The owner/editor of this blog is Stephen Fletcher, Photographic Archivist in the North Carolina Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The rights to all images in the Hugh Morton collection belong to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library.  To request reproductions, please visit the Wilson Library webpage “How to Order Copies.”

North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives
CB#3930, Wilson Library
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC 27514-8890

40 thoughts on “Contact”

  1. Just wanted to touch base. For the past six years, I have been working on a very detailed history of UNC basketball that will be published in 2012. I have just completed going through the Hugh Morton collection online and have found several mistakes concerning identification. Let me know if you would like my input. Thanks. Ron Smith

  2. Hello Ron:
    I have been working with the Morton team for about 19 month as a volunteer. I would very much like your input on identifications. Here is my email address: kjhilliard40
    I remember your adding a comment back on July 5, 2008 about the 1957 UNC-Duke basketball image (
    Thanks very much for your offer. I look forward to your book in 2012.
    Jack Hilliard

  3. Hello,
    Can anyone let me know if photos from Tasmania, Australia are available to view?
    Hugh and Julia visited my husbands family @ 1978-9 and we’d love to see some of the very many he took while there.
    Maggie Shoobridge

  4. Dear Maggie,
    There are no Australian photographs online, and the collection guide (which you can view at only lists some slides made during a trip to Australia and New Zealand in February 1984—including some of “Shoobridge Farm.” There is a fair amount of unidentified photographs in the Morton collection. Perhaps photographs from the 1978-79 trip are unidentified? There are also some photographs under “Shoobridge, Chris, 1988-circa early 2000s” in series 2.6, including a wedding on 18 November 1988.
    Hope that helps!

  5. Thanks for your question, Renee, which pointed out that I accidentally left off subscription link icons during our redesign several months back. We’ve just put two subscription buttons in the right side column, one each for posts and comments.
    Our IT person said the ability to subscribe to the blog is actually built into WordPress, so in a way it was always there. He said, “WordPress automatically generates feeds for almost every part of a blog. The presence of a feed is detected by all modern browsers who then differ in how they expose that feed to the user (usually some sort of icon or message in the URL bar).” So the functionality was there all the time. The icons just make it more obvious to readers.

  6. about 200000 slides,
    i’ve >20.000..
    tips/help for me ?
    i’m considering doing something like this (search youtube)
    My home made diascanner @ work
    ( i can buy that DIAPOSITIVE Rotomatic 510, but i need to do all the rest!)
    but i don’t have a Reflex , just a Tz7

  7. Regarding the October 24, 2008 post Drowning in a Sea of Slides by Amber Couch – did anyone ever explain the meaning of those numbers stamped on 35mm slide mounts. I know the frame number and date, but what are those H2, H5, H12… etc numbers? Apparently one can’t find everything on the internet!

    1. I spoke to a photographer today who was actively photographing in those days and he did not specifically know what they represented. His conjecture was the machine that processed the rolls of film.

  8. Dear Stephen –
    I thought you might find this set of coincidences most interesting. I’m a Charleston based writer and former editor at Surfer magazine. I wrote a recently released book titled: Ghost Wave – The Discovery of Cortes Bank and the Biggest Wave on Earth. The book is about a 15-mile long sunken island 100 miles off the coast of California that produces the largest rideable waves on earth. I go into a fairly deep history of the place – including its discovery and strange maritime history. It turns out that the spot on the Bank that produces the titanic wave – the six-foot-deep Bishop Rock – was discovered in 1855 by Lt. Archibald MacRae, USN, of Wilmington. Archibald was an intrepid and uncelebrated explorer and a daring military man. He was a brother of Hugh MacRae Morton’s great grandfather, Donald and a son of Gen Alexander MacRae. The story took all sorts of strange turns when I discovered that Archibald had committed suicide barely two weeks after news of his dangerous ocean discovery hit the pages of the New York Times. Eventually I found nearly all Archibald’s letters home to his dad, and brothers throughout an almost unbelievable military career that took him to the Mediterranean, Hawaii and even put him to work as a spy during the Mexican-American War- thanks to an intrepid librarian in Wilmington. The letters not only seem to spell out how and why he killed himself, but also go into terrific behind the scenes detail of the intrigue behind the only book he ever contributed to: The U.S. Naval Astronomical Expedition to the southern hemisphere, during the years 1849-’50-’51-’52 – in which he appears to also be the first American to cross the Andes.
    111 years after MacRae’s death, a B-Movie actor and wild assed entrepreneur named Joe Kirkwood Jr. decided that he would decide to try to turn the Cortes Bank into his own island nation kingdom – to be called Abalonia – by literally refloating the Bishop/MacRae’s Rock with boulders and a giant WWII freighter. The mission was a spectacular failure. So where does Hugh MacRae Morton come into this? Well, see the below link. In 1952, Joe Kirkwood was in Wilmington with his wife Cathy Downs, for the Azalea Festival and MacRae Morton took his photo:
    I’m sure Morton would have been fairly astonished to have learned of his connection to the great failed nation. I’ve been in touch with Hugh MacRae Sr. and Jr in Wilmginton (Jr is an avid surfer). They were fairly amazed too.
    Cheers – and thanks to your library for making it possible to publish this photo – and story – in my book. — Chris Dixon

  9. I’m wondering if you could have come across a photo of the Hermit of Fort Fisher, whose name was Robert Harrill. Hugh inherited Fort Fisher from his grandfather and owned it until the federal government took it by right of eminent domain in about 1958. Mr. Harrill is said to have lived in an abandoned bunker at Fort Fisher from 1955-1972. Hugh had met him and talked about him, but I don’t kinow for a fact that he ever photographed him. Mr. Harrill seems to have been the kind of colorful character that Hugh couldn’t resist.

  10. I checked the collection guide for “Harrill” and “hermit,” and looked at the materials for Fort Fisher and it seems he did not. I found a website for a film documentary on Harrill, but I’ve not seen his face among unidentified people in the collection. I’ll keep an eye out now that I know about it.

  11. Hi. I’m desperately looking for information about a song I grew up with. The internet tells me that Grady Cole wrote this song named “Heaven”, but I cannot find the song anywhere by anyone. Do you know if the Grady Cole of North Carolina is the one who wrote this old song? I posted on his page on this blog and put some of the lyrics in it if you were wondering what they were. Thanks for any information!

  12. Would you be interested in acquiring, or no another archive that might be, an HR-500+ scanner (with 135 and 120 strip gates)? I have one that i have been using for wedding work that I am looking to find a greater, more spacious home for.

  13. My brother attended in the early 60’s – I went to the “sister” camp near Blowing Rock. I believe the woman on the right (photo w/three women) is Miss Ellie Wood Keith (name may be misspelled) from Charlottesville, Va., who ran the camp riding program. Hope this helps!

  14. Good morning – I’m trying to hunt down a painting/picture of the Hatteras Lighthouse showing it upside down or possibly broken in pieces (likely in protest to the moving of the lighthouse). I have checked with most galleries – and it was in a restaurant (Quarterdeck?) in early or mid 90’s. Any thoughts or recollection please let me know!

  15. I am a historian and digital photo collector for the Lost Colony outdoor drama. I would LOVE to help identify people, places, etc. I will look through and see what I can do. Please let me know if you need any help with old Lost Colony photos. I have thousands on several computers and external hard drives, mostly scanned from the holdings of the Outer Banks History Center for various anniversary photo exhibits.

    1. Terrific! If you are new to the Hugh Morton Collection, please know that the online image collection represent only about 7,500 items from a collection of 250,000. You can search the entire collection through the finding aid, which can be reached from the “inventory” link on the online collection’s homepage.

  16. Hi Roxane,
    From the little bit of checking I did this this morning on wikipedia, it seems the building was used for both purposes during its history. Originally designed to be the National Library of the Philippines in the 1910s, the legislature decided to move into the building in 1926, after which it was called the Legislative Building. In 1935 the name changed to the National Assembly Building, and somewhere around that time the National Library moved into the building. In late 1944 the Japaneses occupied the building, which is apparently why it was almost completely destroyed during the Battle of Manilla. As a result, I believe this may be why different people labeled their photographs of the ruins with either title.

  17. My brother went to went there beginning in 1960 for two years. In your pictures you have one with three ladies, identifying the woman on the left but not knowing who the other women were. The woman on the right is Ellie Wood Keith, director of riding for years. She had a stable in Charlottesville, VA during the school year and moved to Linville in the summer. She was quite a character, riding into her 80’s.

  18. My friend Rusty Sherrill, former chief judge of the Wake County District Court, sent me the link to your site. First, I want to communicate I attended a private performance of NC Is My Home at the City Club in Raleigh. I can’t recall the exact date. Charles and Loonis, a trio of background singers and a pianist presented the entire show. The event was likely a fund-raiser. I attended as editor and publisher of Spectator weekly and Triangle Business (now Journal).
    Which segues to letting you know Hugh Morton’s grandson Jack Morton was the photographer for my Raleigh Metro Magazine that published from 1999 to 2013. Jack penned a feature on his grandfather for Metro in 2003. Here is the link: . I would think this personal memoir – describing how his grandfather taught Jack photography – should be included in the NC Collection. I will send a copy of this message to Bob Anthony – and Jack.
    Is the photo of Hugh Morton on your main page Hugh Morton as a very young man, or Hugh Morton’s son, Jack’s father who died tragically aat an early age?
    Best wishes,
    Bernie Reeves

    1. Thank you Mr. Reeves, and welcome to A View to Hugh! Last September, Jack Morton gave a talk about his grandfather’s photography at the opening of Hugh Morton retrospective at Barton College. Here’s a link to the announcement, that includes a photograph of Jack and Hugh Morton: I included a link to the Metro article as part of the post. The negative wasn’t identified, but we’re fairly certain the fellow in the photograph made on Grandfather Mountain is Hugh Morton (

  19. My name is Chris Foster and I am from Louisville, Ky. I was a camper @ Yonahnoka in 1964,65,66, & 67. In part III you have a photo of Juanita Forbes who worked in the Dining Hall and to the far right is Elliewood Keith who was the head of riding. I believe Ms. Keith was from Charlottesville, VA. I’m not sure who the other lady is but could have been the camp nurse at that time. When I there I think the nurse was a woman named Ruby Falls.

  20. Hello
    In the past, there was a section of this website, in tribute to a Hang Glider, who passed away. Many Hang Glider pilots, who knew him and flew off the cliffs of Waimanalo Hawaii, used this website to reminisce and touch base. Is this site available here? I went to the “Hang Gliding” section, but it was about Grandfather Mountain, not Hawaii & Waimanalo. If it still available here, please let know how to visit it.
    Nelson Philips in CANADA – See more at:

  21. I’ve just discovered a View to Hugh while doing research on Gen. Westmoreland. The history and emphasis re: Grandfather Mountain caught me by surprise because of my father’s love for that mountain. Given the time period involved, I suspect that Hugh and my father might have known each other. My father’s name was (William) Thayer Francis who became an artisan of marquetry in the area. As a matter of fact, one of his favorite creative efforts was of Grandfather Mountain. His museum was called “Thayer’s House of Marquetry”, and was located just off the Blue Ridge Parkway on Marion Road. His passion for the art of marquetry didn’t begin until his retirement at age 65, and by the end of his life at age 88 he still continued to carry a 2-year backlog of orders for his work. He too was honored by the University of North Carolina at Wilmington with their 2nd “N.C. Living Treasure Award” in the 1980’s (see living treasure awards on their website). I am curious if there might be any record or photo of a friendship between Hugh and my father because of their mutual dedication to the area, as well their love for Grandfather Mountain?

  22. I have recently been going through some letters that I found after my parents passed away. In them are letters dating 1939-1944 and are from my father to his mother while he was at Camp Yonahnoka in Linville, NC. Among them are the typed reports send home every 2 weeks on my fathers progress at camp. They are all signed by BV(?) Tompkins. Should you have interest in them please let me know. Seems quite a few interesting things went on there.

  23. Thank you so much for all the great work you do in keeping Mr, Morton’s visual legacy alive. We recently visited the museum at the top of Grandfather Mountain where their is a small exhibition of his beautiful work and I was smitten! Was happy to find so much more online on this incredible resource. Can only try and believe how much work scanning 250,000 negatives must be!

  24. Hello. Thank you for the great article. I am Katherine Chesley Colbert. CD’S granddaughter. I am a staunch supporter of history – love keeping it alive. Love what you have done with this story. I know my grandfather hosted Roger Bannister and the galloping ghost at his home back in the day.

  25. Getting old and looking at things from my distant past, I stumbled across the Camp Yonahnoka website. It was quite an amusing and pleasant surprise. I am the kid in the photo looking at my butterfly collection in the box I kept until a few years ago. It appeared to have a good seal between the top and bottom of the wooden box, but somehow bugs had gotten into it. Brought back very pleasant memories. I don’t remember who else from Montgomery was with me, but I know our group included Pete Mohr, who now lives in Virginia Beach and Bill Marks (still in Montgomery). Not sure, but think it also included James Stovall, who now lives in Maryland. One of my few memories was winning the contest in which you slid out on a smooth log over the swimming pool and met your opponent in the middle. You locked your legs around the log and wrestled until the first one to touch the water lost. I discovered I could lock my legs, fall upside down and pull the opponents legs apart and get him to fall into the water. Those were the days.
    Not as sure as the butterfly picture, but I think I am also the kid in the photo darkroom picture. Ended up spending most of my life in Boston. Great memories.

  26. We found a rail car door with D & H Macrae painted on the door. Barely ledgeable. Found it in McRaes’ Drying barn in 2004 located at the time at How Hartley Road And Ruffin street before it was sadly tore down. We have been storing it and recently unearthed it from our storage. Looking for more train photo graphs to try and match it. Anyone have any ideas? I know that Macrae had there own spur and mill across Ruffin st. Any train buffs out there? I have photos of door. 6’x6’ with two 30” square window cut outs. Very heavy

  27. I read the blog post on Camp Yonahnoka. I attended Camp Yonahnoka for a six-week term in the Summer of 1964 when I was 12 years old. In the second photo in your blog there is a photo of three ladies. The lady on the right in the photo was the Camp Yonahnoka riding instructor. I cannot remember her name, but I believe she was from Virginia. She was a very good instructor. I have many fond memories of Camp Yonahnoka, and would enjoy future blog posts about the camp.

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