Tag Archives: State Archives of North Carolina

Lunch and Learn: Finding Your Ancestors

Lunch and Learn flyerOn May 10-13, the National Genealogical Society (NGS) will hold its annual conference in Raleigh. To help participating genealogists prepare for their visit, the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources will host two Facebook Live sessions on its Facebook page. The “Lunch and Learn: Finding Your Ancestors” series will take place over two days:

  • Wednesday, May 3 at 12 noon – Tune in to hear about genealogical research at the Government and Heritage Library, part of the State Library of North Carolina.
  • Thursday, May 4 at 12 noon – Learn about resources available both in the Search Room and online from the State Archives of North Carolina.

The State Archives has also updated the information under the genealogical research tab on this blog in preparation for NGS 2017. If you have any additional questions about your upcoming visit to the State Archives, please contact us.

Treasures of Carolina Exhibit Closes July 31

Tracing of a baby's hand from a letter written by Martha Hendley Poteet to Francis Marion Poteet, June 16, 1864. Poteet-Dickson Letters, Private Collections.

Tracing of a baby’s hand from a letter written by Martha Hendley Poteet to Francis Marion Poteet, June 16, 1864. Poteet-Dickson Letters, Private Collections.

This weekend is your last chance to see some of the State Archives’ treasures while they are on display at the North Carolina Museum of History. The exhibit Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives will close after July 31. The exhibit has been at the museum since October 24, 2015 and illustrates the history of North Carolina and the role of the State Archives in preserving and providing access to both modern records and historical materials. The exhibit includes items such as:

  • The earliest will known to exist in North Carolina, recorded in 1665 by Mary Fortsen. It is unusual because female property owners were extremely rare in the 1600s.
  • The hand-drawn map used as evidence during the 1867 trial of Tom Dula, who was indicted and hanged for murdering Laura Foster. Dula’s fate is told in the popular ballad “Tom Dooley.”
  • A Civil War letter from Martha A. E. Henley Poteet to her husband, Francis Marion Poteet, who was away at war. She enclosed a cutout of her 4-week-old daughter’s hand with the request “write to Me what to name her.”
  • A 1903 copy of the North Carolina Constitutional Reader. In 1901 rules were enacted to prevent illiterate African Americans from voting, and this book was published to help African Americans read the Constitution in case they were questioned at the polls when trying to vote.
  • Information on GIS and website preservation.
  • Audio recordings of World War I soldiers’ oral histories.
  • North Carolina’s official copy of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote, and 26th Amendment which allowed U. S. citizens 18 years and older to vote.

To learn more, visit the exhibit page on the North Carolina Museum of History website.

"Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives of North Carolina" exhibit flyer

“Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives of North Carolina” exhibit flyer

State Archives on North Carolina Weekend

The Collecting Carolina segment on the State Archives of North Carolina features many archival resources including the map collection.

The Collecting Carolina segment on the State Archives of North Carolina features many archival resources including the map collection.

The State Archives of North Carolina was featured on the UNC-TV program North Carolina Weekend last week. The Collecting Carolina segment includes an introduction to genealogical and historical research at the State Archives, several of the treasures from the vault collection, and the State Archives conservation lab. It is available online on the North Carolina Weekend website and UNC-TV PBS video.

UNC-TV is watched by more than 4 million viewers each week, and almost 75,000 members send in their contributions each year to keep UNC-TV on the air. During 2014-2015, UNC-TV and its partners produced more than 340 hours of original local programming, making it a leader in the public television industry in that respect. UNC-TV has received 7 Regional Emmy Awards already this year and many other honors for its programming and services over the years. UNC-TV’s programming reaches into 13 million homes including all of North Carolina, into portions of Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee and South Carolina.

Announcing Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives

Photograph of Dr. Chase Ambler, nature enthusiast, stands on a cliff in 1910. From the Appalachian National Park Association, General Records, Western Regional Archives.

Dr. Chase Ambler, nature enthusiast, stands on a cliff in 1910; from the Appalachian National Park Association, General Records, Western Regional Archives. This item is among many that will be included in “Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives.”

The Friends of the Archives is pleased to announce an upcoming exhibit on the documents, history, and purpose of the State Archives of North Carolina. Treasures of Carolina: Stories from the State Archives will be open at the North Carolina Museum of History October 24, 2015 – June 19, 2016. Through a selection of documents from the Archives vault, unique letters, historical photographs, county and state agency records, posters, and digital media, the exhibit will illustrate the ways the State Archives documents state and county government, provides evidence of civil rights, and preserves the history and culture of North Carolina.

Sponsored by the Friends of the Archives, the exhibit will highlight rarely displayed archival materials, such as the 1663 Carolina Charter, North Carolina’s copy of the Bill of Rights, and a map dating from 1584, the oldest in the Archives’ collection. It will include fascinating glimpses into the lives of famous and not-so-famous North Carolinians through the documents they left behind, such as: a hand-drawn map from the Tom Dula murder trial; the 1665 will of Mary Fortsen, the oldest will known to exist in North Carolina; a rare 1903 African American publication created in response to changes in voter registration laws; the naturalization petition for Chang and Eng Bunker; and World War I photographs from North Carolina soldiers and sailors. The exhibit will also touch on current initiatives to capture and preserve online resources such as social media, GIS data, email, and government websites. In addition to materials from the collection in Raleigh, the exhibit will include items from the Archives’ regional repositories, the Outer Banks History Center (Manteo) and Western Regional Archives (Asheville).

While some materials will be available throughout the duration of the exhibit, some of the rarest items will only be on display for a short time. These materials include:

  • October 24 – October 27: North Carolina’s copy of the Bill of Rights;
  • October 28 – February 7: 11th Amendment and James Iredell’s diary;
  • February 8 – February 14: 1663 Carolina Charter;
  • February 15 – June 14: Signature documents including items signed by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, and Buckminster Fuller, among others.
  • June 15 – June 19: North Carolina’s copy of the Bill of Rights.

If you would like to support this event through a one-time donation, please visit the Friends exhibit web page for more information. Funding supplied by donors will be used for document conservation and framing, exhibit preparation, and informational materials.

About the Friends of the Archives

The Friends of the Archives is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization formed in 1977 whose mission is to support, promote, and strengthen the collections, services, and programs of the State Archives of North Carolina. The mission of the State Archives is to collect, preserve, and provide access to North Carolina’s documentary history and culture. Learn more at http://archives.ncdcr.gov/GetInvolved/Friends.aspx.

Preservation Week Quiz: Saturday’s Question of the Day

As part of Preservation Week 2015, the State Archives is partnering with the State Library of North Carolina on a Preservation Week Question of the Day – a series of questions related to the preservation of materials both physical and electronic. See the State Library’s blog to see their question of the day posts.

What kind of computer can open the files on this 3.5” floppy disk from 1990?

Dysan floppy disk

  1. Any modern Windows or Mac computer, as long as you buy an external floppy drive.
  2. A Windows computer from around 1990 running MS-DOS and having a working floppy drive.
  3. A modern Windows computer with special hardware installed inside the computer, plus an external floppy drive, plus special software to emulate a 1990 computer.
  4. There is no computer that can read the disk, because the insides of the disk have definitely deteriorated too much by now.
  5. There’s no way to tell. You can’t be certain about whether the data has survived or what it will take to access the files until you start experimenting with different hardware and software.

Do you know the answer?  Find out below the cut.

Continue reading

Preservation Week Quiz: Monday’s Question of the Day

As part of Preservation Week 2015, the State Archives is partnering with the State Library of North Carolina on a Preservation Week Question of the Day – a series of questions related to the preservation of materials both physical and electronic. Visit the State Library’s blog to see their question of the day posts.

When CDs first went on the market, sellers often claimed that the disks could last up to 200 years. Today, experts estimate that a CD will last how long if left on the shelf?

  1. 50-75 years
  2. 30-50 years
  3. 10-30 years
  4. 5-10 years

Do you know the answer?  Find out below.

Continue reading

State Library and State Archives Promote Preservation Week: April 26 – May 2

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

RALEIGH, N.C. – The State Library of North Carolina and State Archives are celebrating the ways they help preserve information whether created physically or digitally. It’s part of National Preservation Week, April 26 – May 2, which highlights the role libraries, archives and other cultural institutions play in preserving our information. A week of activities await you.

Preservation Week Flyer image

Preservation Week 2015 flyer – click on the image to view a larger version.

A social media campaign, daily preservation trivia question, exhibits and other activities are available. Discover activities from the State Archives here and from the State Library here. The State Archives and State Library are located at 109 E. Jones St., where they will offer Preservation Week programs on site:

Preservation Exhibit at the State Archives of North Carolina

The State Archives preserves historically significant materials by preventing or slowing their deterioration and saving key information. The recently conserved 1864 payroll of Company G, 38th NC Infantry, Confederate States of America, will be displayed in the State Archives Search Room. The exhibit highlights the extensive conservation to the payroll and also preservation techniques used for paper based materials. The State Archives is open Tuesday-Friday 8:00 a.m.-5:30 p.m., and Saturday 9:00 a.m.-2 p.m.

Government and Heritage Library’s Museum of Obsolete Media

Digital and analog media deteriorate too. They become so out of date, or obsolete, that modern computers can’t access or display their information. Visit the library’s display of obsolete media including floppy disks, ZIP drives, 8 track tapes and other out of date hardware. The exhibit will be in the Government and History Research Room on the first floor of the Government and Heritage Library. It is open Monday-Friday, 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

April 30 – Webinar: Digital Preservation for Individuals and Small Groups Sponsored by Gaylord

The Government and Heritage Library and State Archives will host a viewing of an online webinar led by the Library of Congress’s Mike Ashenfelder. Join the staff viewing in room 208, 2:00-3:00 p.m.

Webinar Description: The greatest threat to preserving digital files is obsolescence as files on older media become unusable. This webinar will help you understand what it takes to preserve commonly used digital files such as photographs, recordings, videos and documents. Learn some simple, practical tips and tools to help you master this digital challenge and preserve your digital materials. Find more information here.

Follow the State Library on Facebook, Twitter and blogs for preservation focused posts and the daily preservation trivia question. Find the Government and Heritage Library at http://ghlblog.org, https://facebook.com/ncghl and on Twitter: @ncpedia and @digpress411.

Find the State Archives History for All the People blog at https://ncarchives.wordpress.com, and at https://www.facebook.com/pages/State-Archives-of-North-Carolina/119904548027450?fref=ts and on Twitter @NCArchives and @WebArchivist.

For additional information please call (919) 807-7454. The State Library of North Carolina and the State Archives are within the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources.

About the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources 

The N.C. Department of Cultural Resources (NCDCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s cultural resources to build the social, cultural and economic future of North Carolina. Led by Secretary Susan Kluttz, NCDCR’s mission is to enrich lives and communities by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history and libraries in North Carolina that will spark creativity, stimulate learning, preserve the state’s history and promote the creative economy. NCDCR was the first state organization in the nation to include all agencies for arts and culture under one umbrella.

Through arts efforts led by the N.C. Arts Council, the N.C. Symphony and the N.C. Museum of Art, NCDCR offers the opportunity for enriching arts education for young and old alike and spurring the economic stimulus engine for our state’s communities. NCDCR’s Divisions of Archives and Records, Historical Resources, State Historic Sites and State History Museums preserve, document and interpret North Carolina’s rich cultural heritage to offer experiences of learning and reflection. NCDCR’s State Library of North Carolina is the principal library of state government and builds the capacity of all libraries in our state to develop and to offer access to educational resources through traditional and online collections including genealogy and resources for people who are blind or have physical disabilities.

NCDCR 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. NCDCR champions our state’s creative industry that accounts for more than 300,000 jobs and generates nearly $18.5 billion in revenues. For more information, please call (919) 807-7300 or visit www.ncdcr.gov.