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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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North Caroliniana Society

by H. G. Jones, 2006; Revised December 2021

Logo of the North Caroliniana Society. Image from the North Caroliniana Society.The North Caroliniana Society was founded in 1975 by H. G. Jones, William S. Powell, and Louis M. Connor Jr. for the promotion of knowledge and appreciation of North Carolina's historical, cultural, and literary heritage. A nonprofit corporation under provisions of the General Statutes of North Carolina, the society elects to membership individuals meeting a strict criterion of "adjudged performance" in service to the state-that is, those who have demonstrated a continuing interest in and support of North Carolina's historical, literary, and cultural strengths. Membership is limited, and there are no dues. The major beneficiary of the society is the North Carolina Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where the society's office is located, but assistance is also given to other agencies and organizations with kindred objectives. The society also sponsors or cosponsors conferences and symposiums, such as the International Sir Walter Raleigh Conference in 1987 during the quadricentennial of the Roanoke voyages, For History's Sake: State Historical Collections in the Early Republic in 1994 during the sesquicentennial of the North Carolina Collection, and Lawson's Legacy: Nature Writing and North Carolina, 1701-2001 in 2001. From 1992 to 2002, the North Caroliniana Society cosponsored the Second Sunday Readings Series with the North Carolina Collection and the Creative Writing Program in UNC's Department of English. Free and open to the public, the series hosted 122 North Carolina writers of fiction, nonfiction, and poetry during its ten-year history.

Dating from 1978, the North Caroliniana Society Award annually recognizes distinguished service in the encouragement, production, and preservation of North Caroliniana. Recipients through 2006 have included Doris Betts, Archie K. Davis, Wilma Dykeman, Sam J. Ervin Jr., William and Ida Friday, Paul Green, Frank B. Hanes Sr., Richard H. Jenrette, Frank H. Kenan, Charles Kuralt, William S. Powell, Reynolds Price, W. Trent Ragland Jr., and J. LeRoy T. Walker. In its first 20 years, the society published 25 numbers in its North Caroliniana Society Imprints series and five North Caroliniana Society Keepsakes. Beginning in 1976, the annual reports of the society and the North Carolina Collection were published together.

In 1987 the Research Triangle Foundation gave the society an endowment fund of $250,000, the income from which during the following 15 years assisted more than 100 scholars in gaining access to original source materials on North Carolina history through Archie K. Davis Fellowships, named for the foundation's retiring chairman. In 2002 the North Caroliniana Society created a $25,000 endowment in the names of Alice and Jerry Cotten, longtime employees of the North Carolina Collection at Wilson Library, who retired that year. Interest from the endowment will be used to promote the study of novelist, playwright, and Asheville native Thomas Wolfe and to preserve photographs related to the state.

Additional Resources:

North Caroliniana Society official website: (accessed October 24, 2012).

Image Credits:

"North Caroliniana Society Logo." North Caroliniana Society. (accessed October 24, 2012).