This collection consists of two scrapbooks containing newspaper clippings, letters, receipts, family photographs, and the written memories of A. Michael Barker (1886-1943) of Wilson, North Carolina. Additional items not contained in the scrapbooks include family photographs, a letter, and a ketubah. The scrapbooks were named for World War I and World War II according to the approximate time of the creation of their contents and the subject matter of the newspaper clippings. Topics represented in the scrapbooks include family life, relief efforts for Jewish victims of World War I in Europe, the Zionist movement, Nazi atrocities against Jews in Europe, and the speeches of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Barker’s approximately 49 pages of memories (circa 1942-1943) detail his financial troubles, family updates, and feelings on the treatment of Jews in Germany. Most of the correspondence is between Michael Barker or Anna Harris Barker and immediate and extended family members.
Barker created the scrapbooks from financial ledgers of his businesses in New Jersey and Wilson, North Carolina, and the financial entries are largely obscured by scrapbook inserts. While he created a majority of the content of the scrapbooks, some items were added after his death, presumably by another family member.