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Asa T. Spaulding was an insurance executive in Durham, N.C. and an activist in civil rights, education, employment, and other work related to minorities' rights. He held various positions in the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company for almost thirty-five years, beginning as its actuary in 1933 and serving as its fifth president from 1958 through 1967. Elna Bridgeforth Spaulding was an activist in civil rights for minorities and women and involved in local politics in Durham, N.C, serving as a Durham County Commissioner for five terms, from 1974 through 1984. The Asa and Elna Spaulding Papers, 1909-1997 and undated, bulk 1935-1983, document an African American family's lifelong involvement in the business, political, educational, religious, and social life of Durham, N.C. The collection consists of correspondence, writings and speeches, printed materials, clippings, photographs, audiovisual items, and memorabilia that reflect the Spauldings' work with the following organizations and groups: North Carolina Mutual Insurance Company; Mechanics and Farmers Bank; Durham County Board of Commissioners; the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People; National Urban League; Women-in-Action for the Prevention of Violence and Its Causes, Inc.; North Carolina Central and Shaw universities; White Rock Baptist Church (Durham, N.C.); and the Lincoln Community Health Center. The collection is divided into two subgroups. The Asa Spaulding Subgroup is arranged in nine series: Correspondence, Writings and Speeches, Organizations, North Carolina Mutual Files, Insurance Files, Subject Files, Photographic Materials, and Audiovisual Materials. The Elna Spaulding Subgroup is arranged in six series: Correspondence, Writings and Speeches, Organizations, Subject Files, Photographic Materials, and Audiovisual Materials.

The Asa and Elna Spaulding Papers, 1909-1997 and undated, bulk 1935-1983, document an African American family's lifelong involvement in the business, political, educational, religious, and social life of Durham, N.C. The Spauldings were active in a broad range of political bodies, businesses, civic groups, and activist organizations, including among many others theDurham County Board of Commissioners and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, and were among the co-founders of Women-in-Action for the Prevention of Violence and Its Causes, Inc. Their long record of accomplishment in the areas of employment, political representation, civil rights, race relations, and women's rights is documented by the collection's rich variety ofcorrespondence, writings and speeches, printed materials, clippings,photographs, audiovisual items, and memorabilia. The collection is divided into two subgroups. The Asa Spaulding Subgroup is arranged in nine series: Correspondence, Writings and Speeches, Organizations, North Carolina Mutual Files, Insurance Files, Subject Files, Photographic Materials, and Audiovisual Materials. The Elna Spaulding Subgroup is arranged in six series: Correspondence, Writings and Speeches, Organizations, Subject Files, Photographic Materials, and Audiovisual Materials. Some of these materials have been digitized and are available online.

The Asa Spaulding Subgroup, 1909-1984 and undated, documents Mr. Spaulding's career as an insurance executive and his lifelong activism in civil rights, education, employment, and other work related to minorities' rights. While serving in various capacities in Durham's North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company, Spaulding was also instrumental in the development of other local businesses such as the Mechanics and Farmers Bank as well as being active in a number of life insurance organizations at the national level, including the National Insurance Association and the Life Insurance Association of America. As his business career developed, culminating in his becoming the Mutual's fifth president in 1958, his national and international reputation also grew, especially in the areas of civil rights and race relations. This led to his serving on a number of government commissions and task forces and in various organizations concerned with urban affairs. Among the most important of these were the American delegation to a UNESCO conference in India and the National Urban League. Spaulding also maintained lifelong ties to the academic and religious communities. At various times he served on the boards of a number of universities, including North Carolina Central andShaw; in addition he had a long involvement with the Omega Psi Phi fraternity. He was active all his adult life not only in his local church, White Rock Baptist Church, but also in national groups such as the National Conference of Christians and Jews.

The Correspondence Series is characterized not by its depth of material for any one correspondent but rather its reflection of the breadth of Spaulding's contacts in business, government, politics, and education. Among the many contacts represented here are North Carolina governors, United States senators and congressmen, and all American presidents from the 1940s through the 1970s. The Writings and Speeches Series contains Spaulding's articles, opinion columns, press releases, speeches, and other works on a wide variety of topics, including civil rights, economics, education, insurance, principles of business management,race relations, and his travels abroad as a representative of the United States and UNESCO. There are also many of his introductions of speakers at public events and tributes to friends and political figures. A highlight of this series is the wealth of material about Spaulding's own life and career. Most of this was gathered by him for a planned though unpublishedautobiography; it consists of correspondence, drafts, interviews, printed material, and a variety of anecdotes and personal stories,

The Organizations Series is by far the largest series in the subgroup. It documents how far and wide Spaulding's interests and activities ranged beyond his career in the insurance industry, particularly his support of and agitation for civil rights and related issues and organizations. Series highlights include material about the following topics and organizations: his tenure on the board of trustees for theLegal Defense Committee of the NAACP; his work as a member of the North Carolina Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights; his work with the Women and Minority Directors Seminar (an attempt in the early 1970s to encourage organizations and businesses to hire more minorities at the management level); his activities as an American representative to a UNESCO delegation in the 1950s; and his 1971 mayoral election campaign in Durham. Also to be found here is a collection of materials about White Rock Baptist Church, of which Spaulding was a long time member and director. White Rock Baptist Church was prominent in civil rights activities in North Carolina and hosted many guest speakers.

Spaulding's career in the insurance industry is documented by two series, the North Carolina Mutual Files and the Insurance Files. Spaulding was the actuary for the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company (Durham, N.C.), in the 1930s, its actuary and vice-president in the 1940s, and its fifth president from 1956-1967. Thus the series documents not only Spaulding's career, but the development of the company over several decades into the largest African American-owned business in the world. A particular focus of this series is the dedication of the company's new building in downtown Durham in 1966, probably the major event of Spaulding's tenure as president. TheInsurance Files series reflects his activities in the industry beyond his positions at North Carolina Mutual. A particularly rich group of the papers documents his work with theNational Insurance Association (NIA), of which Spaulding was president in the 1940s. Formerly known as the National Negro Insurance Association, the NIA was an organization of officers of black-owned American insurance companies.

Several smaller series broaden the picture of Spaulding's life and career. The Subject Files contain general biographical data as well as more information about his travels and his campaigns for Durham County Commissioner and Mayor of Durham in the late 1960s and early 1970s. ThePhotographic Materials Seriesalso documents his travels as well as some of the history of North Carolina Mutual, especially the dedication of the new home office building in 1966. The subject matter of theAudiovisual Materials Series is largely biographical or autobiographical. In addition to recordings of some of Spaulding's speeches and public interviews, this series also contains several recordings he made that are apparently materials he was gathering for his planned autobiography.

The Elna Spaulding Subgroup, 1909-1997 and undated, documents Mrs. Spaulding's activism for civil rights for minorities and women and her career in local politics. Although the material spans almost sixty years, the bulk of it is from the late 1960s through the early 1980s. The Correspondence Series contains both personal and professional letters that give an indication of her involvement in local and state politics, advocacy for various groups including women, African Americans, children, and the elderly. Some of the organizations that appear in this series also appear in the Organizations Series.Although some correspondence may appear in the latter series, in general this material is not addressed to or from Mrs. Spaulding individually, but rather is documentation of each organization's work, including meeting agendas and minutes, financial reports, annual reports, and a wide range of planned activities. The papers of the Durham County Board of Commissioners provide the most detailed picture of Mrs. Spaulding's political activity. Her other work has focused on attempts to break down barriers between various groups and their rights. Involvement in these issues, including women's employment, women's rights, and public health, is highlighted by the material fromWomen-in-Action for the Prevention of Violence and its Causes, of which she was the founder--in 1968--and first president, as well as such organizations as the Lincoln Community Health Center. The Subject Filesround out the picture of her career, particularly in documenting her campaigns for public office in the 1970s and 1980s.

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The Neighborhoods Project was created as part of the Community Programs department within Duke's Center for Documentary Studies. According to the CDS website, it offered North Carolina elementary school teachers an innovative and effective way to meet social studies goals outlined in the state's standard course of study. The project provided a way to engage students in their own communities, focusing on their individual lives and stories through photographs, narrative writing, and storytelling. It provided a series of experiential learning activities that encouraged the use of photography, oral history, and narrative writing in an exploration of community and citizenship. Collection includes black-and-white photographs, negatives, and slides from projects created by students at Durham's E.K. Powe and W.G. Pearson elementary schools between 1997 and 2004. The images document the social life and the built environment in Durham, N.C., in city neighborhoods where the students live; they feature children, pets, houses and places of business, groups of adults, and other neighborhood scenes where whites, African Americans, and Spanish-seeking citizens live. Some materials are in Spanish. Also includes some student booklets and publications highlighting their projects as part of the program. Acquired as part of the Archive for Documentary Arts.

Collection includes black-and-white photographs (a few are hand-colored), negatives, and slides from projects created by students at Durham's E.K. Powe and W.G. Pearson elementary schools between 1997 and 2004. The images document the social life and the built environment in Durham, N.C., in city neighborhoods where the students live; they feature children, pets, houses and places of business, groups of adults, and other neighborhood scenes. Also includes some student booklets and publications highlighting their projects as part of the program. Materials are sorted by school, with miscellaneous or unidentified materials in the last series. Also contains electronic and audiovisual recordings that require reformatting before use.

Acquired by the Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University.

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Charles DeWitt Watts papers, 1917-2004 and undated 13.6 Linear Feet — Approximately 7249 Items

Pioneering African American surgeon who was chief of surgery at Lincoln Hospital, clinical professor of surgery at Duke University, founder of Licoln Community Health Center, director of student health at North Carolina Central University, and vice president and medical director for North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company, all in Durham, N.C. Spanning the period of 1917 to 2004, the Charles DeWitt Watts Papers contain files related to Watts's education, family, community activities, centered in Durham, N.C., and his career as a surgeon, administrator, and trustee on several boards. There is material on the formation in 1901 of Lincoln Hospital, a medical care facility for African Americans in Durham, N.C.. and other items on the early 20th century history of Durham, but the bulk of the papers relate to the later half of the 20th century. Formats primarily consist of correspondence, reports, notes, speeches, photographs, and print materials. It is organized into the following series: Community Relations, Personal Files, Photographic Materials, and Professional Files. Material in the Medical Records Series have been separated and are currently closed to use. Acquired as part of the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture.

Spanning the dates 1917 to 2004, the Charles DeWitt Watts Papers contain files related to Watts's education, family, community activities, centered in Durham, N.C., and his career as a surgeon, administrator, and trustee on several boards. The bulk of the material dates from 1970 to 2000. The collection primarily consists of correspondence, reports, notes, speeches, photographs, and print materials, and is organized into the following series: Community Relations, Personal Files, Photographic Materials, and Professional Files. Material containing personally-identifiable medical information in the Medical Records Series has been separated from the other professional files and is currently closed to use.

Largest in the collection is the Professional Files Series, which primarily contains administrative documents related to Watts's career as a doctor, surgeon, and medical administrator for various private practices, hospitals, boards, and professional societies. Of particular note are files related to Watt's mentor, Dr. Charles Drew, the history of Lincoln Hospital, and the establishment of the Lincoln Community Health Center in 1970. The folders in the Medical Records Series have been segregated and are currently closed to use. The Community Relations Series concerns Watts's professional life outside of medicine, containing files related to his membership in churches and fraternal organizations, non-medically-related boards on which he served, his work with Durham, N.C. organizations, his interest in race relations, and honors awarded him. Also included are the papers of Constance Watts (wife), Lyda Merrick (mother-in-law), and Margaret Smith (a nurse in his office). Of special interest is a scrapbook about the Negro Braille Magazine (now the Merrick-Washington Magazine for the Blind), founded by Mrs. Merrick.

Some professional correspondence is also intermixed in the Personal Files Series, which contains papers related to Watts's family, friends, finances, education, and alumni activities. Of particular note is a transcript of Watts's oral history. Containing both professional and personal content, the Photographic Materials Series contains photographs, slides, and negatives. The bulk consists of portraits and snapshots of the Watts family. Of particular note are early photographs of Lincoln Hospital nursing students and staff members.

Acquired as part of the John Hope Franklin Research Center for African and African American History and Culture.

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Youth Document Durham and Durham Works were programs sponsored by Duke University and the Center for Documentary Studies that brought together young people ages 12–16 from diverse Durham communities to document their lives, local history, and contemporary social issues through photography, oral history, and narrative writing. The Youth Document Durham and Durham Works project records span the years 1995-2008 and document the process of training young people in Durham, North Carolina schools to use photography and other arts, oral histories, and writing to record the history and members of their communities and the local issues affecting the students' lives. Many of the students are African American or Hispanic and their topics often highlight social conditions and race relations in African American and Hispanic communities in Durham neighborhoods and in a few other locations, including South Carolina. Topics explored by participants, both interviewers and interviewees, include crime, food cultures, jobs and education, music, racism, technology, teen violence, work cultures, and tobacco cultivation and its social context. The bulk of the collection is made up of hundreds of oral interviews conducted by junior high and high school students with community members, documented through audiocassette recordings, photographs, writings, and some transcripts, but there are also many program publications, project curricula, and administrative records for the program from its beginnings through 2008. There is also a database created by Center for Documentary Studies staff that records the complete information for each interview, including descriptive notes on certain interviews. This data also contains restricted information. For access to this database, please consult with a reference archivist. Acquired as part of the Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University.

The Youth Document Durham and Durham Works program records span the years 1995-2008 and document the process of training young people in Durham, North Carolina schools to use photography and other arts, oral histories, and writing to record the histories and members of their communities and the local issues affecting the students' lives. Although the vast majority of the projects focus on Durham, there is also one project based in South Carolina. Topics explored by participants, both interviewers and interviewees, include crime, food cultures, jobs and education, music, racism, technology, teen violence, work cultures, and tobacco cultivation and its social context. The collection is divided into four series: Interviews, Photographic Material, Project Files, and Additions.

The bulk of the collection is made up of hundreds of interviews conducted by junior high and high school students with community members, but there are also many program publications, project curricula, and administrative records for those years. The contents of each series is described in full below. There is also a Community Stories database that houses the complete information for each interview, including descriptive notes on certain interviews, and restricted information. For access to this database, please consult with a reference archivist.

The Interviews Series forms the bulk of the collection, and houses the materials generated by the student projects. Each session was organized around a topic which usually would be repeated in subsequent years, such as "Durham Works" or "Old Five Points." Folders usually house one set of interviews conducted by one or more students, and contents typically consist of one or more cassette tapes of the oral interviews, consent forms and other documentation about the interviewees, and writings by the students that came out of their experiences as interviewers. Some interviews have been transcribed. Original audiovisual materials are closed to use; viewing or listening copies need to be made before contents can be accessed. Folders are arranged in number order as assigned by Center for Documentary Studies Staff; they are not in chronological order. An alternate listing at the end of this collection inventory groups boxes by project title rather than folder number order.

In addition to oral histories and writings, the students also produced many images of their subjects and their communities. Photographic prints and negatives of their work are housed in the Photographic Materials Series. Students also produced poems and drawings, and these are chiefly found in the Project Files Series.

Supporting program materials - curriculum guides, notes on staff meetings, staff guidelines, assessments of outcomes - are found in the Project Files Series. Also housed here are additional photographic images, mostly of the project students and staff, CDs with final projects, and the many publications that came out of the Center for Documentary Studies program. These booklets contain mostly interview transcriptions but also include photographs, drawings, annotations, and poetry. Also included is a retrospective collection of Youth Document Durham participant photos and essays, edited by Hong-An Truong and published in 2005.

Later accessions to the collections are found in the Additions Series. These items consist of audiovisual materials, photographs, and some printed materials. In addition to the Youth Document Durham project, related projects included in the Additions series are the Youth Treatment Court, which seems to have been a division of Youth Document Durham, and the Connect Program, which included projects from Old Five Points as well as special group projects for youth.

Acquired as part of the Archive of Documentary Arts at Duke University.