Viewing entries tagged "yearbooks"

Play the Game of Student Life with 80 Yearbooks From Randolph County

A high school student in a suit and bow tie standing behind another student seated in a chair. The seated student is wearing a strapless dress with a full skirt.
Miss Oak Leaf (Pat Reynolds) and Mr. Acorn (D.J. Cagle) in the 1955 edition of “Oak Leaves” (Star High School).

Eighty high school yearbooks from Randolph County have been added to our site thanks to our partner, the Randolph County Public Library. This batch includes yearbooks from 15 schools: Trinity High School, Randleman High School, Star High School, Asheboro High School, Gray’s Chapel High School, Eastern Randolph Senior High School, Franklinville School, Coleridge High School, Biscoe High School, Farmer High School, Seagrove High School, Ramseur High School, Staley High School, Bennett High School, and Troy High School.

These yearbooks also span several decades of the county’s history, starting in 1944 with The Ash-Hi-Life and running through 1973, with four yearbook editions from Trinity, Randleman, Asheboro High, and Eastern Randolph.

Some of the special features in these yearbooks include a homecoming court straight out of a Ralph Lauren ad, the requisite reference to The Byrds, and pages of heartfelt notes from classmates. But one yearbook staff got especially creative, designing a board game that students can play with just their yearbooks and a coin to toss.

A spread of two blue yearbook pages with a winding yellow path called "The Game of Student Life." Each space on the path describes an event in the life of a high schooler and directs the player to make their next move.
The Game of Student Life from the 1972 “Links” (Eastern Randolph Senior High School).

The game, presumably modeled after the game Life, describes events that still sound familiar to contemporary high school students. One square reads, “Back to school. Laugh at sophomores — get lecture on maturity. Lose 1 turn.” Others are less relatable: “Term papers: your typist charges you $1.50 a page and you run out of money on page 2 — Lose turn.” While the board does seem to be weighted toward academic and social pitfalls, at least all players start with a credit (since “Everybody passes biology first time around!”).

You can see all 80 yearbooks (so many!) here. You can also explore all of our digitized high school yearbooks by school name, location, and year in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection. To see more from Randolph County Public Library, visit their partner page and their website.

Hendersonville HS Yearbooks Show Longstanding Community Ties

A young teacher sitting at a desk with a stack of papers in his hand. He is wearing a tie and suit jacket, and he seems to be laughing.
Tom Orr in 1972

More Henderson county high school yearbooks are now available on our site thanks to one of our newest partners, the Hendersonville High School Alumni Association. Included in this batch are 12 yearbooks from the Bearcats spanning from 1954-1972.

One of the main characters of this stretch of yearbooks is longtime teacher and alumnus Tom Orr, who graduated in 1957 and came back to teach at his alma mater after attending UNC Chapel Hill and Western Carolina. The HHSAA recently posted a scholarship announcement honoring his contributions to the school as well.

A black-and-white yearbook portrait of Tom Orr, a young, white man with dark hair. He is wearing a white shirt.
Tom Orr in 1955

Since these yearbooks span a few decades, you can see Mr. Orr back when he was still a student in 1955. Back then, he was on the business staff of The Red and White as one of the ad men. Perhaps this is what later inspired him to pursue teaching English as a career.

His obituary notes that he taught at the school for 32 years, and in that time, he received several teaching awards, both for English and Drama.

You can see the full batch of yearbooks here. You can also browse all of our digital yearbooks by location, school, and date in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection. To learn more about the Hendersonville High School Alumni Association, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Tuscola High School Students Stay on Theme in 1973 “The Mountaineer”

A black-and-white photograph of students forming a human pyramid. There are five students across the bottom, four in the middle, and three on top with their hands raised, with one person standing on the side.
The Sub-Deb club from the 1973 issue of The Mountaineer. This photo is actually from a two-page spread of human pyramid photos.

One more edition of Tuscola High School’s The Mountaineer has been added to our digital collections thanks to our partner, the Haywood County Public Library. This edition is from 1973, giving us a continuous run of the Waynesville school’s campus publications from 1967-1973.

Tuscola High School’s mascot, the Mountaineers (colloquially referred to as “The Mounties”) is appropriate for this campus, which is nestled in the North Carolina mountains (as you can see in the photo to the left). According to the school’s website, the school is “affectionately referred to as ‘The Hill’ due to our commanding view of the Smoky and Balsam Mountain ranges.”

In addition to the sweeping mountain views, a common sight in the 1973 edition of The Mountaineer is students arranging themselves into the shape of mountains. Apparently, this was the hottest formation for taking your club photo—especially if you got to be on the top.

A black and white photo of six students on their hands and knees forming a human pyramid.
The 1973 chorus officers

Who can say why so many students felt the need to literally climb on top of each other this year? Maybe they were trying to camouflage in their mountainous surroundings. Perhaps it is a social commentary on relationships or teamwork. Though we may never know for sure, there are plenty of examples in this yearbook for the intrepid researcher.

You can see all editions of Tuscola High School’s The Mountaineer here. You can also browse our entire collection of high school yearbooks by school, location, and date in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection. To see more from the Haywood County Public Library, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Watauga Yearbooks Include Memories from 5 Schools

A black-and-white photo of students typing on typewriters at desks in a classroom. In the center of the image is an adult with a short afro and glasses wearing a leather jacket.
Tony Hagler, from The Musket, 1970

A batch of yearbooks from Watauga county has just been added to our North Carolina Yearbooks collection thanks to our partner, the Watauga County Public Library. This batch includes yearbooks from four different high schools in the county and one edition of Parkway from Parkway Elementary (1953).

From Blowing Rock High School, we’ve added four volumes of The Breezes from 1953 to 1956. From Cove Creek High School (in Sugar Grove), we’ve added three volumes of The Coveteer from 1952-1956. From Boone, we’ve also got 18 more editions of The Laurel from Appalachian High School (1947-1965) and seven more editions of The Musket from Watauga High School (1966-1972).

Even though these yearbooks might make it seem like high school was just yesterday, there have been at least a few changes to the curriculum since the 1960s and ’70s. For instance, the Business Department at Watauga High School was much more typewriter-centric than business programs today. Some of the classes taught in 1970 included Typing (I and II), Shorthand, Bookkeeping, General Business, and Business English. Perhaps the focus on problem-solving skills has remained the same, though—the caption for the photo above reads, “Tony Hagler, and member of one of the typing classes, seems deeply involved with the completion of his problems.”

You can see the full batch of Watauga county yearbooks here. You can also browse our full collection of digitized North Carolina Yearbooks here by location, school, and year. To see more from the Watauga County Public Library, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Read About the Night the Lights Went Out in “The Lighted Lamp”

A tryptic of photos of nurses helping patients. On the right is a nurse leaning over a hospital bed; in the middle is a nurse standing with an adult leaning on a walker; on the right is a nurse handing a baby to a mother in a car.
From the 1977 edition of The Lighted Lamp

A batch of 24 yearbooks from the High Point Museum and the Heritage Research Center at High Point Public Library is now available on our site. Several in the volumes in this batch are yearbooks from High Point Memorial Hospital, now High Point Hospital School of Nursing.

Ironically, one of the events featured in the 1977 edition of The Lighted Lamp is “the night the lights went out.” The good news is that the event refers to the spring prom rather than a night at the hospital, and the power was eventually restored. The description of the event sets the scene well, describing students preparing for the big night:

A group of adults in formalwear dancing in a dark room. In the middle are two people stepping to the left of the photo, and on the front left side are two people holding each other.
From the night the lights went out, The Lighted Lamp (1977)

“They worked really hard while at Butner making hula girls, treasure chests, and other various decorations. Afterwards, they vigorously scrubbed the carpets and the walls that had been splattered with paint. And then they had to lug all of this back to High Point in the back of an El Camino in pouring down rain.”

Sadly, once everyone arrived in their formalwear, there was no electricity, “all because of a dumb old storm.” For an hour and a half, the prom progressed in “romantic candlelight” until the power came back on.

You can see the full batch of yearbooks here, and you can browse our full collection of digital yearbooks by school, location, and year in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection. To see more from High Point Museum, you can visit their partner page here and their website here. To see more from the Heritage Research Center at High Point Public Library, you can visit their partner page here and their website here.

Footballers of the Fifties Feature in Graham High School Yearbooks

A line of football players in helmets pushing each other playfully while one adult in a white jacket looks at them.
From The Wag, 1955

Even though this year’s football season has come to a close, there’s still more of the sport to be found in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection. Our latest batch of 16 yearbooks from Graham High School, contributed by our new partner, the Graham Historical Museum, gives a glimpse into some of the history of high school football in North Carolina.

This photo, from the 1955 edition of The Wag, is called “Jubilant Conference Champions,” since this team was the Eastern AA champion of 1954 and the runner-up to the state championship.

A list of football scores from 1949.

It seems like the 1954 Red Devils were a bit stronger than the 1949 team, which published its season of scores in the 1950 edition of The Wag. Even though the team was victorious against Siler City, Draper, Mebane, Hartsel, Durham County, and E.M. Holt, they also took some tough losses against Roxboro and Oxford. 1949 was also apparently the year that the team faced off against Trinity in the Hosiery Bowl.

You can follow Graham High School’s football team of old and get a taste of student life in the full batch of Graham High School yearbooks here. You can also explore our full collection of digital North Carolina Yearbooks here. For more information about the Graham Historical Museum, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Get Amped for March Madness With Retro Basketball Photos

A black-and-white photo of two student basketball players on the men's team jumping in the air and reaching for a basketball.
Basketball player James Pearce (right) in the 1971 edition of The Shield
A black-and-white photo of two basketball players on the women's team jumping in the air. One is about to shoot the ball, and the other has her arms up to block.
Basketball player Bonnie Watson (right) in the 1971 edition of the Shield.

Get out your short shorts and low-top sneakers—it’s basketball season, 1970s-style. We’ve got several more photos of student basketball now that three more yearbooks from Vaiden Whitley High School have been added to our site thanks to the Wendell Historical Society.

Vaiden Whitley, now East Wake High School, is located in Wendell, N.C. in Wake County. These yearbooks show the school back in 1971-1973, also known as some of the most fashionable years for both yearbooks and student basketball uniforms.

While these games may not have been quite as exciting as some of the ones in this year’s NCAA tournament, they do illustrate North Carolinian’s longstanding cultural obsession with the sport. In 1971, the Vaiden Whitley men’s team only came out on top in 8/19 games—not quite as good as the women’s team, which won 7/13. Still, the coaches called it a “profitable season.”

A black-and-white photo of two student basketball players posing with a basketball in high top socks and short shorts.
Co-captains Jimmy Wiggins and Randy Greene (1971)

You can see all three editions of The Shield in this batch here or browse all available editions from Vaiden Whitley High School here. You can also take a look at our full digital collection of high school yearbooks, organized by school, location, and year in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection.

To see more materials from the Wendell Historical Society, you can visit their partner page and their website.

Southwestern Community College Materials Showcase Student Talents

A black-and-white illustration of a campus building against a mountain range.

A batch of materials from our new partner, Southwestern Community College, is now online. This collection includes photographs of the school when it was known as Southwestern Technical Institute, scrapbooks from campus organizations, blueprints for some of the school’s buildings, yearbooks, and issues of the student literary magazine.

Southwestern Community College is based in Sylva, N.C., in Jackson county. Today, it advertises itself as the only community college with a scientific partnership with NASA. The materials in this batch also show its history of teaching technical skills, especially on this poster showing students modifying a car into a limousine. They also feature some of the academic accomplishments of students in the Phi Theta Kappa organization, a college honor society. The Alpha Eta Nu chapter at Southwestern had the opportunity to travel around the country for conferences, evidenced by the memorabilia in their 1985 scrapbook.

An illustration of a woman with curly hair dabbing.
From “Pen and Ink,” 1991

The artistic and literary talents of past Southwestern students and faculty are also on display in the issues of the school’s literary magazine. One poem, written by Eugenia L. Johnson and apparently published in World Treasury of Great Poems (1980), is called “Me.” It begins: “Me, me, me, / Who am me / I know me.”

Amazingly, it is accompanied by this illustration of a person dabbing, a reminder that the dance move was popular long before Cam Newton (quarterback for the Carolina Panthers) did it in 2015.

You can see all of the photos, scrapbooks, blueprints, and other Southwestern CC memorabilia here, and you can browse all of the yearbooks and literary magazines here. To learn more about Southwestern Community College, you can visit their partner page and their website.

The Record Holder of the Hand Reel Contest & More From the NC Fire Fighters’ Association

Two adults standing in front of a fire truck. The one on the right is wearing a uniform.

Have you ever wondered what fire fighting was like in the 1930s and ’40s? Our latest batch of materials from the Greensboro History Museum offers a look into some of the gatherings of the North Carolina State Firemen’s Association through a set of booklets documenting their annual convention and tournament.

The convention rotated between several North Carolina cities, including Asheville, Winston-Salem, and New Bern, among others. The convention booklets contain lists of officers, transcripts of speeches from the leaders, and memorial pages dedicated to the fire fighters lost in the line of duty. They also include editions of the Association’s constitution and bylaws.

Fire fighters climbing a ladder leaning against a burning building.

The tournament part of the gathering seems to include competitive drills that test fire fighters’ abilities. The last few pages of the most recent booklet (from 1942) list the records of some of the events from previous years, including the Horse Hose Wagon Contest (tied between Kinston and Morehead City in 1916 at 27 and 2/5 seconds), the Hand Reel Contest (won by Kannapolis in 1937 in 16 and 2/5 seconds), grab races and motor contests.

In addition to the convention booklets, this batch also includes some early proceedings of the Association from 1888, which describes the organization of white, volunteer companies. Also included in this set of materials (though unrelated to fire fighting) are three more editions of the Whirligig yearbook from Grimsley High School. You can browse the full batch of materials here. To see more from the Greensboro History Museum, you can visit their partner page and their website. You can also browse our collection of North Carolina High School yearbooks to see all available editions of the Whirligig and browse our Images of North Carolina collection for more photographs of fire fighters in action.

Mill Photos, Yearbooks & Family Video Show Scenes of Life in Chatham County

An adult tending to a large piece of machinery in a fabric mill.

Some photos from the Chatham County Historical Association include scenes of the Odell cotton mill that was formerly on the Haw River in Chatham County. Purchased by J.M. Odell in 1886, the mill was once at the heart of Bynum, N.C., and some of the mill’s satellite structures are still standing. The photos from this batch show the river pouring over a dam, as well as some of the machinery that was used to spin the cotton.

According to our partner, these photographs were taken in the 1950s by Arthur Hill London III, grandson of Arthur Hill London Sr. (1974-1969), who was the secretary and treasurer of the Odell Manufacturing Company at the time.

Several adults in dresses and hats talking to one another as they walk out of a house.
A still from the Siegrist family home movie, c. 1933.

These photos are only part of a batch from our partner, which also includes a set of yearbooks and an early home movie of the Siegrist family on a visit in Pittsboro around 1933. The movie shows some of the centennial celebration of the St. Bartholomew’s Episcopal Church, scenes of a cemetery, and some footage of people gathering at a family member’s home.

One yearbook in this batch is the 1940 edition of The Seniorogue yearbook from Siler City High School. It is the second-oldest edition in our digital collection so far (after the 1939 edition), and it has a surprising amount of information about each student along with their picture, including the names of their parents.

You can see the photographs, The Seniorogue and the home video here, and the rest of the yearbooks can be found here. To see more materials from the Chatham County Historical Association, you can visit their partner page and their website. You can browse all of our North Carolina high school yearbooks by school and date in our North Carolina Yearbooks collection.

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