Mercy Heritage Center to host SAA workshop

Contributed by Emily Reed

Mercy Heritage Center, located in Belmont, N.C., is hosting an SAA workshop titled: Fundamentals of Project Management for Archivists #1719 on Monday, September 26, 2016. This workshop is also a part of the SAA Arrangement & Description (A&D) Certificate Program.

Workshop Description

Archivists and information specialists are involved in a variety of projects every day, from small projects like developing a new procedures manual to large projects like digitizing a collection. But project management methodologies are not normally included in formal education or many archival education programs.  This workshop will help individuals acquire the basic knowledge and tools necessary for managing successful projects.

After completing this workshop, you’ll be able to:

  • Understand the project life cycle from initiation to completion;
  • Utilize effective project management tools and techniques;
  • Evaluate project outcomes and disseminate project information; and
  • Demonstrate how positive personnel management adds to a successful project.

Who should attend?

This is an introductory workshop that can also be taken as a refresher course on project management. Project team members who want to become more active in – and achieve a better understanding of the workings of – their own projects are also welcome.

For more details and registration information visit

For questions, contact Kathryn Oosterhuis, Director/Archivist at Mercy Heritage Center.

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Mini-zine about doing archival research

Kelly Wooten of the David M. Rubinstein Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Duke University created a mini-zine entitled "How to be a Super Researcher (Or at least fake it)."  It has tips on everything from planning your travel to an archive to taking good notes to practicing self-care while you’re there.  The posting includes a video showing researchers how to print, fold, and cut their own mini-zine for easy transport.

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Manuscript collection of service-based experiential learning pioneer available online from Elon

Contributed by Chrystal Carpenter

A new collection containing hundreds of documents from Robert L. Sigmon, a nationally recognized pioneer on the forefront of service-based experiential learning, has been digitized and is available online via the Elon Belk Library Archives and Special Collections.

Sigmon devoted his career to building quality experiential education and service-learning. Born in Lincoln County, North Carolina, his journey began after graduating from Duke University in 1957, when he went to West Pakistan as a short-term Methodist missionary and managed a hostel for boys from the lowest caste families in the area. After returning to the United States three years later, Sigmon earned a Master of Divinity degree in 1964 and continued his work with economically and racially oppressed communities in the Southeast. Since 1991 he has consulted with national, state, and local programs supporting service-based experiential learning in communities.

The online manuscript collection reflects the period from 1962 to 2006 and includes Sigmon’s teachings, research, and insight into the field of service learning. “The conceptual and program design descriptions along with the stories in this collection represent a late 20th century glimpse into service-based experiential learning practices,” says Sigmon, who defines service learning as what occurs when there is a balance between learning goals and service outcomes. “My hope is that community leaders, academic leaders, and young people can find something in these papers to build on as you connect goals of overcoming oppression, poverty, and hardships in communities while promoting service-based experiential learning.”

Chrystal Carpenter, the university archivist, says she hopes the collection will “give students a starting point in order to understand how service learning started and how it’s evolved.”

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2016 Basic Film Preservation Grant

Contributed by Matthew Peek

The Military Collection at the State Archives of North Carolina in Raleigh has received a National Film Preservation Foundation 2016 Basic Film Preservation Grant for the preservation, digitization, reformatting, and color restoration of two original amateur World War II films shot in the South Pacific between summer 1943 and summer 1945. The films, which comprise the Daniel Dortch Price Films, WWII Papers, in the Military Collection, were donated by the WWII Army Air Force veteran who was given the films by a commanding officer when his Air Force supply unit left Guadalcanal for New Guinea and the Philippines. Price conducted an oral history interview with the Military Collection in December 2015, in which he describes the living conditions and activities in the locations featured in the films.

One black-and-white 16mm film and one color 16mm film—both silent films—include rare scenes of the landscape of an unidentified island(s); American military camp scenes in tents and soldiers doing laundry; footage of American aircraft on dirt runways; island natives; military personnel traveling by jeep across an island; military reconnaissance of the islands by photographers; washed up debris from a plane or ship on the beach; and naked American military personnel walking on the beach. The footage offers a rare look into the daily life of American military personnel in the South Pacific in a critical period of WWII. Work on the grant will begin in July 2016, with public programming and educational programming to be developed around the footage once it is digitized.

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Busy Times at ECU

Contributed by Dale Sauter

The Rhem/Schwarzmann Prize for Recognition of Student Research was established by Mrs. Ann Schwarzmann to honor William and Emily Rhem and Theodore and Ann Schwarzmann. First awarded in 2009,  the Rhem/Schwarzmann Prize annually recognizes outstanding ECU undergraduate student research based largely on primary sources held by the J. Y. Joyner Librarys Special Collections. The 2016 first place winner is Adam Caldwell. Adam graduated from ECU last year with a degree in political science and history and is currently serving as the eastern North Carolina regional representative for U.S. Senator Thom Tillis. His paper was written for History 4000 and is entitled, “A Senator from East Carolina: John P. East, Jesse Helms, and the 1980 United States Senate Election in North Carolina.” The second place winner is William Cheek. William graduated from ECU with a B.A. in history and a North Carolina studies minor. His paper was written for History 5135 and is entitled, “ECU Riots and Protests: A Tradition of Student Activism.”

The Langford North Carolina Collection has made a number of new acquisitions.

  • Dilettante Book Club Records. This collection contains the records of the Dilettante Book Club founded in 1961 by members of the East Carolina College Faculty Wives Club in Greenville, N.C. Included are minutes (1961-1976, 1996-2012), financial records (1970-2012), correspondence (1975-2015), and yearbooks (1961-2011, some missing).
  • Robert “Bob” Boyd Robinson III Papers. This collection (1823-1999) contains the papers of Robert “Bob” Boyd Robinson III (1948-1999) of Garysburg, N.C. Included are original documents related to Andrew Jackson Ellis and other Ellis family members, such as correspondence (1843, 1854, and 1861-1865), an 1884 invitation and order of exercises for Howard University’s commencement, memoriam letters (1912-1913), and photographs (large tintype, cartes de visite). Other documents include Boyd family Bible records and a 1917 publication titled, Ceremonies Attending Dedication of the Virginia Memorial on the Battlefield of Gettysburg. Genealogical notes, clippings, correspondence, family charts, and Bible record transcriptions concern the Palmer, Gary, Ellis, Coker, Kee, Turner, Boyd, Robinson, Read, Ricks, Purnell, Crossland, and Stephenson families of northeastern North Carolina and southeastern Virginia. Other documents relate to Robinsons involvement with groups such as the Society of the Cincinnati, Sons of the Revolution in the State of North Carolina, the Sons of Confederate Veterans, the Military Order of the Stars and Bars, among others; and his column in The Daily Herald newspaper of Roanoke Rapids, N.C. titled, “Confederate Letter.”
  • Red Banks Primitive Baptist Church Records. This collection includes a ledger book containing records (August 1882-December 1996) of the Red Banks Primitive Baptist Church located at the intersection of Fourteenth Street and Fire Tower Road in Greenville, N.C. The church was founded in 1758, but the present building was built in 1893. Included are the Church Covenant, adopted December 24, 1791; the Rules of Conference, adopted February 11, 1792; minutes of the Conference meetings (1882-1996), which also mention when members joined, left, or died; lists of some of the members with identifying information related to membership status; and loose papers. Also included are two issues of Zion’s Landmark (December 15, 1913, and April 15, 1916).
  •  Charles J. O’Hagan Papers—Addition. These papers contain many letters (1840s -1880s) written and received by Dr. Charles James O’Hagan (1821-1900), and his wife and daughters. Dr. O’Hagan emigrated from Londonderry, Ireland in 1842, taught school near Greenville, N.C., earned his medical degree, and practiced medicine in the area. He served in the Confederate Army as a surgeon for the 1st N.C. Cavalry and the 35th N.C. Infantry, and many of the letters are from those years. He returned to his medical practice after the war and served as mayor and commissioner for Greenville and as president of the N.C. State Board of Medical Examiners and the N.C. State Medical Society. Later photographs and letters also concern the related Laughinghouse and Grimes families of Pitt County, North Carolina.
  •  Lynndale Garden Club Collection. Includes seven notebooks containing meeting minutes, executive board minutes, treasurer reports, newsletters, installation ceremony information, and yearbooks for the Lynndale Garden Club of Greenville, N.C., for the years 1974 through 2016. Also included is a photograph album containing photographs, clippings, newsletters, and brochures (from events attended) for 2000 and 2001.
  •  Rebecca T. Jamieson Letter. A missionary letter written February 17, 1841, by Rebecca Townsend Jamieson, a wife and mother, who was living with her husband and children in Subothro (now Sabathu) in the Himalaya Mountains in Northern India. In it she describes in good detail the experiences and the hardships during the previous two to three years of their missionary work in Shohorunpore and Subothro, India. She was also very sick during part of the time and she gave birth to three children, including one child who died at the age of eight days.
  •  General Frank A. Armstrong Papers—Addition. Armstrong’s handwritten diary documents his firsthand accounts of the German Air Blitz in England in 1941. Also included are a few handwritten notes related to the war, as well as one typed letter from Armstrong in 1942 that starts off “Dear Diary” but does not appear to be in his autobiography or Armstrong’s other memoir. It is very descriptive in terms of what is happening strategically in the war. Armstrong was born in Hobgood, N.C. His grandson, Frank Armstrong IV, resides in California but found this original diary while on a recent trip back to North Carolina to visit relatives. Wake the Sleeping Giant [ca. 1960] is the autobiography of Armstrong as told to William E. Hickinbotham. The account relates his experiences as an air cadet in the late twenties and comments on early air training methods. In recounting his early flying career, Armstrong describes flying as a U.S. Army mail pilot for the U.S. Post Office. The autobiography incorporates a diary maintained during his tenure in England as a military observer (1941), and contains a lucid description of British life during the German Air Blitz. Some overlap exists between this account and his memoir concerning the VIIIth Bomber Command. This account describes Armstrongs command and training of the 97th Heavy Bombardment Group, the first American bomber crew to fly a mission over Europe; the 306th Heavy Bombardment Group, which flew the first daylight raid against Germany; the 46th Bomb Operational Training Wing; and the 315th Bombardment Wing (Very Heavy), which as a part of the XXIst Bomber Command bombarded targets in Japan. Armstrongs postwar account includes an attempted record-breaking flight from Hokkaido, Japan to Washington, D.C., as well as an account of a pioneering flight with Bernt Balchen from Alaska, over the North Pole, to Norway (1949). Armstrong also discusses the novel and film, Twelve O’Clock High, the basis of which were his wartime bomber experiences; his tenure as commander of the Second Air Force and the training of crews for the Strategic Air Command; and the SAC-Russian competition for strategical hegemony. As commander-in-chief of the Alaskan Command, Armstrong criticizes Alaskan defense strategy, proposes solutions, and warns of the dangers of Communism.







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Passing of SNCA member

Contributed by Kenneth Marks

Sue Marks of Apex died January 14, 2016.  She was the historian at Holy Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church in Raleigh.  She was a member of SNCA until she became unable to attend meetings 3 years ago.

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News from the East Carolina University Archives

Contributed by Dale Sauter

Special Collections recently welcomed Andrew Rabkin in the position of Digital Archivist.

In 2014, the Special Collections Division at Joyner Library was the recipient of a National Historical Publications and Records Commission grant to process the archives from the Institute of Outdoor Theatre. The project archivist, Ashley Williams, designed a comprehensive exhibit on the records. The People’s Theatre: The Institute of Outdoor Theatre and North Carolina Productions will be on display from January 2016 through August 2016 on Joyner’s 4th floor, and digitized images from the collection can be viewed through ECU’s Digital Collections portal.

Special Collections has also made some notable recent acquisitions:

  • “Florida et Regiones Vicinae” map: 1630 map of southeastern United States drawn by Joannes De Laet of Leiden and hand-colored.
  • Lucius W. Johnson Papers: Unpublished autobiography and personal papers of Rear Admiral Lucius W. Johnson (1882-1968), a distinguished Navy surgeon, who was awarded the Navy Cross for his relief efforts in the Dominican Republic during Dictator Rafael Trujillo’s reign, coordinated construction of the National Naval Medical Center outside of Washington, D.C., oversaw the development of Naval Mobile Base Hospital No. 1 in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and is credited with introducing the Daiquiri to America.
  • Lenwood Coye Lewis Collection: This collection contains the book Adolf Hitlaer: Bilder aus dem Leben des Fuhrers. It is a Nazi propaganda biography of Adolf Hitler (published in 1936) in the form of an album with text that includes 188 black and white and 5 colored mounted cigarette cards produced by Cigaretten-Bilderdienst. Also included are 2 packs of additional cigarette cards.
  • “Der Kriegsschauplatz im Stillen Ozean” map: This ca. 1942 map drawn by Berliner Lokalanzeiger and published in Berlin, Germany, documents the Pacific Theater during World War II. Noted are the regions controlled by the British, United States, and Japanese armed forces, the regions attacked by the Japanese, and distances within the Pacific Theater.
  • Henry Berry Lowrie (Lowry) Papers: This collection contains 8 documents (1864-1872) relating to the Lowrie (Lowry) Gang of outlaws based in Robeson County, N.C. , who resisted the Confederate Home Guard during the Civil War, lived off the land, and harbored escaped slaves and Confederate and Union deserters. Included are a Grand Jury indictment (1864) of three “free negroes” (two have the last name of Lowrie) for theft, a summons (1868) for the sheriff of Robeson County and for the sheriff of Columbus County (1869) to bring Henry B. Lowery to court to be tried for murder, an affidavit (1872) by the prosecution asking for removal of the trial of Thomas Brady for the murder of Stephen Locklier from Robeson County to another county because Locklier was seen as being “in sympathy” with the “Lowerie Outlaws,” and four receipts (1872) for payment to Grand Jury members in the trial of Thomas Brady.
  • O’Hagan Letters: Dr. Charles James O’Hagan (1821-1900) emigrated from Londonderry, Ireland in 1842. He taught school near Greenville, then earned his medical degree and practiced medicine in the area. Dr. O’Hagan served in the Confederate Army as a surgeon for the 1st N.C. Cavalry and the 35th N.C. Infantry, and many of the letters are from the Civil War era. Dr. O’Hagan returned to his medical practice after the war and also served as mayor and commissioner for the City of Greenville. Dr. O’Hagan was president of the N.C. State Board of Medical Examiners and the N.C. State Medical Society. Married twice, his first wife was Eliza Forrest of Greene County, and his second wife was Elvira Clark of Pitt County. The O’Hagan materials complement several existing manuscript collections owned by Joyner Library concerning the O’Hagan, Laughinghouse, and Grimes families. For more information about those collections, see the following finding aids: and The most recent owner of the letters was William G. O’Quinn of Durham.

Lastly, Christine M. Shea, a beloved ECU faculty member tenured in the College of Education’s Department of Special Education, Social Foundations and Research, passed away on March 25, 2015. Dr. Shea left her extensive book collection to Joyner Library. In addition to this generous bequest, Dr. Shea’s family requested that memorial gifts be designated for Joyner Library. Recently, Dr. Shea’s six brothers and sisters, as well as several of their spouses, traveled to Greenville to present a check for $1,000 to Jan Lewis, Director of the J. Y. Joyner Library. While at the library, they viewed a display of their sister’s publications and enjoyed a tour of the Teaching Resources Center given by Teaching Resources Center head, Alan Bailey.


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WCU Project to Make Finding Aids Accessible Online

Contributed by Liz Skene

Until this year, Western Carolina University library users were only able to browse the manuscript collections held by Hunter Library’s Special Collections department by visiting in person or contacting them via phone or e-mail. Now, thanks to the work of three library departments, over 100 of these finding aids are available online.

The library’s Special Collections department, the cataloging department, and the Digital Initiatives unit are working collaboratively to make this material available online. The work involves migrating information from Microsoft Word documents into ArchivesSpace. Additionally, when digitized versions of the materials are available, staff are linking the description to the corresponding item in the library’s digital collections. The library is continuing work on this project and hopes to double the amount of finding aids online this year, with an eventual goal of getting nearly 600 online.

Questions about the project can be directed to Elizabeth Skene, Digital Initiatives Librarian,

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New Online Exhibit on African Americans at UNCG: A Collaboration between the University Libraries and Google

Contributed by Erin Lawrimore

Over 200 records from the University Pete_and_ZekeArchives at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG) can be viewed online as the result of a new partnership between the Google Cultural Institute and the UNCG University Libraries. In February, staff at the Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives and the Libraries’ Electronic Resources and Information Technologies departments uploaded the records and built the online exhibit African Americans at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 1892-1971, as part of the Google Cultural Institute’s Black History Month celebration.

NeoBlackSociety_lounge_1971This exhibit traces the history of African American faculty, staff, and students at UNCG from its opening as the State Normal and Industrial School in 1892 until 1971. Through digitized photographs and documents, as well as audio clips from oral history interviews conducted as part of the African American Institutional Memory Project, viewers can learn more about African American employees on campus prior to desegregation, Jim Crow-era debates over the use of facilities by African Americans, the fight to integrate the student body, student involvement in the sit-ins and protest movements of the early 1960s, the founding of the Neo-Black Society in 1968, and the hiring of the first African American faculty members.

The Google Cultural Institute and its partners are putting the world’s cultural treasures at the fingertips of Internet users and are building tools that allow the cultural sector to share more of its diverse heritage online. The Google Cultural Institute has partnered with more than 1,000 institutions, giving a platform to over 250,000 pieces of artwork and a total of 6 million photos, videos, manuscripts, and other documents representing art, culture, and history. You can learn more about the broader project in this Huffington Post article.

If you have questions about the exhibit, please contact Erin Lawrimore, University Archivist, at

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Archives Leadership Institute

Congratulations to the SNCA members who will be participating in the 2016 Archives Leadership Institute:

  • Gene Hyde -- UNC Asheville - Head of Special Collections & University Archivist
  • Dawn Schmitz -- UNC Charlotte - Interim Head of Special Collections
  • Kelly Wooten -- Duke University - Research Services & Collection Development Librarian

The detailed press release can be viewed here.

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