NC State University  | campus directory  |  libraries  |  mypack portal  |  campus map  |  search ncsu.edu

By: James Stewart

It was a little less than 80 years ago this month that on February 4, 1937, Ruth Current succeeded Dr. Jane S. McKimmon as State Home Demonstration Agent for the North Carolina Agricultural Extension Service (later renamed Cooperative Extension Service). Both women are still remembered for their tremendous contributions to agriculture and for being two great North Carolinians. Today in the Better Living digital collection there are now annual statistical reports and county extension reports from the 1920s and 1930s created under their supervision. Before exploring these new resources the following is a brief retelling of the story of these remarkable women and how that torch was passed.

Jane Simpson McKimmon (1867-1957)

Teacher, civic leader, state extension leader, writer and one of the first women to graduate from NC State are only a few of McKimmon’s accomplishments. In 1911, Jane Simpson McKimmon a graduate of Peace Institute was selected as home agent to serve women in NC. At the time she was one of only five home agents in the nation. After 24 years she had transformed a home demonstration group for 514 white females in 14 counties into a statewide program with 54,310 white and black females in 78 counties. As many as 29 counties entered home demonstration work in 1933 alone. She traveled constantly from county to county and pioneered the technique of home demonstration to teach farm families.

Her teaching methods would be adapted nationally and internationally. She was innovative in training and teaching farm women in home economics in North Carolina. Her tremendous work in the NC Agricultural Extension Service made her an early champion of rural adult education. The effects of Jane McKimmon’s progress in home demonstration work can be seen in annul statistical reports now available online in the Better Living Collection. Please view the 1923-1924, 1925-1926, 1929, 1931, 1932 annual county worker reports. Home demonstration reports by Jane McKimmon from 1911 to 1943 plus photographs are available online from the “Green and Growing” digital collection. NCSU Libraries Special Collections Research Center is also home to the Jane Simpson McKimmon Papers, 1927-1968.

In 1935 McKimmon announced her desire to resign from demonstration work. Agricultural Extension Director Dr. I. O. Schuab respected her request but wanted her to wait until an appropriate replacement could be found.

Dr. Jane S. McKimmon in 1939.

Ruth Augusta Current (1901-1967)

The February 12, 1937 edition of the State College newspaper “The Technician” announced the resignation of Dr. McKimmon in a lengthy column which concluded with news about the new state agent. The appropriate replacement Dr. Schaub hoped for was a young woman named Ruth Augusta Current. Miss Current, as she was frequently referred to in the press and within extension work documentation, was a graduate of Meredith College, Peabody College and Columbia University with an academic background in home economics, sociology and adult education. After serving at a Winston-Salem orphanage and at several high schools she began extension services as an agent for Iredell county in 1927.

In November 1930, Current succeeded Miss Martha Creighton as the district home demonstration agent for the southwest region of 25 counties. Shortly after she was also appointed State Girl’s 4-H Club Leader serving under L. R. Harrill. While working in both of these positions it was announced that Current would become the new state home demonstration agent on February 4, 1937. McKimmon was pleased with the choice of Ruth Current whom she had know for nearly a decade.

The number of counties with home demonstration programs continued to grow under Current’s leadership. See the “Home Demonstration” section of the 1937 annual report for some statistics from her first year on the job. To see more of Ruth Current’s work during her time as state agent view these home demonstration supervisory reports from 1940 to 1956 from the “Green and Growing” digital collection. Ruth Current actively continued in the role of state home demonstration agent until 1957, after which she served as assistant director for the NC Agricultural Extension Service for Home Economics for an additional four years. When she was inducted into the NC Agricultural Hall of Fame in 1976, she was honored for her role in expanding resources for rural women in the areas or literacy, crafts, citizenship, music appreciation, public health and the connection of rural education to state and national organizations.

Ruth Current with foreign visitors in front of portrait of Mrs. Jane S. McKimmon, September 14th, 1954.

“When We’re Green We Grow”

Both women would continue to be supportive of each other and the work of the extension. Although she resigned from home demonstration work in 1937, McKimmon served as assistant director of the NC Agricultural Extension Service until her official retirement in 1946. In addition to that role a great deal of her time was devoted to the completion of her book When We’re Green We Grow a history of home demonstration, published in 1945 by the University of North Carolina Press.

Left to right: Ruth Current, actress Jane Darwell, and Jane McKimmon on an episode of the Cavalcade of America radio program, 1949.

In 1949 Ruth Current accompanied McKimmon to New York City for a radio dramatization of her book. The episode, also titled “When We’re Green We Grow,” was broadcast on the Cavalcade of America program on Monday, May 2, 1949 over the NBC network. “Miss Jennie” McKimmon was played by noted radio actress Helen Claire. The real Jane McKimmon can be heard 25:15 minutes into the broadcast after being introduced by Academy Award winning actress Jane Darwell. It would have been nice to also be able to hear Ruth Current’s voice as well. Maybe it is her clapping for a few moments at the introduction of Jane McKimmon.

By: Virginia Ferris

In 1956, four African American undergraduate students enrolled at North Carolina State University (or NC State College, as it was named at the time), marking the first early steps in desegregating the campus. Irwin Holmes, Walter Holmes, Ed Carson, and Manuel Crockett began their time as students here that fall, and in 1960 Irwin Holmes became the first African American undergraduate student to receive a degree from NC State, with a B.S. in Electrical Engineering.

Irwin Holmes, first African American athlete and undergraduate student to receive a degree from NC State.

Irwin Holmes, first African American athlete and undergraduate student to receive a degree from NC State.

As a student, Irwin Holmes made history by joining the tennis team, making his team the first integrated athletic team in NC State history. Holmes’ teammates also elected him co-captain of the tennis team his senior year, making him the first African American athletics team captain at NC State.

Mr. Holmes sat down with us to record an oral history interview in the fall of 2014. The interview is now online in our digital collections, where researchers can watch the full video interview and read the interview transcript to learn more about Mr. Holmes’ life and his experiences as a student at NC State.

Irwin Holmes' oral history interview in the SCRC's digital collections.

Irwin Holmes' oral history interview in the SCRC's digital collections.

In the interview, Mr. Holmes describes growing up in a vibrant African American community in Durham, where he says, “I grew up seeing that black people can do whatever they want to.” He describes then coming to NC State where he was the only African American student in all of his courses, with professors who in some cases refused to teach him because of the color of his skin. He also describes his tennis coach, Coach Kenfield, as an ally and mentor to him during his time as a student, and tells the story of his teammates walking out of a Chapel Hill restaurant that refused to serve him.

Mr. Holmes generously shared these stories and many others with us, helping to fill some of the gaps and silences about the experience of African Americans in the official records of the university during the early years of desegregation. Thanks to Mr. Holmes’ contribution to our ongoing efforts to document university history, researchers can better understand what it was like to be in the shoes of the first African American students on a previously all-white campus.

Learn more about Irwin Holmes and the history of African American students at NC State by exploring our digitized collections, Historical State Timeline, and Mr. Holmes’ interview online.

By: Virginia Ferris

Students explore notebooks of Marvin Malecha, former dean of the College of Design.

Professor Sara Queen recently collaborated with Special Collections to bring to life the early history of NC State’s College of Design for students in her class D101, Design Thinking.

Eli Brown, Todd Kosmerick, and Virginia Ferris gave a presentation to Queen’s 160 students last week, focusing on founding dean Henry Kamphoefner and the rich legacy of modernism that he cultivated in his faculty and students during the early years of the College of Design (originally named the School of Design), 1948-1972. The talk featured excerpts of a video oral history interview with former dean of the College of Design, Marvin J. Malecha, conducted and archived by Special Collections, as well as excerpts of earlier interviews with faculty and alumni.

Design students model a geodesic cotton mill, circa 1952.

This week the students came to D.H. Hill Library to view materials from the collections that document those early years. Groups of students visited throughout the day to explore a selection of items from our collections, including the ever popular notebooks from the Marvin J. Malecha Papers, architectural drawings and papers from the collections of Henry Kamphoefner, Matthew Nowicki, George Matsumoto, Lewis Clarke, and T.C. Howard, posters and publications featuring the work of Alexander Isley and Meredith Davis, and early bulletins and student publications from the College of Design Publications Records. As part of their class assignment, students selected one item to document (in sketches, diagrams, or photographs) and to analyze in a reflection paper. We enjoyed watched the students’ reactions to the materials, which sparked a lot of great discussions, and look forward to seeing more of their reflections.

By: Laura Abraham

As the NC State community returns to campus after the Martin Luther King, Jr., Day holiday, let us take time to remember the legacy of the influential civil rights leader and beloved icon.

NCSU Libraries’ Special Collections and Research Center has archived issues of The Technician available online, which includes an article “Dr. King Urges Passive Resistance for Negroes,” from the February 13, 1958 edition of the newspaper. The article summarizes Martin Luther King, Jr.’s visit to Raleigh, where he spoke on the subject of “Non-Violence and Racial Justice,”  a key component of his philosophy. The digitized Technician collection also features a January 20, 1986 article on NC State’s first celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr., Day, as well as many discoverable items on NC State’s relationship to Dr. King’s life, teachings, and legacy.

The Libraries and African American Culture Center’s Red, White, & Black multimedia project is another resource to explore while honoring Dr. King, and also in anticipation of next month’s Black History Month. It is a mobile-based tour of African-American history at NC State, made with location-aware software to provide a walking tour through our campus, providing text, audio, and images. The Special Collections and Research Center hosts the copies of the recordings in our Rare and Unique Digital Collections, and they can be found and listened to here.

In addition, please visit these past SCRC posts on Dr. King:
1958 Martin Luther King Visit
Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s Assassination and NCSU’s Reaction

If you would like to learn more about the Special Collections Research Center and our digitized materials, please visit NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of images, video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics.

By: Rachel Jacobson

After a recent re-organization of the William L. Flournoy, Jr. Papers, 1968-2015, it is evident that Flournoy did a great deal more for Raleigh than improve bicycle recreation.

Bicycling has become an increasingly popular activity over the past decade.  In Raleigh, North Carolina cyclists will surely have enthusiastically noticed new additions to the greenway system, many of which have come about within the last ten years.  While the new expansions of the right-of-way passages are exciting, and could mean greater acceptance of using bicycles as a green alternative to cars, many people who utilize these trails may not be aware of how far back the planning for them goes.

Flyer for Bicycle Information, Raleigh, N.C., 1977 Can be Found in Box 1-5 Folder 5

In fact, the Raleigh greenway was an idea developed by a North Carolina State University graduate of the Landscape Architecture program in the 1970s.

William L. Flournoy, Jr. proposed “The Benefits, Potential, and a Methodology for Establishing the Capital City Greenway” in 1972 to the city council, as a Master’s student.  Once the plan was accepted Flournoy continued advocating for, and further expanding the Raleigh greenway operation.  Flournoy kept track of the development of the greenways and is still involved with them today.

Raleigh was one of the first cities, especially in the Southeast, to develop such an innovative system, as documented in a related collection, the Charles E. Little Papers, 1975-1990.  Little and Flournoy corresponded about the development of the greenway, and these interactions can be seen in both the Little papers as well as the William L. Flournoy, Jr. Papers.

However, in order to get a more in-depth look into the development of the Raleigh greenways, please view the newly organized William L. Flournoy, Jr. Papers, 1968-2015. While this collection includes many interesting details about Flournoy’s involvement and development of the greenway plan, it also documents many other projects Flournoy was a part of over his career.

Letter from Ronald Reagan, 1981 Can be Found in Box 1-6 Folder 15

Flournoy worked on a number of things ranging from bicycle transportation and beverage container legislation, to the early implementation of the National Environmental Policy and State Environmental Policy Acts.  The Flournoy papers, and his career, range from the very local, including the development of Raleigh Comprehensive Plans and documents about the Duraleigh connector, to the national, with documents covering conferences on climate change and meetings about the Keep America Beautiful innitiative.  Anyone interested in recreation, open space preservation, or environmental and recreation-oriented nonprofits would be enlightened by the William L. Flournoy, Jr. Papers, documenting the career of a devoted civil servant.

Jan 04 2016

Welcome back!

By: Laura Abraham

We here at NCSU Libraries’ Special Collections Research Center would like to welcome back NC State students after their holiday break, and hope that your new year and new semester goes smoothly. To wish you the best for your return to classes, here are some images of NC State classes in session from our digitized collection.

To see these images and other materials related to Student Life, please visit NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of images, video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics.

Again, SCRC wishes you a happy New Year!

By: James Stewart

The Cooperative Extension reports being digitized as part of the “Better Living in North Carolina” project include the statistical and evaluative work of many individuals.  For a moment we would like to shed light on the life of an extension agent who can be seen in the 1938 annual extension report (especially on p.32).

John W. Mitchell* (1886-1955) was a pioneering African-American extension agent and educator who became one of the most well known Cooperative Extension agents in the nation. A native of Morehead City, North Carolina, Mitchell graduated from the State Colored Normal School (now Fayetteville State University), earned a B.S. in agriculture from the Agricultural and Mechanical College for The Colored Race (now North Carolina A&T State University) in 1908 and studied sociology in graduate school at Indiana Central University in Indianapolis (now the University of Indianapolis).

After serving as an assistant and lead principal at two high schools, he became an extension agent in 1917. At first he served the North Carolina counties of Bladen, Columbus and Pasquotank, commuting from county to county by horse or bicycle. In 1922 Mitchell was appointed to the newly created extension service district office at the A&T campus in Greensboro where he would direct the extension activities for 15 counties.  During this time he is said to have built one of the largest Negro 4-H Clubs in the nation. In 1940, following the death of C. R. Hudson, who was responsible for extension and 4-H club work for the entire state, Mitchell became the “State Agent for Negro Work” or the state extension agent for African-Americans.

Mitchell’s house in Greensboro, North Carolina, shortly after he was appointed State Negro Agent, April 1940

In the A&T position John W. Mitchell was well known for his financial and innovative leadership in the lives of the state’s African-American farmers. He was also active in academic and community efforts between Whites and Blacks. He participated in the North Carolina Commission on Inter-Racial Cooperation to advocate for state and national anti-lynching laws, and he spoke at churches for Race Relation Sunday services.

In 1943 Mitchell moved to Virginia after he was appointed the field agent for the United States Extension Service to represent 17 southeastern states or the “Upper South’s Field Agent in Negro Extension Work.” His office was based at the Hampton Institute in Virginia. During the Second World War and postwar era, 4-H membership soared, and Mitchell served as Director of Regional 4-H Club camps for Negro boys and girls in addition to multiple roles as chair director or secretary for national and regional agricultural conferences.

By 1950 Mitchell was renowned as one of the top agricultural experts in the nation. That same year Livingston College awarded him an honorary degree of Doctor of Humanities for his work in improving the rural life of farmers in the South. Three years later, United States Department of Agriculture Secretary Ezra Taft Benson appointed him to the specially created post of National Extension Leader on the staff of the Division of the Department of Cooperative Extension Work, the highest rank ever given up to that time to a person of color within the national extension organization. Mitchell was still serving in this position when on he passed away in Baltimore, Maryland, on January 7, 1955, at the age of 69.

Mitchell at his desk, 1940

In his memory the J. W. Mitchell 4-H Camp was dedicated in June 1956 in Onslow County, North Carolina, and a building was named for him at Fayetteville State University in 1955. Mitchell’s legacy has continued for decades. He was inducted into the N. C. A&T School of Agriculture Hall of Fame in 1996.  At a 2014 centennial celebration he was remembered as one of five key pioneers of the A&T Cooperative Extension program.

*The extension agent John W. Mitchell should not be confused with Dr. John W. Mitchell (b. 1905), the principal physiologist of the USDA Bureau of Plant Industry, Soils, and Agricultural Engineering in Beltsville, Maryland.

Bibliography:

Research for this blog post yielded scores of newspaper and peer-reviewed journal articles, history books, and archival finding aids on the life and work of John W. Mitchell. His tasks, accomplishments and honors are too numerous to list here.

Clark, J. W. (1984). Clover all over: North Carolina 4-H in action. Raleigh: NCSU, 4-H & Youth. Also available online:

Clark, J. W. (2011). Clover all over: North Carolina’s first 4-H century, 1909-2009. Raleigh, N.C: Published by the North Carolina 4-H Development Fund, in cooperation with Ivy House Pub. Group.

Cooperative Extension commemorates 100th anniversary of landmark legislation. (2014, October 1). On The Move (newsletter), 2-2.

Hall of Fame Inductions Planned. (1996, March 26). Greensboro News and Record. Retrieved October 21, 2105.

Race Farmers Will Fare Well In 1950, Experts Say. (1950, January 14). Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved October 21, 2015.

Untitled article. (1950, June 24). The Carolina Times. p. 4. Retrieved December 10, 2015

Urges State Anti-lynch Law. (1937, May 5). Greensboro Record (Greensboro News and Record), p. 7. Retrieved October 21, 2015.

By: James Stewart

While reviewing materials for the “Better Living in North Carolina” project, we noticed that many of the annual Cooperative Extension Service reports beginning in 1935 featured a section called Publications.

This section was a review of all printed and audio-visual methods used by the extension to educate the farming population. One of the newest, yet far-reaching educational tools used by the United States Department of Agriculture at that time was radio. The NCSU Libraries Special Collections Research Center’s digital program has previously uploaded photographs of extension and sports related broadcasts made by North Carolina State University on local station WPTF. Now digitization in the “Better Living” project is revealing more information about how this radio station, and others in the Tarheel state, aided the transformation of the state’s agricultural economy.

Extension radio broadcasting may have began in North Carolina as early as 1922, but was most certainly on the way by 1927. In this blog post we hope to highlight some of the earlier radio programs which brought news, entertainment, and education to the farming population of North Carolina.

L. R. Harrill, center, and 4-H club members in front of WPTF radio microphone, during North Carolina State 4-H Club Week, 1952.

State College Broadcasting Program (c. 1927 – ?, WPTF)

Photographs and early newspaper radio logs detail weekly talk broadcasts listed only as the State College Broadcasting Program. On these programs professors and extension service agents stepped up to the microphone to give weekly 10-minute talks on many agricultural topics. John A. Arey, the dairy extension specialist, discussed why dairying was suited for traditional crop farming on May 22nd, 1929. On July 3rd of the same year the legendary Dr. B. W. Wells hosted “An Excursion to the Peat Bogs of North Carolina“. Other speakers included C. H. Brannon, extension entomologist; Dr. S. G. Lehman, plant pathologist; and W. L. Clevenger of the department of dairy manufacturing. Beginning in May of 1930, daily broadcasts were made, some of which were market reports on North Carolina farm commodities.

L. R. Harrill, state 4-H leader, sitting in front of an NBC Microphone

Carolina Farm Features (September 16th, 1935 – 1944, WPTF, later WRAL)

Extension broadcasting really began to peak in NC with Carolina Farm Features, a daily 15 minute program made by the North Carolina State College Agricultural (Cooperative) Extension Service. Eugene Knight was in charge of production, and Frank H. Jeter, agricultural editor and director of publications for NC State, was the director of these programs. Monday through Saturday broadcasts were conducted by extension specialists, experiment station workers, NC state faculty, farm and home agents, home demonstration club women, and 4-H club members.

The format of the program was similar to the earlier State College radio talks and included dramatic skits, news, interviews and discussions. On the week of June 28th to July 3rd, 1937, for example, the scheduled features were “Making Good Hay“, “Selling Fruits and Vegetables“, “Supply and Expert Situation of American Tobacco“, “State College Farm and Home Week“, “Timely Poultry Practices” and a 4-H Club program on Saturday. Within a few months of its 1935 debut, Carolina Farm Features could be heard across the state as mimeographed scripts were sent out to five different stations. This program was later succeeded by the Tar Heel Farm Hour in 1954, hosted by Jeter, and produced by NC State with the NC Association of Broadcasters.

National Farm and Home Hour (1928 – 1958, NBC, WPTF)

Frank H. Jeter, director of publications for NC State, seated with ladies for a broadcast of the National Farm and Home Hour. The woman in the middle is Ruth Current, State Home Demonstration Agent following the retirement of Jane S. McKimmon. This photo is dated from the 1940s.

The National Farm and Home Hour was a variety program co-sponsored by NBC Radio and the U. S. Department of Agriculture as a public service, running on a weekday afternoon time slot. The program was based in Chicago, but broadcast from different farms throughout the United States. A highlight of the 1937 extension report was the appearance of local farmers on an special broadcast of this series which is also detailed in the April 23rd issue of The Technician.

Unfortunately modern sources indicate that no surviving episodes of the National Farm and Home Hour broadcast from North Carolina or before 1944 are known to exist. To hear a sample of this program go the UCLA Collections page of the J. Walter Brown Media Archive of the University of Georgia at Athens.

State and National 4-H Broadcasts

Halifax County, 4-H Council Meeting in 1939 for National Negro 4-H Radio Broadcast and club

Farmers and agricultural students from North Carolina A&T State University, NC State College and regional youth throughout the state appeared in local 4-H radio broadcasts and the National 4-H Club Radio Program. Two youth who gained national attention were Walton Thompson, a young man who earned a full-ride scholarship to NC State and appeared on the National Farm and Home Hour and Town Meeting of the Air, and Lydia Mae Barbee whose Washington, D.C., broadcast added special honors to the North Carolina Negro 4-H programs. A press release about Barbee can be seen in this issue of the Indianapolis Recorder. 4-H activities, information, interviews and special events were broadcast occasionally throughout most of the 1930s until a twice-monthly program began in 1938 under the direction of “Mr. 4-H”, L. R. Harrill. Harrill’s weekly 4-H broadcasts were popular and would run until the early 1960s. A similar program known as the 4-H Club of the Air was broadcast from station WAIR in Winston-Salem.

As we work more with the “Better Living In North Carolina” project there will be future posts on early instructional technology from the extension. In the meantime please visit the Rare and Unique Digital Collections site for more on the history of the Cooperative Extension.

Today there are dozens of radio (and television) programs aired weekly throughout the state on agricultural topics which are listed by the North Carolina Cooperative Extension.

For more information about state radio programs designed to reach farmers and a history of how extension radio broadcasting began in NC read:

Clark, J. W. (1984). Clover all over: North Carolina 4-H in action. Raleigh: NCSU, 4-H & Youth. Also available online.

Clark, J. W. (2011). Clover all over: North Carolina’s first 4-H century, 1909-2009. Raleigh, N.C: Published by the North Carolina 4-H Development Fund, in cooperation with Ivy House Pub. Group.

Carpenter, W. L., & Colvard, D. W. (1987). Radio to reach the farmers. Knowledge is power: A history of the School of Agriculture and Life Sciences at North Carolina State University, 1877-1984. Raleigh, N.C: North Carolina State University. Also available online.

Troyer, J. R. (1993). Nature’s champion: B.W. Wells, Tar Heel ecologist.

Newspaper citations for quoted radio broadcast dates, titles and histories:

College extends broadcast service. (1936, January 9). Morrisville Tribune, The State Farmer Section, p. 2.

Farm broadcast will aid farmers. (1930, April 30). Danbury Reporter

Radio speaker. (1935, May 18). Indianapolis Recorder, p. 13.

Specialists offer mid-summer advice. (1937, July 1). Beaufort News, p. 3.

State college broadcasting program over wptf, raleigh, n.c., during june and july. (1929, June 14). Marshall News-Record.

By: Gwynn Thayer

The Special Collections Research Center is finishing up a very busy semester working with faculty and their classes; this week, Dr. James Mulholland brought his English 260 class to Special Collection to work with a selection of rare books. The students examined works such as one leaf from the Rosarium Theologie; Pliny the Elder’s Natural History; Thomas Moore’s Lallah Rookh; and Thomas Malory’s Morte D’Arthur with illustrations by Aubrey Beardsley, to give just a few examples.

The Special Collections Research Center collaborates with faculty in diverse academic areas at NC State and is committed to working with the entire NCSU community and beyond to provide access to its unique collections. For more information, please contact us at library_specialcollections@ncsu.edu

By: Gwynn Thayer

The Special Collections Research Center (SCRC) at NCSU Libraries is pleased to announce that the finding aid for the Virginia Handley Papers is now available and the collection is open for research.

Virginia Handley (1946-2014) was a prominent animal advocate and animal rights activist in California, and was credited as one of the best animal activists in the state. In 1970, she and her mother Grace helped co-found Animal Switchboard, an information hotline on animal-related problems located in San Francisco. Beginning in the 1970s, Handley lobbied for animal protection laws in California and is credited for many of the state’s present laws. She also coordinated the Fund for Animals based in San Francisco. When the Fund merged with the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) in 2005, she continued as California lobbyist for HSUS. In 1980, Handley founded PawPAC, California’s Political Action Committee for Animals for which she served on its board until her death.

The Virginia Handley Papers consist of a wide range of documents and publications, as well as a few audio-visual materials and artifacts, pertaining to animal advocacy, animal rights organizations and animal welfare issues. The collection includes materials relating to animal protection legislation, especially in California; numerous animal rights organizations; and activist issues relevant to specific animal groups. Many of the items pertain to issues in California, where Handley lobbied for animal rights in Sacramento beginning in the 1970s. The original order of the collection was maintained whenever possible, and as a result, the collection has been divided into the following series: Animals; Organizations; Issues; Proceedings and Publications; Audio-Visual Materials; Artifacts/Memorabilia; and Poetry/Literature on Animals.  The SCRC is greatly appreciative to Virginia Handley’s family member who donated the collection in addition to the volunteers in California who packed up her records and shipped them to North Carolina. Thank you!!!

The collection was inventoried by a number of Special Collections Research Center staff members, including a cadre of student workers: Radwa Samy, Drew Dowdy, Lauren Vanderveen, Bennett Chapman, Jessica Serrao, Jaimie Brieger, and others all helped staff members put together the preliminary inventory to the Virginia Handley Papers. The collection is now open and available to all researchers.