James, Carly, and friends say no thanks to nukes

Musicians United for Safe Energy, or MUSE, was founded shortly after the Three Mile Island accident to oppose nuclear energy. MUSE organized a series of “No Nukes” concerts in New York in September 1979.

Rolling Stone devoted a cover to the headliners (including James Taylor depicted with his hand atop the head of wife Carly Simon) and later called the concerts “a high-water mark of inspiration and optimism… a stunning testimony to the depth of the shared beliefs of the generation which came of age in the sixties.”

More On Archibald “Moonlight” Graham

Every student at UNC knows Frank Porter Graham. Even if they’re unaware of his status as UNC president, or his tumultuous Senate race against Willis Smith in 1950, they’ve heard his name, which was bestowed on the student union. What I didn’t know until recently (and suspect most other students don’t), is that Frank Porter Graham had a sibling who was, in some circles, even more famous.

Archibald “Moonlight” Graham played baseball for three years at UNC, then in the minor leagues with the Charlotte Hornets. During the 1905 season, he joined the New York (now San Francisco) Giants. On June 29, he was put into right field in the eighth inning of a game against the Brooklyn Superbas. While he was on deck, the Giants’ final out was hit, and Graham never went to the plate. That game turned out to be the first, and last, of his major-league career. Graham went on to medical school at the University of Maryland, and spent his career as a physician in Chisholm, Minnesota, where he died in 1965.

Baseball fans will be familiar with Moonlight Graham’s story: it’s featured in W.P. Kinsella’s 1982 novel Shoeless Joe. The film adaptation of the novel, Field of Dreams, also includes Graham as a major character, keeping his real name and much of his biography. Not only did Field of Dreams become a baseball classic, it aired Archibald “Moonlight” Graham’s interesting, if brief, career to the country.

Weep No More, My Lady

Eleanor Roosevelt wrote a syndicated column called  “My Day,” and they are brief, diary-like entries that contain her observations and experiences.  This column twice featured her opinions of the South.  On February 4, 1950, she commented broadly on the “signs of poverty and unhappiness” that occur in the South.  And she specifically references a trip to UNC Chapel Hill and a visit to Danziger’s coffee shop in her column dated February 6, 1950.  (Clicking on the links will bring you to George Washington University’s digital collection of Eleanor Roosevelt’s “My Day” columns.)

Her words were not taken lightly:  We’ve got a pamphlet by W.E. Debnam titled, “Weep No More, My Lady:  Southerner Answers Mrs. Roosevelt’s Report on the ‘Poor and Unhappy South.”   These responses were originally broadcast on the radio on February 8th and 9th, 1950 before being printed.

Jason Tomberlin’s recent post on Eleanor Roosevelt’s visit to Danziger’s featured a photo from her February, 1950 visit.  I’m reposting the photo here.


Billy E. Barnes Photographic Collection (1959-1996)

Howard Lee speaks with voters during his campaign for Mayor of Chapel Hill in 1969
Howard Lee speaks with voters during his campaign for Mayor of Chapel Hill on April 29, 1969; ; p034-04-29-69, from the Billy E. Barnes Collection #P034, North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives.

It has been a while since I have posted on the NC Miscellany Blog, so let me begin by introducing myself again; my name is Patrick Cullom and I am a visual materials archivist who processes photographic materials in the North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives.  I am very pleased to be able to announce that after several months of work, I have finished processing the Billy Barnes Photographic Collection.  The Barnes materials include approximately 63,000 images taken across the state (with a concentration around the Durham/Orange County areas) that span almost 4 decades (1959-1996). These images offer a unique view into the economic and social changes experienced across the state during this period and the effects those changes had on the people of North Carolina.

Mr. Barnes began his career as a photographer in Atlanta, Georgia working for McGraw-Hill publishing company.  In 1964 Mr. Barnes was hired as the official photographer for the North Carolina Fund (a NC government funded poverty prevention/alleviation program begun by Governor Terry Sanford ca. 1963-1969) and as a result, a large portion of the collection documents the internal operations of the Fund and the people/communities directly effected by its work.  The materials also include images taken by Mr. Barnes as a free-lance photographer for numerous groups, organizations, and companies across the state (some formed during the years the NC Fund was active). His materials have been used in books published by more than 100 publishers and have appeared in over 100 magazine titles.  As of 2009, he lives in Chapel Hill, N.C., and continues to work as a free-lance photographer.

The full collection can now be searched/browsed using the newly created finding aid: http://library.unc.edu/wilson/ncc/pcoll/34barnes/34barnes.html
Researchers can also access digitized materials in the Billy Barnes digital collection at UNC via the finding aid.

Hat tip from editorial cartoonists everywhere

Death noted: David Henderson, 94, in Charlotte. In 1936 Henderson drew what was likely the first of innumerable published caricatures of Richard Nixon. It appeared on a banquet program recognizing classmate Nixon as president of the Duke University student bar association.

Caption: “Our New Prexy ‘Nose’ All.”

Square Dance Festival in Fontana

One of our staff members recently found A Calendar of and Guide to All the Fall and Winter Shindigs Going on in North Carolina (Fall/Winter 1975). Since I was born in 1975 (yes, I’m trying make some of you feel old!), I thought I would see what happened on this day in 1975.

September 14, 1975, was the first day of the Square Dance Festival in Fontana, North Carolina. Does anyone remember attending? Does this festival still occur?


The button above is from the Lew Powell Memorabilia Collection. It’s from 1976–rather than 1975–but it was too good not to include!

I also noticed that a short 13 days later the Poultry Jubilee began in Rose Hill.

Ney-sayers keep their theory alive

What was it about Peter Stewart Ney, believed by some to be a fugitive Napoleonic marshal passing as a Rowan County schoolmaster, that inspired such fascination? Has any other North Carolinian ever been the subject of so many biographies, however questionable? They just keep coming, from “Historic Doubts as to the Execution of Marshal Ney” (1895) to “Marshal Ney Before and After Execution” (1929) to “Marshal Ney: A Double Life” (1937) to “Napoleon’s Traitor: The Masons and Marshal Ney’s Mysterious Escape” (1989) to “Execution Denied: The Story of Marshal Ney, Napoleon’s ‘Bravest of the Brave’ ” (2004).

The Dictionary of North Carolina Biography avoids using the word “hoax” but concludes bluntly “He was not… the marshal.”

Carolina Alumni Review vol. 1-12 Now Available Online

The first twelve volumes (published 1912 – 1924) of the Carolina Alumni Review are being digitized by UNC’s Scribe scanner and will be freely available online through the Internet Archive.  You can view them here.

Established in December 2007, the Scribe Digitization Program is a partnership between the UNC University Library and the Open Content Alliance, which hosts the Internet Archive.  The Scribe (a high-speed scanner) and associated software applications developed by the Internet Archive facilitate high-volume conversion of bound materials to digital format.  All books digitized by the UNC library are hosted by the Internet Archive and are freely available online.

The Scribe is being used to digitize titles from UNC’s North Carolina Collection and Rare Book Collection that have no copyright restrictions.  Items from the NCC that have been digitized include NC county histories, NC religion-related items, NC city directories, and NC biographies. When an item has been digitized, a link will appear in that item’s record in the Library’s catalog (see an example here).  As of today, more that 4,400 titles have been digitized.  You can access all of the titles UNC has made available through the Internet Archive here.

Digitized titles are full-text searchable, and can be viewed in a variety of different formats.  Be sure to check out the “Flip Book” function!