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Archive for January, 2006

N.C. Art Towns

Three North Carolina cities — Asheville, Carrboro, and Wilmington — are listed in the fourth edition of John Villani’s The 100 Best Art Towns in America (The Countryman Press, Woodstock, Vt., 2005). Naturally, we think that there are many more communities in our state that are worth a visit from the arts-minded, but we should […]

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Western NC Reads …

It’s too late to vote now, and good thing, because it would have been a tough choice. Readers in western North Carolina had to select between these titles for the 2006 “Together We Read” program: Anthology of Regional Folk Tales, Sharyn McCrumb’s The Ballad of Frankie Silver, Lee Smith’s Fair and Tender Ladies, Gail Godwin’s […]

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Donner Party

Speaking of barbecue, the Donner Party is in the news again. The News & Observer recently ran a story entitled “Donners May Not Have Been Cannibals After All.” Why are we mentioning this here? It turns out that the most famous would-be man-eaters in American history were native Tar Heels. George and Jacob Donner were […]

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BBQ PhD

We’re excited to see barbecue working its way into the academy — and not just in the dining halls. The North Carolina Literary Review may have started the trend when, in its 1997 issue, it listed William Harmon in the masthead as “Barbecue Editor.” The October 2005 North Carolina Historical Review (shown at left with […]

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Book of Books

The death of the book (and the library, too) has been proclaimed over and over again in recent years, but a trip to western North Carolina will show that the age-old art of making books by hand is alive and well. We’ve been looking through The Penland Book of Handmade Books, a collaboration between Lark […]

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Robert Ruark Revisited

North Carolina novelist Robert Ruark, who died in 1965, continues to have a small but devoted following. The Wilmington native and UNC alumnus is perhaps best known for his novel The Old Man and the Boy (1957). He was an active sportsman and traveller, and his devotion to these themes in his work meant that […]

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New Godwin Titles

Random House has just published a couple of new books by Asheville-based writer Gail Godwin: Queen of the Underworld, a novel, and The Making of a Writer: Journals, 1961-1963. Both are reviewed in Friday’s Charlotte Observer.

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Wilmington Report in NYT

The recently-released report of the 1898 Wilmington Race Riot Commission continues to receive national attention. Yesterday’s New York Times included an editorial by Brent Staples entitled “When Democracy Died in Wilmington, N.C.”

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Today’s News & Observer has a story about the tragic explosion at the Carolina Coal Company mine in Coal Glen, N.C. on May 27, 1925. There is more information about the explosion, and about the history of coal mining at the site, on the North Carolina Collection’s “This Month in North Carolina History” page.

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Library Regulations

We recently came across this list of library regulations from the Charlotte Social Library, published around 1820. We’re still wondering how they enforced the “wet finger” rule.

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