Charles N. Hunter papers, 1850s-1932 and undated 7.3 Linear Feet
The Charles N. Hunter Papers date from the 1850s to 1932 and consist of Hunter's personal and professional correspondence, scrapbooks of clippings, articles, reports, and memorabilia. Correspondence relates to personal and financial matters, as well as to Hunter's various activities to improve African American education and economic well-being, particularly in the South. Specific topics touched on throughout his papers include race relations, voting rights, creating an educational system for African Americans, the temperance movement, reconstruction, African American business and agriculture, the North Carolina Industrial Association, and the North Carolina Negro State Fair. The three correspondence subseries form almost half of the Personal and Professional Papers Series . The correspondence subseries are: Business/Community Incoming Correspondence, Personal Incoming Correspondence, and Outgoing Correspondence. Among the correspondents are several African American Congressional representatives such as George H. White and Henry P. Cheatham; major political figures like Franklin D. Roosevelt and John Alexander Logan; important African American scholars including W.E.B. DuBois and Booker T. Washington; and many North Carolina governors, in particular Zebulon B. Vance, Charles B. Aycock, Locke Craig, and Thomas Walter Bickett. Although these letters address professional and political issues, Hunter established friendships with many of the noteable correspondents. The incoming correspondence has been arranged into letters pertaining to Hunter's business or community activities and letters relating to Hunter's personal life. There are also numerous drafts and copies of outgoing correspondence that Hunter wrote.
In the Other Professional Papers Subseries, there is a variety of miscellaneous printed materials and papers that cover Hunter's career as a teacher and principal, involvement in the N.C. Industrial Association, and role in the N.C. Negro State Fair. Included in this subseries is an array of print materials that provide a view of African American life in the South. This includes commencement invitations from historically black colleges and universities, a fourth edition of Lunsford Lane's slave narrative, and newspaper clippings. The bulk of this subseries deals with the larger Raleigh area, though some items address national issues.
The Writings and Speeches Subseries includes addresses given by Hunter and others. Most noteable is a transcription of Frederick Douglass' speech given at the 2nd Annual N.C. Negro State Fair. Amongst Hunter's writings are several pieces intended for a local encyclopedia which detail historic locales and important North Carolina men. Writings cover topics such as African American voting rights and post-Reconstruction analysis. Overall, Hunter's writings provide historical sketches of important figures, events, and reprecussions with an emphasis on local history.
The Scrapbooks Series is made up of seventeen scrapbooks assembled by Hunter which contain clippings and other items concerning race relations and other social, political, and economic affairs pertaining to African Americans. They are composed principally of newspaper clippings published in North Carolina, but their scope is national as well as local. The clippings have been copied and arranged chronologically; the originals are closed to use.