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Archive for the ‘From the Stacks’ Category

This what if began with a question found in the December 6, 1877 edition of The Farmer and Mechanic, a weekly paper published in Raleigh. Dr. W. Haw, an “analytical chemist” of Oswego, N.Y., wanted to know whether the poppy species that yields opium could be planted in the South. I resided a long time […]

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The stack of Bibles on which Governor Pat McCrory took the oath of office earlier today included one believed to be the oldest associated with a North Carolina family in the state. The Durant Bible, as the volume is commonly known, was with George Durant, a 25-year-old Englishman, when he arrived on American shores about […]

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A reference request today led me to this editorial that Jesse Helms penned for the January 1959 issue of the Tar Heel Banker. The magazine was a monthly publication from the North Carolina Bankers Association. Helms served as executive director of the group for much of the 1950s and, in that capacity, also served as […]

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Hannukah, the Jewish festival of lights, offered pale competition for Christmas—puny candles against a dazzling tree, ‘Rock of Ages’ against the tyranny of carols and decorations that took over the stores, the radio, the schools, and the imagination of all my friends. Parents billed Hannukah as ‘better than Christmas,’ an unintentional error that placed a […]

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Seen on the sea, no sign; no sign, no sign In the black firs and terraces of hills Ragged in mist. The cone narrows, snow Glares from the bleak walls of a crater. No. Again the houses jerk like paper, turn, And the surf streams by: a port of toys Is starred with its fires […]

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I found this impressive Thanksgiving Day menu in the December 3, 1911 issue of The Charlotte News. The feast was served to a group of Charlotte businessmen who traveled to Savannah as guests of the Indiana Refining Company, which was engaged at the time in applying “liquid asphalt binder” on the macadam roads in and […]

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Edenton kicks off its anniversary celebrations today at noon with the ringing of the Chowan County Courthouse bells 300 times. The town dates its beginning to the passage of an act in the colonial Assembly calling for “building a Court house to hold the Assembly in, at the fork of Queen Ann’s Creek commonly called […]

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While paper ballots haven’t gone the way of the Edsel, you’d be hard pressed to find ones like those used in North Carolina’s elections in the 19th century. As Douglas W. Jones, co-author of Broken Ballots: Will Your Vote Count notes in his “Brief Illustrated History of Voting”, the first paper ballots were slips provided […]

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Benjamin Filene’s curiosity about a children’s book in the North Carolina Collection led him in search of the story behind its creation and the individuals portrayed in it. And this weekend Filene, an historian at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, will share his discoveries during a presentation at the Orange County Public Library […]

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Here’s a story you’re not likely to hear as the announcers rattle on during Saturday’s UNC-Duke football game. Among the schools’ past 98 meetings on the gridiron, there have been only two games that ended with both teams scoreless – in 1930 and in 1931. Fans’ (or at least two reporters’) displeasure with the 0-0 […]

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