The Night Before Christmas at the Phi Mu House

In the winter of 1965, the Gamma Lambda Chapter of Phi Mu Sorority had moved into their new house at 211 Henderson Street.  The move was festive and joyful.  To celebrate the season, the sisters wrote their own version of the poem The Night Before Christmas. 

We came across the poem in the scrapbook that the Gamma Lambda chapter recently loaned to us. The clatter that awoke the sisters in this poem, however, was not from reindeer on the roof but from “caroling boys with their bottles of cheer!”

Phi Mu's rendition of "The Night Before Christmas," 1965. Click for a larger version.

Phi Mu’s rendition of “The Night Before Christmas,” 1965. Click for a larger version.

Happy holidays from everyone at University Archives and Records Management Services!

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Happy Holidays from UARMS!

(UNC Hospital Volunteer Association Christmas Party, 1995)

(UNC Hospital Volunteer Association Christmas Party, 1995)

We hope you all have a festive, fun, and restful holiday break! Wilson Library will be closed December 24-26.

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December 18th: A Mandate from the State, and the Chartering of UNC

UNC Chapel Hill's historic marker which proclaims its status as the first state university.

The historic marker that proclaims UNC’s status as the first state university.

December 18th is an important day in both United States and North Carolina history. Several important historical events have happened on this day.

For example, the Mayflower docked at modern-day Plymouth, Massachusetts on December 18th, 1620.

But at University Archives, December 18th is important for two different reasons. One, the mandate for a state-run university in North Carolina, and two, the chartering of the University of North Carolina.

After the Declaration of Independence was signed, North Carolina ratified its first constitution, the Constitution of 1776, on December 18th, 1776. It was in this document that the provincial congress first called for a state-run university.

Article 41 of the Constitution of 1776 set forth the following mandate:

“…that a school or schools shall be established by the legislature, for the convenient instruction of youth, with such salaries to the masters, paid by the public, as may enable them to instruct at low prices; and, all usefull [sic] learning shall be duly encouraged and promoted in one or more universities.”

However it was not until 1789 that the University of North Carolina was chartered.

The minutes of the first meeting of the Board of Trustees from from Volume 1 of the Board of Trustees Records (40001)

The minutes of the first meeting of the Board of Trustees from from Volume 1 of the Board of Trustees Records (#40001). Click to view a larger version of this image.

On December 18th of that year, the Board of Trustees convened for the first time in Fayetteville, North Carolina. It was at that meeting that William Richardson Davie informed the trustees that Colonel Benjamin Smith had donated 20,000 acres of land in what would become Tennessee to the University. The trustees sold the land and used the resulting funds to support the fledgling institution in its early years. Later, the Trustees chose to honor Colonel Smith by naming a campus building after him– Smith Hall, which was completed in 1851. Smith Hall is now known as the Playmakers Theater.

While the landing of the Mayflower is a very important moment in United States history, the chartering of the nation’s first public university to open its doors is important, too.

Today we celebrate the University of North Carolina, which has been serving the state for 218 years. But our University would be nothing without the students, faculty, and staff who learn, teach, and work here. Thank you all, and happy December 18th!

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Nelson Mandela, 1918-2013

This picture was taken on 12 February 1990, the day after Mandela's official release from prison. Folder 18, Box 2, the Records of the Black Student Movement, #40400, University Archives, Wilson Library.

This picture was taken on 12 February 1990, the day after Mandela’s official release from prison. Folder 18, Box 2, the Records of the Black Student Movement, #40400, University Archives, Wilson Library.

Today, University Archives joins the world in remembering  Nelson Mandela. Mr. Mandela passed away yesterday, December 5th.

An anti-apartheid activist and the first black president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela famously spent 27 years in prison for the charge of inciting workers’ strikes and leaving the country without permission. Mandela served as the president of South Africa from 1994 to 1999 after his unconditional release from prison on 11 February 1990.

 

 

 

A shanty during the 1986 protest. From the Records of the Black Student Movement, #40400.

A shanty during the 1986 protest. From the Records of the Black Student Movement, #40400.

Nelson Mandela and the struggle to end apartheid in South Africa were an inspiration to Carolina students in the 1980s. From 1985 to 1987, the student-run Anti-Apartheid Support Group called for divestiture of all UNC-CH holdings in companies operating in South Africa. The protests peaked in March and April of 1986 when student members erected a shanty-town in Polk Place in front of South Building. When the Endowment Board of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill voted to divest all of its holdings in companies operating in South Africa in October 1987, the group disbanded.

Check out coverage of the protests in Black Ink, the newspaper of the Black Student Movement.

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SOHP Interns Present UNC LGBTQ Oral Histories

Are you interested in the history of student activism at UNC Chapel Hill? What about the history of sexual education, sexuality counseling services, or LGBTQ life on UNC’s campus?

The Fall 2013 interns of the Southern Oral History Program will present selections from their current oral history project on two early student-run LGBT-rights organizations at UNC: the Carolina Gay Association (now the Sexuality and Gender Alliance) and the Human Sexuality Information and Counseling Service.

The performance will take place at the Love House tomorrow (Dec 5) at 3pm with a discussion afterward. Refreshments provided.

The Love House is located at 410 East Franklin Street. Hope to see you there!

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Wilson is Open Late for Studying!

During exams study spaces in Wilson Library will remain open until 9 PM.

One sleeping, one studying. From the Design Services Department Records, box 6, Collection #40324).

One sleeping, one studying. From the Design Services Department Records, box 6, Collection #40324).

We’ll be open late Thursday and Friday, December 5th and 6th; and again Sunday, December 8th through Wednesday, December 11th. If you are looking for a peaceful and inspiring place to study this exam season, please stop by to see us!

 

 

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Wilson Library is now on tumblr!

Class of 1988 Time Capsule

The Class of 1988 time capsule, featured on the Wilson tumblr.

University Archives is excited to be contributing to Wilson Library’s new tumblr page, which features materials from all of UNC’s Special Collections.

Check out the tumblr here, and be sure to follow us!

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November 22, 1963

diphi_resolution

The resolution passed by the Di-Phi Joint Senate on November 22, 1963. Di-Phi Joint Senate Records (#40153), University Archives.

Today, people around the country and around the world are commemorating the 50th anniversary of the death of President John F. Kennedy, sharing remembrances of the president and of the day that shook the nation.

In Chapel Hill, the campus came to a standstill as news of the President’s death spread. The next day, Daily Tar Heel writers recalled the moment that the word entered the newsroom:

“There were no warning bells on the UPI wire in the newspaper office here, as is customary when big news breaks. The first knowledge was the editor’s cry, ‘What’s this on the wire about the President being killed?’ No one believed he was serious.”

As word spread, students gathered around radios and televisions, abandoning their preparations for the “Beat Dook” parade scheduled for that afternoon. The parade and other campus events were cancelled, including that weekend’s football game against Duke.

Many on campus thought back to the President’s visit to campus two years earlier, and UNC President William C. Friday, who had visited Kennedy at the White House several times, said that he was “stunned” by this “terrible tragedy for our nation.”

That evening, the Di and Phi Joint Senate passed a resolution expressing their grief and sympathy. They sent a telegram to Jacqueline Kennedy and the newly sworn-in President Lyndon Johnson, saying “the Di-Phi Senate wishes to express its profoundest shock and grief at the death of our beloved president. May God keep you.”

johnson_note

Note from President Lyndon Johnson received by the Di-Phi Joint Senate, Di-Phi Joint Senate Records (#40153), University Archives.

kennedy_note

Note from Jacqueline Kennedy received by the Di-Phi Joint Senate, Di-Phi Joint Senate Records (#40153), University Archives.

Read the Daily Tar Heel from November 23, 1963 on the Internet Archive.

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C-A-R-O-L-I-N-A: www.unc.edu circa 1997

The UNC Libraries started a web archiving project in January 2013 (read more about that here), but the Internet Archive has been saving websites for much, much longer. In fact, they have saved over 366 BILLION web pages since 1996, accessible through the Wayback Machine.

In the Wayback Machine you can see an archive of UNC.edu since 1997, not to mention tons of other websites. Take a moment to search for some of your favorite websites and see what they looked like 10 (or more!) years ago. Not surprisingly, the Web has changed quite a bit since then.

Here is a snapshot of UNC’s homepage from April , 27 1997 featuring a very creative and informative acrostic linking to University departments and offices.

Screen Shot 2013-11-20 at 2.31.45 PM

Does anyone else think we should bring back the acrostic? What would your acrostic be?

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Poetry from the Archives

Sitting in the backlog of the University Archives, the records of General Administration’s Office of Research and Sponsored Programs contain materials on the many partnerships that UNC researchers have formed to fund their projects. Among these records, however, are some surprising items. Jasper Memory, Vice President for Research from 1986 to 1998, not only facilitated these sponsorships but also wrote poems. The University Archives likes this one in particular, entitled “Ground Level:”

#40238 General Administration, Office of Research and Sponsored Programs

While we don’t expect to receive the lost notebooks of Leonardo in our next acquisition, we do encourage all departments to continue sending us their gems.

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