. These golf tournaments were hosted annually at the Willow Creek Golf Club at High Point, and attracted world famous golfers from across the country. Each magazine featured notable competitors in each tournament, alongside columns by sports journalists analyzing the game of golf at large. Some issues even include profiles on the golfers and detailed maps of the courses they would play on. Of course, each magazine is a wonderful resource for advertisement from the eighties: local businesses and furniture manufacturers hold a key presence amongst the pages.

The latest batch also included large number of church bulletins from congregations within High Point. Churches included are Wesley Memorial Methodist, Oakview United Methodist, and Washington Street Methodist. Many of the church bulletins describe the construction and design of Wesley Memorial’s new chapel, allegedly one of the last gothic churches constructed in North America. One bulletin conducts a thorough art historical analysis of the symbolic decorations of the church, detailing the allusions carved into the walls of the church: a splendid resource for anyone interested in art history or planning to visit the historic site!

Four yearbooks from T. Wingate Andrews High School and High Point Central High School were also included in the batch, with all books covering the early 1970s at the schools.

If we’ve piqued your interest, you can investigate all of our brand new documents here. Interested in learning more about High Point history? View more documents on our website here, or visit High Point Museum’s website here.

100 Years of Wake Forest History Now Available for Viewing!

Thanks to our generous community partner, Olivia Rainey Local History Library, and at the request of our partner Wake Forest Historical Museum, the book Connections: 100 Years of Wake Forest History by Carol W. Pelosi is now available to read for free on DigitalNC. You can flip through the pages of Connections and find local history of Wake Forest, NC ranging from 1910-2008. Information covers topics like farms and crops, the railroad, local businesses, holiday celebrations, festivals, and local government leaders.

To learn more about what our community partners, Olivia Rainey Local History Library are up to please visit their website.

To view other materials made available by the Olivia Rainey Local History Library visit their contributors page.

To view more North Carolina historical items visit the North Carolina Digital Heritage Centers website DigitalNC.

Recipes, Records, and More Now Available from Edgecombe County Memorial Library!

Thanks to our partners at Edgecombe County Memorial Library, we are pleased to announce DigitalNC now has over two hundred new records to explore! Pore over records from Tarboro’s history of shipping and manufacturing, read through decades of magazine club programs, or get inspired by dozens of new recipes! This new batch covers a truly dazzling array of subjects, from as far back as 1878 to as recent as 2022. They include correspondences, legal ledgers, and even uniforms! Whatever your historical interest, this collection likely has something for you.

The back of a postcard from Tar River Oil Company.

Locals from or around Tarboro will be pleased to find a great quantity of photographs, publications, and records relating to downtown Tarboro’s historic structures. Historians have taken painstaking efforts over the years to preserve the history of this beautiful town, and the fruits of their labor are now easily seen. Many storefronts, churches, and civic buildings have carefully curated profiles, containing detailed photographs, preserved newspaper clippings, and written histories. Perhaps the most detailed of these profiles is Tarboro’s old town hall building, which served as a fixture of community politics before it was demolished in the late-twentieth century. The destruction of the building is detailed in full, even including detailed photographs of its demolition!

Readers interested in women’s history will be elated to discover over a century’s worth of documents related to the Tarboro Magazine Club, a collective of women dedicated to intellectual growth and community. The Magazine Club has graciously provided decades of correspondences between members, detailed lists of membership records, and magazine subscription lists. A vast number of programs are also included, which list the annual theme of the club alongside a schedule of lectures and talks given by members of the Magazine Club. Educational “learn-at-home” courses were also used by the club, and even include materials from UNC Chapel Hill!

A recipe card for Strawberry Satin Pie.

Locals may also fondly remember DeBerry’s Colonial Dining Room, a traditional southern kitchen that served the community for years before its unfortunate closing. Fortunately, our collection now includes a host of photographs, postcards, and menus from the dining room. We even have detailed photographs of the famous uniforms worn by the waitresses! Perhaps most tantalizing of all is the inclusion of over one hundred recipes carefully recorded by Ruby DeBerry, the matriarch of the restaurant. The recipes are an absolute gem, reflecting mid-century southern cuisine in a new way. Miss a dish? Now you can recreate it at home!

Hungry for more? You can find this collection (and more) here. Want to know more about Tarboro? Contact our partners at Edgecombe Memorial Library at their website here. Want to test some recipes? Let us know how they turn out!

New Braswell Memorial Library Materials Available!

We at NCDHC are excited to announce our latest batch of materials contributed by Braswell Memorial Library in Rocky Mount, N.C. This addition is mainly comprised of booklets from the Virginia Dare Book Club dating from 1934 to 1969. Booklets include lists of members and officers as well as scheduled events for the year. Many of these booklets are crafted into shapes including roses, butterflies, and the outline of North Carolina, showcasing members’ artistic talent and dedication to the club.

This collection also includes ten years of Bailey High School student newspapers from 1925-1935. Additionally, we have uploaded 1924-1929 commencement programs and a 1949 Future Farmers of America newsletter from Bailey High School, additional yearbooks for Spring Hope and Southern Nash High Schools, as well as a list of rules and regulations from the Wesley Privette Memorial Library in Bailey, N.C. See these records and all of our digitized materials from Braswell Memorial Library here.

Nell Cropsey Case Discussed in Latest Museum of the Albemarle Materials!

Thanks to our partner, the Museum of the Albemarle, several batches of materials are now available on DigitalNC! The first batch adds several new titles and issues of older Elizabeth City, N.C. newspapers spanning from the 1800s to 1900s.

The second batch of materials contains two magazines and several newspaper clippings highlighting notable Elizabeth City news. Two of the newspaper clippings present in this batch, one from 1902 and the other 1941, directly deal with the infamous Ella Maude “Nell” Cropsey murder in Elizabeth City. The details of the case are provided below using newspaper articles from this batch along with others in our newspaper collection.

According to Ollie Cropsey, her sister Nell Cropsey and James “Jim” Wilcox met in June 1898, just two months after the family moved to Elizabeth City. In the early days, James would come over to see Nell every Sunday and eventually started to come over almost every afternoon. During their time together the two would go on walks, rides, sail, and see shows. However, in the fall of 1901 the two started getting into arguments and spats. After a period of silence and the arrival of Ollie and Nell’s cousin Carrie, the two began speaking again. The night Nell went missing from her family’s waterfront home in Elizabeth City, she was socializing with her visiting cousin Carrie, sister Ollie, LeRoy Crawford, and James Wilcox.

That evening, on November 20, 1901, around 11:10PM, Nell escorted Wilcox presumptively out of the house. About 15 minutes later, Crawford left as well. After the departure of Crawford, Ollie closed the door and windows and went to the bedroom she shared with her sister. She was surprised to find that her sister was not yet in their room, but figured she was either still talking with Wilcox outside or in the dining room and either went to sleep or stayed awake until 12:30AM depending on which newspaper issue you read. Whether she went to sleep or stayed awake, a commotion on the property had Mr. Cropsey getting his gun to defend his pigs. At that point, Ollie told her father to not shoot as James and Nell were potentially in the yard. Not finding Nell in the near vicinity, they began to search for her. Still unable to find her, the family enlisted the help of the community the following day. The search came to an end on December 27th when her body was found close to her home on the surface of the Pasquotank River. Wilcox was found guilty of second degree murder in 1902 and sentenced to 30 years.

According to the newspaper clipping from the March 13, 1941 issue of The Daily Advance, Wilcox’s father—former sheriff of Pasquotank County, Thomas Wilcox—tried several times to have him pardoned on petitions. The pardons were denied by governors two separate times supposedly as a result of Wilcox’s attitude during the search for Nell and towards the Cropsey family during the trial. In 1918, however, Wilcox was pardoned by Governor Thomas Bickett after writing the governor a “humble letter […] declaring innocence.”

To learn more about the Nell Cropsey case as it was happening, read the March 21, 1902 issue of the Tar Heel (Elizabeth City, N.C.) that provides details of the trial or by searching our newspaper collection here. For a present day look into the case, view The Daily Advance‘s article from October 9, 2021, “Author: Wilcox wrongly convicted of Cropsey murder,” covering author William Dunstan’s talk on the Cropsey case.

To view more materials from the Museum of the Albemarle, visit their contributor page here.

To browse more newspapers from across the state, visit our North Carolina Newspaper Collection linked here.

To learn more about the Museum of the Albemarle, visit their website here.

North Carolina Central University Materials Now Available for Viewing!

The North Carolina Digital Heritage Center is pleased to announce that new materials from our generous partners at North Carolina Central University are now available for viewing and research purposes on DigitalNC! The materials consist of publications from historically Black Churches in and around Raleigh, Durham, Henderson and Oxford North Carolina, a handmade scrapbook consisting of newspaper clippings detailing Black law enforcement officers and agents in Durham and educational materials pertaining to The North Carolina Congress of Colored Parents and Teachers, Inc and the North Carolina Teachers Association. These materials give insight into Black life in the region.

The North Carolina Congress of Colored Parents and Teachers, Inc was founded in 1927 with the mission to improve student attendance rates, promote the overall health of students, lengthen the school year (NCpedia). Additionally local chapters raised money to buy land for schools, beautify campus grounds and to purchase musical instruments and other supplemental educational materials (NCpedia). In the 1950’s and 60’s local units garnered the support of radio and V ads along with a membership of over 300,000 participants to meet financial goals (NCpedia). The materials we have from the North Carolina Congress of Colored Parents and Teacher’s, Inc. are from the mid to late 1960’s. During this time education was still racially segregated by law. However, in 1969 the organization merged with it’s white counterparts and became known as the North Carolina Parent-Teacher’s Association. History of the north Carolina Congress of Colored Parents and Teachers Inc. was gathered from NCpedia.

We have publications for the North Carolina Teachers Association as well. The North Carolina Teachers Association serve African American educators across the state of North Carolina. The organization originated as early as 1881. Educators from across the state would meet annually at various schools for networking and skill sharing sessions. The organization eventually merged with its white counterparts in 1970 when racial segregation ended (NCpedia). We have the a special edition souvenir program from 1970 honoring Mrs. Ruth Braswell Jones, who served as president from 1968-1970. The bulk of materials we have for the North Carolina Teachers Association are standard publications called the Teachers Record that document notable events and accomplishments of Black educators in North Carolina along with their annual conventions. The history of North Carolina Teachers Association was gathered from NCpedia.

You can also browse through materials from historically black churches in and around the region.

To check out all the materials from this batch including the Black law enforcement scrapbook and a publication on Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People you can visit DigitalNC! To see what other interesting collections NCCU has made possible please visit North Carolina Central University contributors page. If you are curious as to what is happening on campus visit North Carolina Central University direct website.

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