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By: Virginia Ferris

contributed by Jennifer Baker

In honor of our continued WWI coverage, it’s time to shed light on a tiny mystery of NC State history.

1919 Agromeck

From 1918 to 1919, the Spanish influenza made its presence known on the campus of the North Carolina State College of Agriculture and Engineering. A temporary hospital was set up on campus to accommodate the large number of students falling ill. Sixty-six women are listed in the 1919 Agromeck as being “on duty at State College during the influenza epidemic.” At the top of the page is a Memoriam to two nurses who “died while nursing State College boys during influenza epidemic.” These nurses are listed as Miss Eliza Riddick and Miss Lucy Page.

For many years, Eliza Riddick has frequently been identified as the daughter of Wallace C. Riddick. Wallace C. Riddick was the 4th President of the College and led the school through  the first world war and the influenza epidemic.

Eliza Riddick shares Wallace C. Riddick’s last name, but she was not his daughter.

Letter from Anna Riddick, 1967

The university archives has several folders of material on Wallace C. Riddick, including newspaper articles, copies of speeches, and obituaries. None of these sources mentions the loss of a daughter. There are several sources which list his children by name: Wallace Whitfield, Lillian Ivy, Narcissa Daniel, Anna Ivy Jones and Eugenia Trovers (note there is no “Eliza” listed). And perhaps the most definitive piece of evidence, a letter written to the University Archivist in 1967 by Anna Ivy Jones Riddick (one of Riddick’s daughters) lists the children of Wallace Carl and Lillian Riddick and states quite plainly “children – all living.”

Now that we have established that Eliza Riddick was not, in fact, Riddick’s daughter – the question remains, who was she?  An article in the November 1, 1918 Alumni News describes her as “only 24, gladsome, buoyant, joyful, radiant.” She was a “young soldier who enlisted against the scourge…She labored for her Government by day and by night, followed disease to its den, that those who fought it off might be reinforced by the presence of a woman.” Certainly, she made an impression on the writer – there doesn’t appear to be a similar article for Miss Lucy Page, the other young woman who died while nursing sick students.

This, of  course, STILL doesn’t answer the question of who Eliza Riddick was. In the 1919 Agromeck Memoriam, there are 5 women listed with the last name of Riddick: Mrs. I.G. Riddick, Miss Eliza Riddick, Mrs. W.C. Riddick, Miss Lillian Riddick and Miss Anna Riddick. Knowing that Lillian and Anna were both daughters of Mrs. W.C. Riddick, and assuming that the names were listed in some sort of mother/daughter relationship (since its clearly not alphabetical), it stands to reason that Eliza was the daughter of Mrs. I.G. Riddick. Wallace C. Riddick was born and presumably raised in Wake County by an uncle or grandfather following the death of his parents. His mother was from Wake Forest and his parents chose to settle there after marrying. These familial bonds to the area indicate that Mrs. I.G. Riddick was a likely a family member, perhaps a sister-in-law. If Eliza was her daughter,  this would make Eliza Riddick a niece of  Wallace C. Riddick and a cousin to his children.

This last bit is speculation of course, but a mystery we invite someone to solve! So while we still aren’t sure who Eliza Riddick was, there is ample proof that she was not the daughter of Wallace C. Riddick!

For more information on Wallace C. Riddick or NC State’s involvement in World War I, please contact us at

By: Cathy Dorin-Black

Robert Opie Lindsay

In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of U.S. participation in World War I, Special Collections News continues to examine the war’s impact on its students and alumni.  In this post, we remember Robert Opie Lindsay, NC State alumnus and hero in both world wars.  Be sure to also visit our previous posts on NC State during WWI regarding preparation and enrollment, as well as the post by our colleagues at the NC State News blog.

The 1919 Agromeck, called the “Victory Agromeck,” (as described in Alumni News, Vol. 2, No. 3, January 1, 1919) contains a lengthy dedication to the State College students and alumni who died or received commendations for their heroism in the first world war.  We encounter Robert Opie Lindsay in the “Cited for Bravery” section of the Victory Agromeck.  This passage describes how Lindsay engaged three Fokker type German aircraft and shot one down.  When eight more planes arrived as reinforcements, he out-maneuvered them, shooting down one more before retreating to home base. Indeed, Lindsay was a true World War I Flying Ace, the only one in North Carolina.  (A “flying ace” is typically defined as an aviator who has shot down five or more aircraft).  Here is the full entry, from the 1919 Agromeck:

In his State College days however, he was an athlete from the small town of Madison, on the Dan River in northern North Carolina.  He excelled in football, basketball and baseball.  He was active in the Leazar Literary Society, Debate Club, and the German Club, and he was business manager of the Red & White student publication and associate editor of the Agromeck.  The 1916 Agromeck (his senior year) describes “Opie” as possessing “business ability and good judgment,” while perhaps knowing nothing about girls.  His course of study was Textiles.

Robert Opie Lindsay

After completing his studies at NC State (then State College), Lindsay applied to the Officers’ Training Corps at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia, but he was turned away due to an acute episode of appendicitis.  After a successful operation in Greensboro, he enrolled in the Officers Training Corps for Aviators, stationed at Champaign, Illinois.  After deployment, he trained at a French aviation field and became well-versed in the acrobatic flying style that characterized his successes against the Germans and won him the Distinguished Service Cross for extraordinary heroism in action (Alumni News Vol. 2, No. 5, p. 5).

Lindsay went on to become an Air Force Colonel in World War II, and he helped to found the Civil Aeronautics Administration, a forerunner of the FAA.  He died in 1952 in Fort Worth, Texas, at the age of 54.

A historical marker in honor of Robert Opie Lindsay was approved by the North Carolina Highway Historical Marker Program in February of this year and will be erected in July on US 311 at Lindsay Bridge Road in his hometown of Madison, NC.  It will be a fitting tribute for a valiant alumnus.

You can discover images of students and campus during the war on our Rare and Unique Digital Collections site, as well as video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting the history of NC State and other topics.

By: Brian Dietz

This post was contributed by James R. Stewart Jr., Archives and Special Collections Librarian, North Carolina A&T State University.

Better Living In North Carolina is a collaborative digitization project between the NCSU Libraries and the Bluford Library at North Carolina A&T State University that is designed to reveal how agricultural practices transformed the state of North Carolina over the course of the last century. Materials from NCA&T that are now online and are being digitized present a wealth of information on the history of the NC Cooperative Extension Service and vocational education for African Americans. The majority of materials currently online from A&T are from the John D. Wray Collection and the S. B. Simmons Collection. This blog entry is about the three additional collections our materials originate from and their value to researchers.

Unidentified NFA Student Members
A Photograph of Unidentified NFA Student Members Holding a NFA Banner

The New Farmers of America Collection contains programs, banners, papers, photographs, scrapbooks, and so much more about the early national vocational education group for young African-American men in the nation and the state of North Carolina. These items provide more insights into the lives of S. B. Simmons, John C. McLaughlin and many other people who served in the NFA, NCA&T’s School of Agriculture, the extension service and many other regional or national educational groups.

Materials from the North Carolina A&T State University Cooperative Extension Service Archives Collection features a wealth of information not only about the role of the A&T extension service, but also about vocational agricultural education throughout the nation.

Images from the Pearsall Photographs Collection are also being digitized. Many vintage photos in this collection from 4-H camps, farm shows, cattle shows, and home demonstration meetings will complement the more than 200 photographs from the S. B. Simmons collection that are currently online.

RFD Piedmont was an agricultural program broadcast from WFMY-TV in Greensboro
RFD Piedmont was an agricultural program broadcast from WFMY-TV in Greensboro, NC during the 1950s & 1960s. This film is a fascinating time capsule of 4-H and the lives of extension agents R. E. Jones, Minnie Miller Brown, and Bessie B. Ramseur.

A unique contribution of these collections is that a majority of the non-text materials currently in the “Better Living” project originate from A&T. The collections of S. B. Simmons, the NFA and our extension office include a vast amount of audio-visuals of agricultural history. In collaboration with A/V Geeks and Post Pro, both of Raleigh N.C., 12 radio and musical recordings of the NFA and one broadcast of the Greensboro agriculture television program RFD Piedmont were digitized for future generations. It is incredible to see and hear many legends of North Carolina extension and vocational education like Robert E. Jones, Bessie B. Ramseur, James L. Moffitt, Minnie Miller Brown, T. E. Browne, and S. B. Simmons, as well as former NC governors R. Gregg Cherry and J. Melville Broughton.

As the project continues more reports, papers, photographs, educational aids, posters, scrapbooks, and even awards are being digitized from A&T’s collections. The rediscovered materials at both NCA&T and NC State University complement each other for a full multimedia history resource of our state’s agricultural development.

To see these and other resources related to the Better Living project and Community and Extension, visit the NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of imagesvideoaudio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics. While you’re at it, check out NCSU Libraries’ Historical State timeline on the Cooperative Extension Service.

By: Christopher Hogendoorn

June is the final month of the “Better Living in North Carolina” LSTA-funded grant project. Over the past two years, NCSU Libraries and the F. D. Bluford Library at NC A&T have made thousands of cooperative extension materials available online for researchers to access. Large undertakings like this don’t just happen overnight; it takes a lot of work over a long period of time to put together a project of this magnitude. Here is a look behind the scenes at the people who helped to bring “Better Living” to life.

The "Better Living" team at the State Farmers Market

[From left to right]

Brian Dietz is the Digital Program Librarian for Special Collections at NCSU Libraries. Brian is one of the co-principal investigators of the project, and acts and the technical/production lead.

Iyanna Sims is the Head of Bibliographic, Metadata & Discovery Services at the Bluford Library, and worked as the computer technology expert for NC A&T.

James Stewart is the Head of Archives & Special Collections at the Bluford Library, where he is responsible for selecting the material to be included in the project as well as performing the quality control on and the sharing of digital content with NCSU Libraries. He has been in this role since January 2017; prior to this, he worked as the project coordinator at NCSU Libraries.

Christopher Hogendoorn is the Digital Project Librarian and current project coordinator at NCSU, where he oversees the day-to-day production and quality control of all “Better Living” material.

Todd Kosmerick is the NCSU University Archivist and co-principal investigator of the project, serving as the content lead responsible for selecting the material and leading outreach efforts for the grant.

Netta Cox is the Head of Serials/Government Documents Librarian at the Bluford Library, where she is the principal investigator for the project at NC A&T, managing the overall progress of the grant.

Not pictured is Gloria Pitts, the outgoing Head of Archives & Special Collections at the Bluford Library, who also selected material to be part of the project.

We would not have been able to do this project without the assistance of our dedicated students. At NCSU Libraries, Jacque Dinnes, Derek Huss, and Jeanette Shaffer scanned and created the metadata for thousands of “Better Living” items, while Jamare Byers, Brielle Cowan, Sherilynn Knight, and Amani Newman did the corresponding work at the Bluford Library.

The end of the project is approaching, but new “Better Living” material is being added all the time, and is available as part of the NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of imagesvideoaudio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics. While you’re at it, check out the Historical State timeline on the Cooperative Extension Service.

By: Brian Dietz

The SCRC recently added issues of the Agromeck, the university’s yearbook, to the Libraries Rare and Unique Digital Collections site. We now have a near full run of the yearbook, from 1903 to 2005, available online and fully searchable.

1916 Agromeck
1916 Agromeck

1967 Agromeck
1967 Agromeck

1968 Agromeck
1968 Agromeck

1990 Agromeck
1990 Agromeck
1994 Agromeck
1994 Agromeck
2004 Agromeck
2004 Agromeck
2005 Agromeck
2005 Agromeck

These, along with other issues of the Agromeck and resources related to university history and student life, are available as part of the NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to hundreds of thousands of images, video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics. Also be sure to check out another great resource on university history, our Historical State timelines.

May 23 2017

Ethics in Archives

By: Linda Sellars

Blog post contributed by Taylor de Klerk and Jessica Serrao, Library Associates

Archival processing requires a lot of tough decisions. It may not always seem that way, but archivists are charged with holding and indefinitely preserving the cultural heritage of the communities around them. Not a small task! Archivists are responsible for acting in the best interest of these communities, and their actions must be ethically sound to uphold that trust. Because there are so many ethical concerns to consider, this blog post introduces Special Collections’ new series on archival ethics. Over the next several months, we will post regularly on topics including privacy, description, and preservation.

Special Collections Research Center Reading Room

To navigate tough ethical cases and make informed decisions, archivists use a variety of resources. We rely on archival networks for support, particularly those provided by professional organizations including the Society of American Archivists (SAA) and the Society of North Carolina Archivists (SNCA). One of SAA’s functions is to establish guidelines that help archivists work through difficult decisions. SAA’s Core Values Statement and Code of Ethics list key aspects of archival work and the values we should uphold as we collect and process archival materials. The Core Values Statement includes tenets like “Access and Use” to encourage archivists to “promote and provide the widest possible accessibility of materials.” That one seems pretty intuitive. After all, access is the fundamental mission of the profession. Other values, such as “Responsible Custody” and “Social Responsibility” look deeper at our role as stewards entrusted with preserving society’s heritage and memory.

SAA’s Code of Ethics encourages archivists to ethically acquire, protect, and provide access to collections based on the beliefs outlined in the Core Values. Contemporary archival ethics are reflective of current social, cultural, and political climates. SAA’s Committee on Ethics and Professional Conduct (CEPC) reviews the Code of Ethics periodically to ensure that it reflects current ethical discourse (for more information on the evolution of the code, see SAA’s Code of Ethics History). The code was last updated in 2012 and it outlines seven principles of which archivists should be mindful. For example, archivists should implement security measures and disaster plans to “guard all records against accidental damage, vandalism, and theft.” Other principles include “Authenticity,” “Trust,” and “Professional Relationships.”

As with many other professions, archivists find that these ethical considerations are often tied to situation and interpretation. Nurturing and maintaining professional relationships is a means by which archivists gain insight from collective experiences of those with similar dilemmas. They remind us that we aren’t alone when we make these decisions! Professional relationships can be beneficial on local, state, and national levels. Archivists have a duty to present a fair and inclusive historical record, which may be regionally shaped by demographics. Because certain issues may be specific to a state or region, local professional organizations like the Society of North Carolina Archivists (SNCA) provide even stronger ethical guidance by providing a space for peers and mentors working with similar historical collections to communicate about their experiences. By attending SNCA’s annual meeting each spring, we foster these relationships, develop support networks, and stay up to date about what is happening in North Carolina’s archivist communities.

Talking about concepts like ethics and professional values helps us be more transparent about the decisions we make behind the scenes and how they might affect archival research. Researchers have the right to know that our decisions affect their interactions with the collections they are using. It is our hope that we can help researchers better interpret the archival record by sharing how we make our decisions in this new blog series on archival ethics. Researchers can then focus more on finding beneficial primary sources and revealing their stories.

By: Virginia Ferris

Last week, members of the NC State University graduating class of 1967 joined the Alumni Association’s Forever Club, a community of alumni who graduated from NC State 50 years ago and earlier. Special Collections joined the celebration for a third year in a row, bringing a show and tell of items from the archives that reflected their time as students at NC State.

Archival materials on display for the Class of 1967 and Forever Club.

Archival materials on display for the Class of 1967 and Forever Club.

The class of 1967 would have taken classes in the newly constructed Harrelson Hall, spent time in the Erdahl-Cloyd Student Union (currently housing the Atrium and West Wing of D.H. Hill Library), witnessed the Pullen Hall fire of 1965, welcomed growing numbers of female students living in the first female dorm on campus in Watauga Hall, celebrated the first football game in the new Carter-Finley Stadium, honored legendary basketball coach Everett Case and welcomed new coach Norman Sloan, and much more.

Alumni gathered at the Park Alumni Center to kick off their reunion weekend, and spent time exploring Agromeck yearbooks, issues of the 1964-1965 Technician from their freshman year, admissions booklets for prospective students noting the price of tuition in 1964 ($162.50 per semester for in-state students), athletics programs, brochures and calendars of events in the student union, photographs, computer punch cards from the first Computing Center on campus, and more.

Alumni browse materials on display.

Alumni browse materials on display.

Alumni shared some of their memories of the events reflected in the materials on display, and several sat down to record these stories in Wolf Tales recordings that will add more nuance to the record of this period on campus. One alumnus described watching the news of the assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, and being sent home early for Thanksgiving that year. Another alumnus spoke about the excitement and challenges of using a large, shared computer in the Computing Center to complete his course work as an Electrical Engineering student.

As part of our work to document and share the history of NC State, especially from the student perspective, we look forward to collecting stories and bringing materials from the archives into the hands of alumni and other members of the NC State community. You can explore more university history through our Rare and Unique Digital Collections site, where you can also access thousands of imagesvideoaudio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics.  If you’d like to learn more about these resources or have any other questions, as always, please feel free to contact us!

By: Christopher Hogendoorn

As the “‘Better Living’ in North Carolina” project enters its final months, Special Collections staff are working hard to make many cooperative extension materials available through our Rare and Unique Digital Collections website. Recent additions to “Better Living” include digitized microfilm reports from county and state-wide extension agents. These reports exist only in microfilm format, which is difficult to use. They reveal a staggering amount of detailed information about agricultural extension and home demonstration work in North Carolina at the individual county level. The reports currently online span the years 1908 – 1935. Depending on the year and the county, there could be reports from the agricultural extension agent and the home demonstration agent in the area, and these were often divided between those serving the white and African American populations, meaning four agents could write separate reports for a single county. Furthermore, each report could contain a statistical section and a narrative section, making for a lot of reports and a lot of data.

1927 African American Home Demonstration Annual Report, Wake County

Here is the African American home demonstration statistical report from Wake County for 1927. These reports were standardized forms which the extension agents completed with information gathered during the year. In this report, we see that Wake County had two agents, Bertha Maye and Lucy James. The report also tells us that they believed there were 50 communities throughout the county in which extension work should be carried out, but only 16 communities where it actually was. Was this a funding issue, or was there trouble getting people to participate? These reports reveal how many home visits these agents made (114 visits to 62 homes) and how many phone calls they placed over the year (61 in total). Maye and James primarily led their communities through food, nutrition, and clothing demonstrations. For example, the report says that 89 women and 72 girls received instruction on preparing better school lunches and that 161 girls’ coats were made. This granular detail fills in for the researcher overlooked aspects of life at this time, providing a more holistic view.

1918 Agricultural Agent Report, Cherokee County

1918 Agricultural Agent Annual Report, Cherokee County

The 1918 white narrative report from J. H. Hampton, extension agent for Cherokee County, is similarly revealing. The narrative reports flesh out the story that the numbers only partially tell. On dairy farming, for example, Hampton writes: “One cheese factory was established in the county on the cooperative plan. In March, 100 cows were promised to furnish milk for the factory. Owing to the delay in securing equipment for the factory we did not get it started until July 29 and there was not as much milk furnished as was promised. There will be one or more carloads of high grade Holstein cows brought into this community next spring. A pure bred Holstein bull has alread[y] arrived there.” The explanation that the narrative reports provide gives context to the numbers, and the two are necessary to understand the impact cooperative extension had in any given area.

1934 Extension Entomologist Annual Report

1934 Extension Entomologist Annual Report

On top of all of these county reports, the microfilm also has state-wide extension reports which cover the program’s focus areas, like swine production, plant pathology, and home management. Altogether there is a vast amount of material in these records which document life in the aggregate in early twentieth-century North Carolina. Preventing insect damage to crop production was the responsibility of the extension entomologist, and in 1934 that was C. H. Brannon. According to him, “1934 was a season of almost unprecedented horn worm infestation on tobacco, the damage was widespread and heavy. Farmers purchased a large number of small dusters for the application of poison and excellent results were secured by those who followed recommendations. Most tobacco growers are beginning to realize that insects must be controlled if tobacco is to be grown at a profit. The excellent price for the 1934 crop will make farmers more solicitous than ever of insect infestations of the 1935 crop and we are expecting even better cooperation in the future.” To find out if Brannon’s predictions were correct, you will have to explore the 1935 entomology report yourself.

"Better Living" Microfilm Reels 132-261

Half of the "Better Living" Microfilm Reels

So far, the 177,076 pages online represents 1/4 of the “Better Living” microfilm, so there’s a lot that will be available in the coming weeks. All of the digitized microfilm from the “Better Living” project is available as part of the NCSU Libraries’ Rare and Unique Digital Collections, which provides access to thousands of imagesvideoaudio recordings, and textual materials documenting NC State history and other topics. While you’re at it, check out the Historical State timeline on the Cooperative Extension Service.

By: Todd Kosmerick

Wallace Carl Riddick, NC State's president during WWI

In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of U.S. participation in World War I, Special Collections News continues its examination of the impact that the war had on NC State students, faculty, and campus.  Visit our previous post on NC State during WWI, as well as the post by our colleagues at the NC State News blog.  The post below will look at changes in enrollment and student academic performance.

Enrollment Sank . . .

The war destabilized enrollment at NC State.  Shortly after the United States declared war on 6 April 1917, approximately 100 students withdrew from the college, even before the school year ended.  The total enrollment was less than 800 during the 1916-1917 academic year, so the early departures were significant.  As President Wallace Carl Riddick reported to the Board of Trustees in May 1917, “a majority of those withdrawing have entered some phase of military service, while quite a number have gone home to work on the farms, having been induced to do so by the shortage of labor and the active food-production propaganda which is being spread throughout the state.”

NC State College Regiment, 1917-1918 (Agromeck, 1918)

The 1917-1918 academic year saw considerably fewer students at NC State–just 629 according to Riddick’s May 1918 report to the Board of Trustees.  The junior and senior classes were halved, all graduate students had departed, and considerably fewer people had taken the short courses.  (During the early twentieth century, short courses of eight weeks or less provided training to Agricultural Extension Service agents, farmers, and other rural citizens.)  Riddick noted that the decrease “. . . is no doubt due to the fact that many men who would have taken these courses have enlisted in military service.

. . . Then Spiked

Enrollment swung in the other direction during the following year, 1918-1919.  It jumped to more than 1000 students in both full semester courses and short courses, and this was the largest enrollment at NC State up to that time.  Nearly 600 of those enrolled came to NC State because of the Student Army Training Corps (SATC), a U.S. military program designed to provide simultaneously college education and military training.  SATC completely replaced the ROTC program at NC State during the Fall 1918 semester.

“Disturbing Effect” on Students

NC State College Regiment Lined Up near Leazar Hall, 1918-1919 (Agromeck 1919)

In President Riddick’s reports to the Board of Trustees, he repeatedly lamented the effect that the war had on student academic performance.  As early as May 1917, just as one month after the war declaration, he complained that some students “. . . have simply given way to that tendency . . . to quit studying when anything exciting happens.”   A year later he claimed that there remained “. . . a feeling of unrest among our students,” caused by them foregoing class and study ” . . . to take part in many parades and public exercises in behalf of the Red Cross, Y.M.C.A., Liberty Bonds, and other special war work.”  This had a “disturbing effect,” he claimed, yet admitted that “the work of our students has, I believe, been about up to average.”  Fall 1918 saw the worst disruptions because of confusion from the newly implemented SATC program and an influenza epidemic.  Riddick merely commented, “we could hardly have expected that the work of the students would be up to the usual standard . . . .”   In future posts Special Collections news will report more on the effect of the SATC program and the flu epidemic on NC State.


The above post is primarily based on information in reports that President Wallace Carl Riddick made to the Board of Trustees.  These reports are filed with the Board of Trustees Minutes.  Similar information, although much condensed, also appears in the 1918 and 1919 Agromeck yearbooks.

By: Laura Abraham

All of the construction on Hillsborough Street may be turning the area into an unfamiliar place. However, while Hillsborough Street has been consistent in its importance to North Carolina State University and its neighborhood, it has gone through much change since it was lain in 1792.

Here are some images from the Rare and Unique Digital Collections featuring historic Hillsborough Street, including our collection’s oldest image taken in 1884, three years before the land grant college that would become NC State was chartered.

Dining hall for the Exposition of 1884, on Hillsborough Street

This dining hall was set up for the North Carolina Exposition of 1884, which highlighted the state's progress in agriculture and industry.

The location has changed greatly in the last 133 years. For instance the street once had trolley tracks for traveling towards downtown Raleigh. When the trolley was discontinued, the tracks were paved over, only to be uncovered during construction in 2010.

Trolley traveling on Hillsborough Street near the State Capitol

Trolley traveling on Hillsborough Street towards the State Capitol, 1910s

Trolley Track unearthed during Hillsborough Street roundabout construction

Trolley track unearthed during Hillsborough Street roundabout construction, 2010

From 1873-1925, the North Carolina State Fair took place across the other side of Hillsborough Street from campus, and the fair grounds today are located alongside the street, though now several miles west.

Historic Marker on Hillsborough Street about N. C. State Fair

Historic Marker on Hillsborough Street about N. C. State Fair

Fairgrounds across from Patterson Hall on Hillsborough Street

Fairgrounds across from Patterson Hall on Hillsborough Street, 1910s

Hillsborough Street has also been where NC State has held Homecoming Parades.

4-H Club float for the 1956 Homecoming Parade

4-H Club float for the Homecoming Parade, November 1956

Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity members in Homecoming Parade

Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity members in Homecoming Parade, circa 1980

During the Vietnam Era, NC State students would take Hillsborough Street to march from campus to the State Capitol building.

North Carolina college students march on the Capitol

NC State, Duke, and Carolina students marching on Capitol to protest the Kent State massacre and the US military expansion into Cambodia, May 8, 1970

While Hillsborough Street has changed so much, you can still find some familiarity in these historical images.

Aerial View of Hillsborough Street

Aerial View of Hillsborough Street, 1940s

Corner of Hillsborough Street and Horne Street

Corner of Hillsborough Street and Horne Street, circa 1980

Front view of Tompkins Hall, North Carolina State College, showing automobiles parked on Hillsborough Street

Front view of Tompkins Hall, with automobiles parked on Hillsborough Street, circa 1955

    Horse drawn carriages on Hillsborough Street, looking east toward Tompkins Hall

Horse drawn carriages on Hillsborough Street, looking east toward Tompkins Hall, circa 1921

Line in front of Brother's Pizza Palace on Hillsborough Street

Line in front of Brother's Pizza Palace on Hillsborough Street, 1975

What a history of a single street! If you enjoyed these images and want to learn more about the Special Collections Research Center and our digitized materials, please visit the Rare and Unique Digital Collections for access to thousands of images, video, audio recordings, and textual materials documenting the history of NC State and other topics.

“Hillsborough St. Timeline of History.” History | Hillsborough St Project. 2016. Accessed April 26, 2017.
“Student Life Timeline.” Historical State Timelines. Accessed April 26, 2017.
Hill, Michael. “North Carolina Exposition of 1884.” North Carolina Exposition of 1884 | NCpedia. 2006. Accessed April 26, 2017.
Mims, Bryan. “When Streetcars Ruled the Roads of North Carolina.” Our State Magazine. October 5, 2015. Accessed April 26, 2017.

Hill, Michael. “North Carolina Exposition of 1884.” North Carolina Exposition of 1884. NCpedia, 2006. Web. 26 Apr. 2017. <>.