Monthly Archives: July 2012

Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Management Plan Available for Public Review

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

Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Management Plan Available for Public Review

SULLIVANS ISLAND, S.C. – The Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission‘s Management Plan is available for public review and comment through Aug. 17, 2012.  Management plan copies can be viewed electronically at libraries throughout the Corridor.

The long-awaited document is 272- pages, with a CD of appendices.  It provides a description of Gullah Geechee people and culture and a brief historical overview. The plan highlights examples of important cultural resources throughout the corridor, summarizes its natural resources, discusses land ownership and land cover, and briefly touches on the socioeconomic conditions within the corridor.  It provides a basic level of information about the corridor to facilitate a better understanding of the future implementation that is outlined in the management approach.  The commission’s implementation theme is “Enlighten and Empower Gullah Geechee People to Sustain the Culture.”

In North Carolina the corridor runs through all of Brunswick and New Hanover counties, most of Pender County and part of Columbus County.  The Office of Archives and History within the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources is a supporter of the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor initiative.

“The department has worked with local stakeholders such as the Gullah Geechee Caucus in Wilmington and hosted commissioners and visitors at historic sites such as Brunswick Town/Ft. Anderson and Ft. Fisher,” said Michelle Lanier, acting director of the N.C. African American Heritage Commission.  She encourages North Carolinians to provide feedback on the plan.

“This very significant document was produced as a collective effort by the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Commission and National Park Service (NPS) partnership since 2007,” said Ronald Daise, commission chairman.  “We commissioners are very proud of the Management Plan’s development and are confident it will intrigue the public, stakeholders, prospective partners, and Gullah Geechee community and grassroots organizations.”

Written comments may be submitted by visiting the website of the NPS PEPC (Planning, Environment and Public Comment) or mailing: Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor Commission, c/o Commission Chairman, 1214 Middle Street, Sullivan’s Island, SC 29482.  Information also is available on the commission’s website.

About the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources

The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council, and the State Archives.

Cultural Resources champions North Carolina’s creative industry, which employs nearly 300,000 North Carolinians and contributes more than $41 billion to the state’s economy.

To learn more, visit

All the News That’s Fit to Print

There has been so much going on around 109 E. Jones St. that I thought maybe it was time to condense it all down to a blog post to catch you up.

By now you’ve probably seen notices various places, including here, about our new records management blog called “The G.S. 132 Files.” Although the blog is aimed more at records managers than the general public, here are a few posts that may interest our readers here:

Other blog posts and websites that may be of interest to you:

There is also some news involving our digital collections:
  • For the fans of our World War I poster collection: there are 12 posters left in our queue of things to put online. Currently there are ca. 486 posters in the NC Digital Collections and we’ve started scanning our World War II posters.
  • We’ve also started loading a collection called “Women, Marriage, and the Law,” which was previously known as “Studies in Scarlet.” The Studies in Scarlet Project was organized and partially funded by the Research Libraries Group in order to created a “virtual collection” of digitized primary and secondary documents valuable for researching the legal, historical, and cultural aspects of marriage and other personal relationships in the United States and the United Kingdom from 1815 to 1914. In addition to the State Archives of North Carolina, the participating institutions included the Harvard University Law Library, the New York Public Library, the New York University Law Library, Princeton University Libraries, the University of Pennsylvania Law Library, and the University of Leeds (U.K.). Studies In Scarlet was completed in 1998. Obviously we’re only loading the State Archives materials, but there’s still a lot of interesting historical and genealogical information in there including petitions for divorce, petitions to recognize children born outside of a legal marriage, and petitions from slaves or their spouses seeking their freedom. Eventually the collection will also include records related to the Tom Dula case. We’ve got a long way to go to finish adding all of “Women, Marriage, and the Law” to the NCDC, so please be patient with us, but I wanted to at least let you know that this was something on the horizon.
  • We’re also loading Civil War materials related to Lawrence O’Bryan Branch.

Records Move: Revenue, Secretary of State, and Water and Air Resources

It’s time for the next of our continuing series on the records now available on Saturdays; today’s post includes an assortment of units in the departments of Revenue, Secretary of State, and Water and Air Resources. The complete list of all the materials moved and now available on Saturdays is online as a PDF, but I’m breaking down the list into a series of blog posts.

If you want to read the longer, more complete histories for these departments and divisions, you can do so in our online catalog MARS. 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 on that score.

Revenue, Dept. of; Tax Research Division, 1929-1934

Prior to the establishment of the Department of Revenue, the administration of North Carolina tax law was dispersed among several state agencies. The state auditor, state Treasurer, secretary of state, commissioner of insurance, State Tax Commission, and clerks of the superior courts each had responsibilities in the listing, assessing, equalization, and collection of various taxes levied by the state.

A constitutional amendment revising the state income tax was enacted in 1919 and passed by popular vote on 2 November 1920. The State Tax Commission was initially charged with administering the new tax, but the enormity of this task added impetus to the effort to create a single agency responsible for North Carolina tax law. In March 1921 the General Assembly established the North Carolina Department of Revenue, headed by a commissioner and assisted by additional clerical staff. The first commissioner of revenue was to be appointed by the governor, with the consent of the state Senate, and serve until 1924. Succeeding commissioners were to be elected every four years.

Major revenue-related responsibilities of the state were grouped under this agency, including the general administration of state tax law, assessments, enforcement, and tax collection. Duties involving the collection of inheritance taxes and franchise and corporation tax assessments were transferred from the State Tax Commission to the department, and the agency became responsible for the administration of the state income tax.

Prior to the establishment of the Department of Revenue, the General Assembly adopted revenue acts each biennium, instructing the various revenue-related agencies of state government to collect appropriate taxes and fees. With the creation of the department in 1921, biennial revenue acts specified in detail the taxes and fees to be levied by that agency. A permanent revenue act was enacted in 1939, and, with amendments, remained in effect until 1989. Kinds of taxes included the inheritance tax, gift tax, license tax, beverage tax, franchise tax, gross earnings tax, intangible property tax, state income tax, sales tax, compensation rise tax, and motor fuels tax.

In 1941 the General Assembly authorized the separation of the statistical and research unit of the Department of Revenue from that agency and its designation as a separate state Department of Tax Research. The governor was granted the right to establish the department, which he did on 1 July 1942. In 1953 the legislature confirmed the independence of the Department of Tax Research as a separate state agency, although it continued to receive funding through and office space from the Department of Revenue. The Advisory Budget Commission was empowered to call upon the Department of Tax Research for amendments and recommendations for changes in the state’s tax laws, which proposals were to be presented to the General Assembly for action. The Executive Organization Acts of 1971 and 1973 transferred the Department of Tax Research back to the Department of Revenue, which assumed all its functions and duties.

Secretary of State, Dept. of; Annual Reports of Licensing Boards, 1956-1977, 1979, 1981

The office of secretary has existed from the time of the earliest organized government in North Carolina. The lords proprietors in 1663 ordered the creation of such an office, its holder to be appointed by themselves. After the crown re-purchased Carolina from the proprietors in 1729, the provincial secretary was appointed directly by the crown. With the coming of statehood, the Constitution of 1776 directed that he be appointed triennially by the General Assembly. A constitutional amendment of 1835 changed the triennial appointment to a biennial one. Under the Constitution of 1868 the office was made popularly elective for a four-year term, a provision that remains in effect under the present state constitution.

The Annual Reports of Licensing Boards file includes annual reports of various licensing boards and correspondence concerning the reports. May also include rosters, registers, or lists of the boards’ licensees, as well as some reports from a few independent regulatory commissions. Grouped by transferred years, then alphabetical by board, then chronological. Some of the boards included are: Alcohol Control, Certified Public Accountant Examiners, Contractors, Dental Examiners, Medical Examiners, Optometry, Pharmacy, Physical Therapists, Plumbing and Heating Contractors, Podiatry Examiners, Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, Refrigeration Examiners, Well Water Contract Examiners, Library Certification Board, Architecture, Real Estate Licensing Board, etc.

Secretary of State, Dept of; Rules and Regulations of State Agencies, 1942-1979

Reports and information from state agencies related to regulations and rules of agencies, independent regulatory commissions, and occupational licensing boards. In chronological increments of transfer, then alphabetical by agency. This function is now handled by the Office of Administrative Hearings. The rules and regulations dated after 1976 are maintained by that agency. (See RS.No. 3680).

Water and Air Resources, Dept. of, 1944-1959

In 1927 a State Stream Sanitation and Conservation Committee, as an arm of the State Board of Health, was formed to organize and direct the state’s first stream studies. Although composed of the heads and the chief engineers of the State Board of Health and the Department of Conservation and Development, the committee received scant legislative funding for activities during its first two decades. In 1945 the General Assembly formally mandated that the State Stream Sanitation and Conservation Committee would study and report on pollution in all the state’s streams. As a result of the committee’s work, the General Assembly appropriated minimum funds in 1947 for a pollution-control program. That same year Congress enacted the nation’s first Water Pollution Control Act, the basis for present-day state and federal cooperative programs.

In 1951 the General Assembly ratified the State Stream Sanitation Act, creating the renamed State Stream Sanitation Committee as an autonomous body with the State Board of Health and requiring that streams and river basins be classified and pollution control standards adopted. The act also established a set of enforcement provisions, providing a framework and legal basis for the state’s current program of water pollution control.

In 1955 the General Assembly established a Board of Water Commissioners to maintain an inventory of the state’s water resources and to conduct a program of education, planning, and research in long-range water conservation and usage. Additionally, the board was empowered to direct the allocation of water under emergency conditions. Composed of seven gubernatorial appointees, the board was to include at least one member representing each of the following interests: agriculture, municipalities, the electric power industry, and other industries. The director of the Department of Conservation and Development and the executive secretary of the State Stream Sanitation Committee were to serve ex officio on the board’s sixteen-member Advisory Committee.

In 1957 the General Assembly proposed that a state agency study the state’s water resources and advise the governor and legislature as to the laws, policies, and administrative organization needed to coordinate more effectively the state’s ongoing water research activities and utilize its water resources. Under the Department of Water Resources Act of 1959, the General Assembly established an agency to coordinate the state’s activities in order to make improvements in the methods of conserving, developing, and using water resources. The new agency was placed under the direction of a Board of Water Resources consisting of seven members appointed by the governor. Following completion of staggered terms by initial appointees, tenures were for six years. Subject to the governor’s approval, the director of the department was appointed by the board.

Under its enabling legislation, the Department of Water Resources absorbed the previous duties and functions of the Water Resources Division of the Department of Conservation and Development. Additionally, the board was directed to organize the new department into two or more units, including the Navigable Ways Division and the Water Pollution Control Division. The State Stream Sanitation Committee and its programs from the State Board of Health were moved into the latter division.

In 1967 the General Assembly enacted the Water and Air Resources Act, revising the State Stream Sanitation Act of 1951 and replacing the Department of Water Resources with the Department of Water and Air Resources. Authority for this program was to be vested in a Board of Water and Air Resources whose terms of office and power to appoint a director were identical to its predecessor. However, the new board of gubernatorial appointees was enlarged to thirteen members, including eleven members who had served on the former board and the State Stream Sanitation Committee, which was renamed the Pollution Control Committee. Under terms of the act, the board was charged with establishing standards of water and air purity and coordinating policies with other jurisdictions concerned with pollution abatement and control. The board was authorized to organize the department into the following units based on function: water pollution control, air pollution, ground water, and navigable waterways.

Under the Executive Organization Act of 1971 the Department and Board of Water and Air Resources were transferred to the newly formed Department of Natural and Economic Resources, an umbrella agency directed by a cabinet-level secretary appointed by the governor.

Includes: Correspondence; general reports; Hurricane Rehabilitation correspondence; central files: water pollution control – industrial plant sites (proposed), county correspondence, correspondence of the Hydrologic Engineers, water analysis reports, chemical water analysis, salinity data, mineral reports, United States Army Corps of Engineers’ reports, climatological reports and summaries, and surveys of Rivers, Dams, and Creeks; Waterways and Seashore Division subject files; Coastal studies; Director’s Offices files; and other records.

Records Management Gets a New Blog

[This blog post comes from Becky McGee-Lankford of our Government Records Branch.]

It is my pleasure to announce that the official Records Management blog of the State Archives of North Carolina will go live Monday, July 16th. The “G.S. 132 Files: North Carolina Public Records Blog” is our newest form of communicating and interacting with you; the custodians of North Carolina’s public records. It will be available at: Through this blog, we intend to expand on our records management services by providing you all with an information portal for news, events, training opportunities, and discussion.

Every day, the analysts and archivists at the State Archives of North Carolina answer your questions, consult you for advice, and consider the trickier issues of public records law. Now you will have the opportunity to engage with us collectively. I’m sure I’m preaching to the choir here, but we want to hear from you! As always, please feel free to email or call me with any questions, input, or concerns you have.

State Library Hosts Family History Fair Aug. 11 for ‘2nd Saturdays’

[This press release comes from Rebecca Hyman of our sister organization the State Library of North Carolina.]

State Library Hosts Family History Fair Aug. 11 for ‘2nd Saturdays’

As part of the popular 2nd Saturdays program, the State Library’s Government and Heritage Library will host its very first Family History Fair, featuring speakers, exhibitors, and genealogy experts, on Saturday, Aug. 11.  The free event, which is also part of the State Library’s ongoing 200th birthday celebration, will be held in the Department of Cultural Resources Building, 109 E. Jones Street in downtown Raleigh, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The Family History Fair will provide information and guidance for experienced family history researchers and beginners alike.  Children can learn what life was life in the 18th century, and enjoy a special children’s family history activity book.

Nearly 20 exhibitors and activities for all ages will fill the lobby of the building. Speakers and exhibitors include Library staff, genealogy professionals, State Archives staff and local family history organizations.  Click here to see a list of exhibitors. For more information call (919) 807-7450.

Featured Presentation and Activities include:

  • “We Have Stories to Tell: Family and Personal Stories” by Sylvia Payne, B.A. Sponsored by the North Carolina Humanities Council Road Scholars Program.  11 a.m.
  • “Exploring the North Carolina Digital Collections: Tips and Tricks for Genealogists and Historians,” by Lisa Gregory, Digital Collections Manager, Digital Information Management Program, Government and Heritage Library. 1 p.m.
  • “Ask the Genealogist!” The N.C. Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists will be available for free 15 minute research consultations. This service is on a first-come first-served basis. There will also be a German translator on hand to help decipher old German handwriting.
  • North Carolina Family Records Scanning Station. Visitors can bring North Carolina family Bibles and brief genealogies and letters to be scanned to be part of the N.C. Family Records Online Collection.  For questions, contact Druscie Simpson with the State Archives at (919) 807-7319.

About the State Library of North Carolina

The State Library of North Carolina builds the capacity of all libraries across the state, develops and supports access to genealogy and other specialized collections, and provides resources for the blind and physically handicapped.

About the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources

The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources annually serves more than 19 million people through its 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the N.C. Arts Council, and the State Archives. Cultural Resources champions North Carolina’s creative industry, which employs nearly 300,000 North Carolinians and contributes more than $41 billion to the state’s economy. To learn more, visit   For more about 2nd Saturdays, and other events, visit

Hi, I am employed by the State Archives of North Carolina….

My name is Francesca and I am employed by the State Archives of North Carolina. I’ve been with the State Archives since July 2008. It’s been an unbelievable four years.

In my first job as a processing assistant, I worked with the Public Services and Special Collections branches. I had the pleasure of working every Saturday in the search room. I can tell you I learned the regulars super-fast. I also worked with the correspondence unit with the Public Services. We answered questions for North Carolina and out of state residents.  I highly recommend using the Correspondence Unit to request copies of records held at the State Archives.  The research service is free to North Carolina residents, but you will have to pay for copies with a minimum charge of $2.00. The research fee for out of state residents is $20.00.

I also worked with the Non-textual Materials Unit in the Special Collections branch. I really enjoyed this job because it gave me experience answering requests from the public. Plus who doesn’t enjoy looking at images from North Carolina. There are so many photograph negatives & prints in the Photograph collection. I highly recommend checking out the images on flickr.

In March 2010, I became one of the Local Records Archivists. My position does a little of everything in the local records unit.  One of my main job duties is to be the contact person for Clerk of Courts and Register of Deeds for transfer of permanent county records. We collect county records from all 100 North Carolina counties. I also give Disaster Preparedness workshops in person. The past year I was a part of a team who gave a 4-part disaster preparedness webinar to government employees. We focused on knowing your essential records before a disaster occurs. I also work the arrangement and description of county records.  The local records unit arranges and describes the county records for use in the State Archives search room. Recently, we brought in 2010 electronic tax records. We’re really excited about our new venture into electronic records.  My job provides me with diverse responsibilities that make coming to work enjoyable.