Monthly Archives: May 2012

Movin’ On Up To the Westside to a Deluxe Department in the Land of Sky…

DCR’s Western Office- The Western Regional Archives will occupy the third floor

Yes, the rumors are true- the NC State Archives is branching out and opening a new office in the Land of Sky. The Western Regional Archives will be based out of the Western Office in Asheville and is in the process of getting the place ready for a grand opening on August 10th. The new Archivist, Heather South, has been moving boxes, making forms, cataloging books, setting up equipment, learning the ropes, and getting everything in place for our patrons. We are thrilled to finally be able to better serve the western part of the state so keep checking back for updates on our progress!


Memorial Day, World War I Posters, and Civil War Updates

Monday is Memorial Day – a day set aside to honor and remember those who have served in our military. While the Search Room is closed on Memorial Day, my co-worker Aaron has worked very hard over the last few weeks to add posters from our collections to the World War I collection in the North Carolina Digital Collections. As you probably know, the NC Digital Collections is a joint project between we in the State Archives and our cohorts in the State Library of North Carolina.

Poster, They Are Giving All -- Will You Send Them Wheat?

World War I poster “They Are Giving All — Will You Send Them Wheat? ” Click on the image to see a larger view.

Given the upcoming holiday, I thought that now would be good time to give you a small taste of what we are currently adding online. To give you some background, I’m going to quote from one of our finding aids to the poster collection:

Poster, Back Our Girls Over There

World War I poster “Back Our Girls Over There.” Click on the image to see a larger view.

“The United States’ entry into World War I generated the creation and publication of thousands of colorful posters, both at the national and the local level. Over 350 World War I posters are preserved in the State Archives of North Carolina collection. They include recruitment posters from all branches of the armed forces and posters by service organizations such as the American Red Cross and the YWCA, urging monetary donations to support their work at home and abroad.

Other posters helped the government raise millions of dollars through the sale of Liberty Bonds. Posters by the U.S. Fuel Administration and the Food Administration called for additional civilian participation in the common war effort. Posters issued by the U.S. Labor Department, Norfolk Naval Shipyard, and the Emergency Fleet Corporation urged increased production and efficiency, so that equipment and war material could reach American soldiers on the front lines in Europe.

Poster, Your Place Is By His Side

World War I poster “Your Place Is By His Side” by Fred V. Owens. Click on the image to see a larger version.

Many artists used their considerable talents in the creation of posters. A few, such as Howard Chandler Christy, had already achieved commercial fame; others were of local note. This collection includes original posters created in North Carolina by Fred V. Owen and T. S. Davidson, whose hand-drawn and hand-painted works were apparently created for the U.S. Army Recruiting Offices in Greensboro, Charlotte, and Asheville, N.C.”

As those who follow me on Twitter know, we’ve recently added a lot of other materials to the World War I collection in the NC Digital Collections. I’ve tried to write as many blog posts about those materials as I can, in part because I think they’re fascinating; but also because, at least for me, World War I is a part of our country’s history that I grew up not knowing much about. One of the fun parts of being an archivist is being able to share new, exciting things as you find them; but if our blog ever seems slightly World War I-centric, that is perhaps why.

Poster, Knowledge Wins

World War I poster “Knowledge Wins.” Click on the image for a larger view.

We’ve also added quite a few Civil War materials since I last gave you an update. Here are a few of the highlights from our Civil War blog:

Records Move: Conservation and Development, the CCC, and Confederate Woman’s Home Association

In this, the next of our continuing series on the records now available on Saturdays, I’m focusing on three more collections moved to our new storage space in the Archives and Library building. The complete list of all the materials moved is available as a PDF from our website, but I’m breaking down the list into a series of blog posts.

More information about these collections can be found in our online catalog MARS, but it will likely take us a while to change the location codes in MARS and our other finding aids so we ask you to please be patient with us.

Conservation and Development, 1883-1965

In 1924 Governor Cameron Morrison had given support to legislation for restructuring of the North Carolina Geological and Economic Survey, placing “the duty of a modern Department of Commerce” upon its board. This legislation failed, but Morrison’s successor, Governor Angus W, McLean also supported the restructure and enlargement of the North Carolina Geological and Economic Survey to advertise the states advantages and to promote the proper conservation of the state’s natural resources.

The 1925 General Assembly replaced the survey with the Department of Conservation and Development. The department’s statutory duties included the active promotion and development of the state’s commerce and industry, as well as the protection of its resources. In 1927 the department established a Division of Commerce and Industry to collect and tabulate information relevant to the state’s resources and potential development.

In 1930 the Division of Commerce and Industry merged with the Division of Public Relations this office had previously functioned within the Department of Conservation and Development. The Division of Commerce and Industry continued to promote the state through public relations until 1937, when the department was granted an appropriation that enabled it to create a separate Division of State Advertising.

In 1937 the Division of Commerce and Industry was enlarged to allow it to take a more active approach in recruiting new and diversified industry. Activities of the division during this time included programs to encourage home industries and rural industries, both of which became the foundation of efforts that continued into the next decade and beyond. In 1945 Governor Gregg Cherry appointed a Committee on Rural Industries to support the division’s activities. Composed of one hundred businessmen, the committee held meetings in eleven cities, seeking to stimulate interest in the possibilities of small rural industries that would utilize local labor and raw materials.

In 1953 the U.S. Congress established the Small Business Administration to provide counsel and financial assistance to small businesses throughout the country. In response, the Division of Commerce and Industry converted its home industries program into a Small Industries Section to promote the growth of locally owned and operated industries and the creation of new enterprises. In 1962 the Division of Commerce and Industry added a Food Processing Section to encourage the development of modern processing operations.
During the late 1950s and early 1960s, the Division of Travel Information (previously named the Division of State Advertising) worked in cooperation with the Division of Commerce and Industry, conducting “Get acquainted with North Carolina” events for newcomers to the state. The two divisions also worked on a project locating welcome centers at interstate highway exits near the state’s borders. The Division of Commerce and Industry subsequently established a Travel and Tourism Section that continued into the next decade.

During the mid-1960s, the Small Industries Section merged with the newly formed Community and Industrial Services Section. The section subsequently became the main arm of the Division of Commerce and Industry for the collection of community data to be stored in a computerized data bank for use by the division and various local development groups throughout the state. Another major function of the section involved determining the expansion requirements of various manufacturers within the state and their needs for materials, suppliers, and markets.

Under the Executive Organization Act of 1971, the Department of Conservation and Development was placed under the newly formed Department of Natural and Economic Resources, headed by a cabinet- level secretary appointed by the governor. The old Department of Conservation and Development and its board retained their previous statutory powers. During the initial phase of reorganization there was little structural change. However, the division was placed under an Office of Industrial, Tourist, and Community Resources, an administrative arm of the new department. During 1973 the Governor’s Efficiency Study Commission recommended that the office be restructured to include only the Division of Commerce and Industry and a Division of Science and Technology. According to the commission, the Board of Science and Technology should be altered to emphasize the commercial and industrial value of research and to aid the state’s economic growth.
Subsequently, the Department of Natural and Economic Resources was re-created and reorganized under the Executive Organization Act of 1973 and charged with promoting the state’s economic development. The functions and powers previously vested in the Department of Conservation and Development and its board  were formally assigned to the new department, and the Department of Conservation and Development and its board ceased to exist.

Records include: Economic and Geological survey correspondence and subject file; board minutes and reports; Biennial reports; administrative reports and correspondence; activities of the department; miscellaneous subject files; assistant director administrative files; Division of Commerce and Industry; Advertising Division; Division of Mineral Resources; Fisheries Commissions Board; North Carolina Film Board files; and other materials.

Note: The Conservation and Development, Travel and Tourism Division photograph files are part of the Non-Textual Materials collection. Some of those materials are currently available online as part of the North Carolina Digital Collections.

Civilian Conservation Corps: Enrollment and Discharge Records, n.d.

The objectives of the Civilian Conservation Corps were two-fold; utilization of the country’s human resources and conservation of the country’s physical resources. These objectives were realized by employing thousands of young men between the ages of 18 and 25 in jobs that were a benefit to conservation, restoration and protection of forests, control of soil erosion and flood control, development of public parks, recreational and historic areas, wild life conservation and other useful public works. The Department of War was responsible for physical examination, enrollment, equipping and conditioning of the men. The Departments of Agriculture and the Interior were responsible for the selection and planning of work projects on national forests, parks, monuments, soil erosion control and the supervision of all projects on state and private lands and state parks. The North Carolina Emergency Relief oversaw local selecting agencies throughout the state to execute the details necessary to placing the men in camps. Of the total 66 camps, 28 were assigned to forest protection and preservation, 22 to soil erosion control, 9 to park projects, 3 to military reservations, 1 to wild life conservation and 3 to Tennessee Valley Authority projects.

Records include: Enrollment and discharge records, arranged in alphabetical order by county.

For more information about the Civilian Conservation Corps, visit our Work Projects in North Carolina exhibit.

Confederate Woman’s Home Association, Dept. of Human Resources, 1862, 1896-1976, n.d.

In 1913 the General Assembly incorporated the Confederate Woman’s Home Association to establish, maintain, and govern a home for needy and dependent wives and widows of NC Confederate soldiers and other “worthy dependent women of the Confederacy”. The association was also to assist indigent Confederate women in their own homes throughout the state. The association was governed by a seven-member board of directors appointed by the governor for two-year terms, who then elected their own president and secretary. The state treasurer served as ex officio treasurer of the association, and it was to be incorporated for forty years. The board established rules and regulations for the maintenance and operation of the home, and for the collection and disbursement of funds for needy Confederate women living elsewhere in the state.

An advisory board of ten “lady managers” was also created to assist the board of directors in the management and furnishing of the home, and in the solicitation of donations to the association. The lady managers were appointed by the board of directors for two-year terms. Vacancies on this advisory board, including the expiration of terms, were to be filled by women who represented each congressional district in the state.

In 1949 the General Assembly extended the corporation’s existence to 1 January 1960. It also added the category of deserving daughters of NC Confederate soldiers to the statute’s criteria of admission to the home, providing that no daughters should be admitted after 1 January 1953. In 1953 this proviso was repealed. Amendments in 1959 and 1969 each added an additional ten-year term of existence to the association.

The Executive Organization Act of 1971 permitted the board and the association to retain full statutory powers, but placed the Confederate Woman’s Home Association under the newly-created Department of Human Resources for administrative purposes. The Executive Organization Act of 1973 re-created the Department of Human Resources and restated the composition of the board for the association (seven members appointed by the governor for two-year terms) and its duties, which had remained generally consistent over sixty years.

In 1981 both the secretary of Human Resources and the board of directors for the home recommended that the General Assembly close the Confederate Woman’s Home, out of concern for the safety of the few remaining residents and the expense of maintaining a dilapidated structure. The General Assembly dissolved the Confederate Woman’s Home Association and closed the home effective 1 July 1981. The state assumed responsibility for relocating the remaining residents in nursing or rest homes and for bearing the non-federally funded share of the cost of their care. Title to the stocks held by the association were transferred back to the North Carolina Division of the United Daughters of the Confederacy. The board, prior to its abolition, was authorized to dispose of the personal property, furnishings, and paintings in the home.

Records include: superintendent’s correspondence, financial records, menus, subject files, and memorabilia.

Recent Transferred County Records: Alamance and Polk Counties

Newly accessioned volumes/Fibredex boxes are transferred from the State Record Center (SRC) to the State Archives. Recent transferred records  may be accessed in the State Archives search room. We have arranged and described volumes chronological. Most volumes are associated with a volume # or letter. The volumes may have an index inside the volume or a separate index volume.

Polk County:

Record of Inheritance Tax, 1921-1968; C.R.080.513.1 (Arranged alphabetically by last name of the deceased)

You may also find Inheritance tax records in the loose estate records (C.R.080.508).

Alamance County

(Records stored offsite.  You will not be able to access the original volumes on Saturday unless you make arrangements ahead of time. You may call 919-807-7310 and ask to speak with a Public Services archivist.  As always the microfilm will be available.)

Record of Wills, 1849-1968; C.R.001.801.9-C.R.001.801.30

Record of Administrators, 1902-1968; C.R.001.504.1-C.R.001.504.16 (15 volumes)

Record of Settlements, 1919-1951; C.R.001.518.4-C.R.001.518.10 (7 volumes)

Guardian Bonds, 1910-1953; C.R.001.511.3-C.R.001.511.5 (3 volumes)

Guardian Returns, 1879-1951; C.R.001.509.02-C.R.001.509.06 (5 volume)

Guardian Record, 1954-1963; C.R.001.509.07 (1 volume)

Record of Guardians and Trustees, 1963-1968; C.R.001.509.08 (1 volume)

Record of Accounts, 1932-1951; C.R.001.501.04-C.R.001.501.07 (4 volumes)

To preserve volumes, we do not photocopy volumes on the copy machine. However, you may take a picture using a camera with no flash or get a copy off the microfilm.

Memorial Day, Friends of the Archives Annual Meeting, and Facebook Events

First, a reminder: The Search Room will be closed May 26-28, 2012 for the Memorial Day holiday. For a full list of our closings see

Second, the lecture at the Friends of the Archives meeting this year will be “Researching the Tuscarora War: A Journey through the State Archives” by Dr. Rebecca Seaman and will be open to the public. Dr. Seaman, Chair of the Department of History and Political Science at Elizabeth City State University and author of an upcoming book on the Tuscarora War, will explore the causes that led to the uprising and highlight the use of the State Archives in her research. The meeting is scheduled for Monday, June 18, 2012 at 1 PM. A brief corporation meeting will precede the program. Light refreshments will follow the talk. A flyer for the event (PDF) is available from our website.

And finally, as I hear about events involving our staff I’m adding them to our Facebook calendar. If you have a Facebook account remember you can always check our Facebook page, as well as this blog, for news and events.

3rd Annual Family History Fair and 300th Heritage Weekend

[This press release was sent to me by our Public Service Branch because several of their staff will be speaking that weekend. For more information about the event, visit]

3rd Annual Family History Fair and 300th Heritage Weekend in Celebration of Craven County’s 300th Anniversary

NEW BERN (May 18, 2012) The Family History Society of Eastern North Carolina cordially invites you to celebrate Craven County’s 300th Anniversary during the 3rd Annual Family History Fair & 300th Heritage Weekend, June 1st through June 3rd at the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center.  The original Craven Precinct formed in 1712 included many of the surrounding counties from Carteret all the way to Johnston.

An official sanctioned Craven County 300th Anniversary event, the weekend will feature a 300th Heritage Luncheon with Mr. Chris Meekins, North Carolina State Archivist speaking about “The Civil War in Eastern North Carolina” and the beautiful voices of The Heritage Chorale of Eastern North Carolina who will be singing selections celebrating the many groups who have settled here.  The event will also include exhibits by area libraries, genealogical, historical, and cultural groups as well as family photo displays, kids’ history activities, door prizes, and a tea cup auction.  The exhibits, displays, kids’ activities, and beginning genealogy classes are free and open to the public.  Also featured is the Heritage Park Brunch and Ground-Breaking Ceremony to remember, honor, and celebrate all of the people of the area from the early times to the present.

The Society is excited to be partnering with the North Carolina State Archives and State Library, the Craven County Genealogical Society, the Pamlico County Family History Library, Museum, and Heritage Center, and the Richard Dobbs Spaight DAR Chapter to offer family history research and beginning genealogy classes.

The schedule for the three day event:

Friday, June 1st, 9 am to 5 pm

• Exhibitors • Family Photo Boards

• Six Family History Research Classes with the North Carolina State Archives and State Library will feature Debbi Blake, North Carolina Archives Public Services Supervisor; Chris Meekins, North Carolina State Archivist; Kay Tillotson, North Carolina State Library Genealogy Research Librarian; and Jefferson Currie, Native American Research Specialist.  Topics covered will include “Resources Available Onsite and Online at the North Carolina State Archives and Library”, “Researching Revolutionary War, Civil War, African American, and Native American Ancestry.”  Family History Research Classes:  Pre-paid registration is $25 by May 26th, after, $35.  A pre-paid box lunch is also available for $8 by May 26th, after $10.

Saturday, June 2nd, 9 am to 5 pm

• Exhibitors • Family Photo Boards

• 300th Heritage Luncheon Featuring “The Civil War in ENC” Presentation by Mr. Chris Meekins, Archivist, NC State Archives, and the beautiful voices of The Heritage Chorale of Eastern North Carolina.  The luncheon menu includes Baked Ziti with Meat Sauce and Baked Chicken, Garden Salad, Garlic Bread, Strawberry & Blueberry Shortcake, and Coffee, Tea (Sweet/Unsweet), or Water. Veggie Pasta (Red or White Sauce) is also available.  Pre-paid luncheon tickets are $20 by May 26th, after $25.

• Free Kids’ Event (9 am to Noon and 2 pm to 4pm): Make Historical Crafts, Hear Stories, Pet an Alpaca (9a-12p), Sit on an Antique Tractor, and more Fun Activities!

• Free Beginning Genealogy Classes at 10 am and 3pm include “How Do I Start My Family History?” by Barbara Ordione Kerr  sponsored by The Pamlico County Family History Library, Museum, and Heritage Center, “Getting the Most Out of the Federal Census Reports” by Carolyn Smith and Lois Gregory sponsored by The Craven County Genealogical Society, and “Researching DAR Records Online” by Lou Tate Walker and Carolyn Clemmer McCulley sponsored by The Richard Dobbs Spaight DAR Chapter.

Sunday, June 3rd, 10am to 1pm

• Heritage Park Brunch & Ground-Breaking Ceremony

Enjoy a wonderful brunch which includes Scrambled Eggs, Bacon & Sausage Patties, Biscuits, Breakfast Gravy for Biscuits, Pancakes with Butter & Syrup, Cheesy Breakfast Potatoes, Sliced Fruit, and Coffee, Water, or Assorted Juices (Orange, Tomato and Grapefruit). $15 by 5/26, After $20.

• The Heritage Park Ground-Breaking Ceremony will take place at 2 pm at 300 Pollock Street at Craven Street at New Bern City Hall.

Tickets and registration forms are available at the New Bern Riverfront Convention Center and the New Bern-Craven County Farmers’ Market.  More information about the event is available online at or by calling 252.349.0405.  We look forwarding to seeing everyone as we gather to celebrate Craven County’s 300th Anniversary!

Genealogy Workshop for Beginners at Aycock Birthplace

[This blog post comes from a Dept. of Cultural Resources press release – you can find other news related to NC Cultural Resources here.]

Back by Popular Demand! Genealogy Workshop for Beginners at Aycock Birthplace

FREMONT – If you want to learn about your family’s past but don’t know where to start, the Governor Charles B. Aycock Birthplace State Historic Site will have some answers for you.  The Genealogy Workshop for Beginners, May 19, 2-4 p.m., will offer expert advice on how to find your family history.

Debra Blake and Chris Meekins, from the N.C. Office of Archives and History, will give an overview of genealogy, how to be productive in genealogy research, and how the State Archives and State Library are great resources for genealogical research.  Handouts will be provided and there will be time for questions at the workshop’s conclusion.
Space is limited and registration is required. The fee is $10 for adults and $5 for students. Call (919) 242-5581 or email Aycock Birthplace to register.  The fee is payable on the day of the workshop.  Only a few spaces remain.

The Charles B. Aycock Birthplace State Historic Site interprets the life of a rural 1870s farm family in eastern North Carolina.  Born is 1859, Aycock was elected North Carolina’s governor in 1900.  He was dedicated to education and the site features a one room schoolhouse moved there in 1961.  It is part of the Division of State Historic Sites within the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.