Robert V. N. Brown papers, 1958-1999.

Creator: Brown, Robert V. N.
Collection number: 5312
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Abstract: Robert V. N. Brown (1933-2006) was born in Belle Harbor, N.Y., and grew up in the Bronx, N.Y. In 1958, Brown moved to Chapel Hill, N.C., to study southern history at the University of North Carolina. In 1961, Brown began publishing the literary magazine “Reflections from Chapel Hill.” In 1963-1964, at the height of the local civil rights movement, Brown published “The Chapel Hill Conscience,” a newsletter of the Committee for Open Business. His role in the Chapel Hill civil rights movement is chronicled in John Ehle’s book “The Free Men” (1965). In 1966, Brown, along with writer Leon Rooke, began publishing the alternative newspaper “The North Carolina Anvil,: which ran until 1983, when Brown retired from publishing. Brown also operated a job printing studio called Buffalo Printing during the 1970s and 1980s to support his other activities. He died on 5 February 2006 in Hillsborough, N.C. The collection consists of subject files, letters to the editor, business and financial records, and other materials that document Robert V. N. Brown’s work in newspaper publishing, especially as the publisher of the alternative weekly newspaper “The North Carolina Anvil.” Subject files include correspondence, notes, writings, clippings, and other materials primarily relating to the operations of “The North Carolina Anvil” as well as notes and correspondence relating to the literary magazine “Reflections from Chapel Hill” published by Brown, 1961-1964. Letters to the editor consist of correspondence created and received by co-editors of “The North Carolina Anvil,” Brown and Joel Bulkley, 1967-1982. Among the correspondents are politicians, social activists, university professors, writers, fellow publishers, and many others. Correspondents include Mary Barnett Gilson, Bill Hicks, Joe Hackney, Daniel Okun, and Kemp Nye. Business and financial records consist of materials relating to the business operations of “The North Carolina Anvil” and Brown’s other publications and projects. Also included are personal planners, pamphlets and other printed materials, copies of the items published by Brown, printing plates, digital scans of photographs of Brown with his publishing staff and other photographs, and other materials.

Repository: Southern Historical Collection