University dedicates Bluethenthal Wildflower Preserve, November 8, 1974

Brochure with map of the preserve     Front of a brochure for the preserve

This month marks 40 years since the dedication of the Herbert Bluethenthal Memorial Wildflower Preserve at UNCW on November 8, 1974. The preserve honors the memory of Herbert Bluethenthal, a successful business-owner in Wilmington.

The university set aside about 10 acres of land behind Hoggard Hall and near the university’s existing nature trail. New trails were created in order to grant easy access to areas that included excellent examples of the native flora of Southeastern North Carolina.  The preserve has been further developed over the years to offer the best examples of unique plants of the region.

The dedication ceremony featured the unveiling of the memorial to Herbert Bluethenthal by his widow, Mrs. Janet Bleuthenthal, as well as the presentation of a monument honoring contributions to botany by Dr. Bertram Wells, a noted botanist who worked in North Carolina for much of his career. Both Dr. Wells and Mrs. Bleuthenthal were honored guests at the dedication.

The preserve is intended for use both by the public as well as students in fields such as biology. The University Archives has a range of materials about Bluethenthal Wildflower Preserve and the dedication including photos, brochures, Seahawk newspaper articles, and newspaper clippings in the university’s annual scrapbooks.

2014 photo of Bluethenthal Memorial  2014 photo of bench area in Bluethenthal Preserve

Herbert's brother, Arthur, served with the French as a bomber pilot along with other Americans during World War I. He was the first North Carolinian killed in action in World War I.

 

Resources from Archives: 

Bluethenthal Preserve Brochure

The Seahawk, November 20, 1974

Photo from Dedication Ceremony

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Document Provides Historical Insight to Wilmington Artists

 

Lauren Love is an intern working in Special Collections.


While reformatting the finding aid for the collection of St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church (also known as MS 180) an excellent piece of Wilmington art history was spotted. The small booklet from 1943 was created for “An Artistic Banquet” held at the Church of the Covenant just before it was merged with St. Andrews in 1944.

Twenty Fifth Anniversary Celebration booklet published 1943

                                                    The Church of the Covenant

Before I continue, allow me to introduce myself: my name is Lauren Love and this summer I am interning in the Special Collections department of UNCW Randall Library. So far I have been buried, nose first, in MS 180 only briefly coming up for air to help move furniture and prepare for spring cleaning project which has taken over our domain (more on that in the future!).

Front cover of An Artistic BanquetBack page of An Artistic Banquet pamphlet

Initially I was struck by the hand painted illustration on the cover of the booklet whose colors contrasted so sharply with the stale yellow of ageing paper. To satisfy my curiosity, I brought the find to my supervisor, Rebecca Baugnon. “Claude Howell!” she said excitedly after flipping through to the last page; “Claude Howell?!” came the voice of Jerry Parnell, the Special Collections Coordinator from across the hall. One can imagine how my interest peeked at such reactions. Upon further inspection we found that the pamphlet was an itinerary of sorts for an educational art program where lessons in painting, watercolor, drawing and much more were offered to attendees. The investigation became an eye opening revelation about the history of Art culture in Wilmington and how, unbeknownst to me, I held in my hands a small booklet which contained the names of some local art heroes.

                   Irene Price 1930s, photograph from Two Centuries of Art in New Hanover County
                                                                  
by Crockette W. Hewlett

Unassumingly printed are the names of Peggy Hall, Claude Howell, Rosalie Oliver and Winona Gration. The details of how these artists contributed to the booklet is unknown but further research proved that they were students together under Irene Price and Delbert Palmer. Price was a friend of Elisabeth Augusta Chant who is partially responsible for encouraging and cultivating the art scene in Wilmington. Chant and Price both taught art classes in downtown Wilmington during the 1930s and went on to found and direct various programs and institutions while maintaining connections with some of the artists listed above. Simple though it may appear, the booklet shows the efforts of these budding artists to work with the community to foster a love of arts which we still see in our port city today.

Peggy Hall and students Claude Howell

                                                Peggy Hall with students 1941 (left), and Claude Howell (right)
                               Photographs from Two Centuries of Art in New Hanover County by Crockette W. Hewlett

Peggy Hall studied under Price and Chant and went on to become the director of the Wilmington Museum of Art, a museum which opened in 1940 and before World War II came to a close. She exhibited her work around the country and possessed a passion for art throughout her life.

Claude Howell would become a very influential artist who taught at UNCW and played a large role in the establishment of the Art Department. Some of his paintings are located on the first floor of the library near Port City Java and a beautiful collection of illustrated holiday cards are housed in the Special Collections Library upstairs.

Rosalie Oliver taught and spoke at the Wilmington Museum of Art.

Unfortunately I could not find any information on Winona Gration.


For more information come ask us about the following collections:
MS 063 – A Balkan Sketchbook by Claude Howell
MS 076 – Claude Howell – Classification of Art Prints
MS 326 – Claude Howell Christmas Cards

For a truly enlightening exploration of art in Wilmington read Two Centuries of Art in New Hanover County by Crockette W. Hewlett, both the pictures used in this blog post as well as the biographical information are from this thorough and entertaining book. 

Sources can be accessed by visiting Randall Library and the Special Collections Library therein:

  • An Artistic Banquet. Wilmington:  Church of the Covenant, 1943. Print. Box 10, Folder 3. St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church Collection. Randall Library Special Collections, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Wilmington, NC. May 21, 2014.
  • Hewlett, Crockette W.. Two Centuries of Art in New Hanover County. Durham: Moore Publishing Company, 1976. Print.
  • Twenty Fifth Anniversary Celebration. Wilmington: Church of the Covenant, 1943. Print. Box 10, Folder 3. St. Andrews Covenant Presbyterian Church Collection. Randall Library Special Collections, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Wilmington, NC. May 21, 2014. 

 

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University library celebrates 100,000th book, November 30, 1973

In 1973, the book collection of the William M. Randall Library of the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) reached 100,000 volumes. To celebrate, the library acquired a first edition Huck Finn by Mark Twain (published in 1885) and held a special ceremony. This first edition is in Special Collections.

An announcement for the Nov. 30 ceremony was in the Seahawk student newspaper.

For comparison, according to 2012/2013 statistics, Randall Library has 481,134 books

A couple notes from the library's history:

*Wilmington College Library moved from a few rooms in Alderman Hall to its own building during winter break of 1968. It opened in January of 1969 and the official dedication was March 30.

*Randall Libray began planning an expansion in 1985, which was completed in 1987. 

 

 


This model of Randall Library, circa 1985, is in University Archives in Randall Library at UNCW.
Randall Library Model 1985

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hot off the presses! Seahawk student newspaper now a monthly, November 3, 1958

The Seahawk, November 3, 195855 years ago, the Seahawk released its first monthly issue, becoming Wilmington College's monthly student newspaper after a period of sporadic publication. The news organization promised to striveThe Seahawk, November 3, 1958--p 2 for this level of consistency in the future.

The first Seahawk newspaper was distributed in September 1948. The year 1958 was its reinvigoration, according to the 1959 Fledgling yearbook. A Publications Board, consisting of representatives from the administration, faculty, and student body, was established to support the Seahawk.

The Seahawk remains the student news organization for the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW) to this day. Online news services are provided continually and a print newspaper is published every other week. The Seahawk was never a daily newspaper, although publication did rech twice a week at various times.

The Fledgling, 1959

 

The Seahawk, November 3, 1958--View first monthly issue

Digital Seahawk Collection, 1948-1973

How to Search the Seahawk

The Power of Print and Pixels: 65 Years of UNCW Student News - Exhibit in Special Collections Open Until Dec. 3

 

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The Order of Isaac Bear

October 15, 2013 in Randall LibraryOn October 24, 1993, a plaque was dedicated in Randall Library to commemorate and honor the members of the Order of Isaac Bear, an honorary organization of the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Former Chancellor William H. Wagoner founded the organization as a way to recognize members of the UNCW faculty. These members of the faculty had taught in the Isaac Bear building on Market Isaac Bear PortraitStreet, the original location of Wilmington College later UNCW, and were still employed by UNCW in 1987. The original Isaac Bear building had been an elementary school before it was home to Wilmington College. The former elementary school, Bear Hall on our current campus, and the Order of Isaac Bear were all named in honor of Isaac Bear, the brother of a local businessman.

As inscribed on the plaque, "Founded in 1988, the Order recognizes those who have demonstrated loyalty to UNCW, contributed to the academic quality of the University, or had a significant role in uniting the institution and the community." Listed are charter members Louis Adcock, Mary Bellamy, Walter Biggs, William Brooks, Thomas Brown, Joanne Corbett, Marshall Crews, Calvin Doss, Thomas Lupton, Dorothy Marshall, Duncan Randall, Gerald Rosselet, and Doug Swink. Chancellor Wagoner had an honorary membership. 

In 1991, the Order expanded membership beyond faculty members who worked at Wilmington College on Market Street. Members of the staff and faculty who had contributed to the development of UNCW are invited to the Order. Associate memberships are for people who aided in the founding of the institution and for members of the Board of Trustees.  

A 2007 article about the Order of Isaac Bear in UNCW Magazine

 

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Stories, Lynyrd Skynard, and Heather perform in Hanover Hall, October 17, 1973

The Seahawk, October 17, 1973Three musical acts--the Stories, Lynyrd Skynard, and Heather--played in Hanover Hall at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. The venue had a newly installed sound system for the event. Tickets for students were $2.50 in advance or $3.50 at the door.

At the time of the performance the Stories was the biggest name of the three. They had previously released two albumsUndated photograph of Hanover Hall both of which were well reviewed by the music world including Rolling Stone. The group had one popular hit with “Brother Louie.” Wes Knape, a Seahawk newspaper writer, wrote that this had been “a really great song when it was released; however...most of us are tired of it being played so often.”

Lynyrd Skynard had only released their first album in August of 1973 and had not built  up their popularity. Even though they were not nationally recognized, music critics had already begun to hail them as the next big hit to come out of the South. This would prove correct as they would become nationally recognized shortly following their performance at UNCW.

The Seahawk, October 24, 1973

According to students interviewed by the Seahawk, the concert did not exceed their expectations, especially the band Stories. The Seahawk published the thoughts of six students, one of whom did not even attend the concert. The students stated that the new sound system was “out of wack” as the instruments were louder than the vocals. Another complaint was the high number of high school students in the audience. One student protested the high cost of the ticket and suggested bringing in local bands to lower the cost, while another student complained that the bands brought in should be more “well known” and represent a greater variety of musical styles.

List of musical performers at UNCW

Spotlight about Dedication of Hanover Hall

The Seahawk, October 10, 1973The Seahawk, October 17, 1973The Fledgling, 1974

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Students launch Seahawk newspaper, September 27, 1948

First Issue of the Seahawk

Sixty-five years ago, on September 27, 1948, a group of college students published and distributed the inaugural edition of the Seahawk--a 4-page mimeographed newspaper. This was the first student publication for Wilmington College.

The charter staff members stressed the importance of the Seahawk as a current and future asset of Wilmington College:

“We are proud and honored to be able to have published this small paper as the first “SEAHAWK.” We are gratified to know that we have been the beginning of something which we believe will grow with time as Wilmington College grows. We have made a small beginning but nevertheless, have taken the first step.”

In 1969, Wilmington College became the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW).

The first Seahawk staff believed that the student newspaper would become an integral part of campus life with the continued support and excitement from the faculty and student body. In order to garner the support and participation of the student body, the Seahawk staff “extend[ed] to the student body an invitation to criticize [their] endeavors and to flail [their] paper as trash if they so desire[d]. But…also an invitation to contribute something useful or something better.” The vision and hopes of the initial Seahawk staff became a reality in 1958 when the Seahawk became a monthly publication.
 

The Seahawk, September 27, 1948 (PDF)

Digital Seahawk Collection, 1948-1973

How to Search the Seahawk

The Power of Print and Pixels: 65 Years of UNCW Student News - New Exhibit in Special Collections Open Until Dec. 3

 

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College selects property for new campus, September 18, 1958

President Randall with members of the Board of TrusteesJohn T. Hoggard, William M. Randall, Trustee L. Bradford Tillery, and unidentified College Trustee examine plans for new property. (Photo courtesy of Tyrone Rowell)
 

       On September 18, 1958, the Board of Trustees agreed to purchase land off NC Hwy 132 for Wilmington College's first campus. This campus became the permanent home for the college and eventually the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

The Board of Trustees had previously rejected two possible sites--Hugh MacRae Park and the municipal golf course--due to public controversy.

In 1958 Wilmington College was located in the Isaac Bear Building on Market Street. The Board of Trustees knew the college had outgrown this space and needed another location, but the board did not merely plan for immediate growth. Instead, the members chose a property that would fulfill future needs of expansion. The new property consisted of over 600 acres.

The ability of Wilmington College to purchase the land stemmed from the passage of the North Carolina House Bill 761, An Act to Provide a Plan of Organization and Operation for Community Colleges (1957). It was the first Community College Act in North Carolina. Both Wilmington College and Williston College--a unit of Wilmington College for African American students--were included by name in this act, as they were two-year schools at the time. The act gave the trustees the authority to purchase land deemed “necessary for the proper operation of the college.” It also allowed for the trustees to present the need for a tax levy to the County Commissioners, who would approve a public bond vote. The state would match funds raised by the college up to $600,000 as long as the request was made before June 30, 1958.

Following these guidelines, the Wilmington College Board of Trustees agreed in April 1958 to bring a resolution before the New Hanover County Commissioners. The County Commissioners approved the resolution unanimously and set the bond vote for May 30, 1958. The citizens of New Hanover County voted to support Wilmington College and the bond passed.

The Seahawk Newspaper

Board of Trustees Minutes--April 1, 1958, approved resolution to go before the County Commissioners

New Hanover County Commissioners Minutes--April 14, 1958, approval for the bond vote

Board of Trustees Minutes--September 9, 1958, approved the use of funds to buy land for expansion

Board of Trustees Minutes--September 18, 1958, selected the land on NC Hwy 132 for expansion site

Board of Trustees Minutes--September 22, 1958, approved architect and planned for future growth

Board of Trustees Minutes--December 8, 1958, final approval for the purchase of the land off NC Hwy 132

 

First Campus MapUnidentified College Trustee, Trustee L. Bradford Tillery, William M. Randall, and John T. Hoggard examine plans for new College property. (Photo courtesy of Tyrone Rowell)
 

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Desegregation begins at Wilmington College, September 10, 1962

 
Posted: September 10, 2013
 
Photo of Judge Ernest Fullwood in 1992


Marshall Collins and Ernest Fullwood were the first African Americans to attend Wilmington College--the institution that grew into the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW).

Fullwood became the first African American student to serve on the Wilmington College Student Senate, and in March of 1966 he was the first African American graduate. Fullwood became an attorney and judge, and Marshall Collins became a minister. Fullwood returned to UNCW on April 17, 2004 to administer the Chancellor's oath of office to Rosemary DePaolo at her installation.

Until September of 1962, African American students attended class at the Williston College campus of Wilmington College. Due to segregation, African American students were not allowed to enroll at the College Road campus.

UNCW Desegregation  

On July 15, 1981, Dr. H. Eaton, chair of the Board of Trustees recalled a meeting he had with Dr. John T. Hoggard in 1961:

It has been 20 years and almost four months to the day since I sat in the parlor of Dr. John T. Hoggard, the Founder of this Institution, and expressed to him my disappointment and concern with the unfairness of the grossly unequal dual program of college education being provided for white students as compared to that being provided for Negro students  ....

A gentlemen’s agreement was reached. With a handshake and no paperwork, Dr. Eaton and Dr. Hoggard agreed that Dr. Eaton would not pursue legal action against the College, and in return Wilmington College would begin admitting qualified African American students in September of 1962 (From These Beginnings: Wilmington College, 1946-1969). 

From the University Archives--This Week in UNCW History: Dr. Eaton was first African American chair of UNCW Board of Trustees, July 15, 1981

1966 Wilmington College graduation program

Memo to the Media: Installation Activities April 14-16, 2004

 

Fledgling 1964Marshall Collins' picture, Wilmington College yearbook 1964

 

 

 

Fledgling 1964Ernest Fullwood's picture, Wilmington College yearbook 1964

 

 

 

Fledgling 1965Ernest Fullwood on Student Senate, Wilmington College yearbook 1965

 

 

 

 

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Archive

Updates from Special Collections and University Archives