Summary

This guide identifies collections belonging to religious entities, such as churches and clergy, as well as others who maintained collections with religious content. These include UNCW professors who taught religion, writers whose works have a religious focus, and individuals who were involved with various religious organizations. Religions including Catholicism, Judaism, and multiple Protestant denominations, such as Episcopal, Presbyterian, and Methodist are represented. Most churches are local to Southeastern North Carolina. Material includes church documents, financial ledgers, birth and death records, meeting minutes, grave information, sermons, programs, publications, and correspondence.

Also included are collections and content from military chaplains, who serve as the military’s religious leaders, taking care of service member spirituality and morality. These chaplains served in all branches of the military, in nearly every major conflict throughout the last century. Their personal experiences are shared through their collections and/or oral history interviews. Collection material includes records, correspondence, photographs, publications, memorabilia, and oral histories. Subject matter covers education, time in the service, religion, war injuries, life after the military, personal stories, and memorial events. 

NOT PUBLISHED

Digital Collections

Centuries of Service: Military Chaplains in the USA

This site both celebrates and illuminates the history of the US Military Chaplains. These men and women have dedicated their lives to our country and have served the soldiers, sailors and airmen as well as families by guiding and comforting all in religious and spiritual matters.

This site contains: transcriptions of interviews with Chaplains; numerous histories in searchable full-text digital format; bibliography to print and electronic sources; and links to associated websites.

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Recommended Databases

Religion Database

This database provides a wide range of primarily full-text, international periodicals for diverse religious and spiritual studies, covering formal theological studies of major religions, as well as the most recent trends and scholarly thought. Included are titles from religious publishing bodies and nondenominational organizations. The resource reflects a wide spectrum of religious belief systems and supports the global study of religion. Source of religious news and information, informative details on doctrines and philosophies, and scholarly reports on religious history.

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ATLA Historical Monographs Collection

With the ATLA Historical Monographs Collection (11 Series), religion and theology scholars can focus their research on the era and topics that most closely fit their fields of study. Eleven thematic series provide researchers with specialized content spanning from the 13th century through 1922.

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Twentieth Century Religious Thought, Volume 1: Christianity

A multivolume, cross-searchable online collection that brings together the seminal works and archival materials related to worldwide religious thinkers, from the early 1900s until the turn of the 21st century. The collection is fully cross-searchable with the volumes on Judaism, Islam, and Eastern Religions.

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Religious Magazine Archive

Archive of magazines devoted to religious topics, spanning 19th-21st centuries and a range of religions/denominations. Aimed originally at a wide audience, they disclose many aspects of the history of popular religious movements.

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Manuscript Collections - Personal Papers

MS 028 Robert E. Tapp Private Papers

This collection contains the personal family photo album of the Robert Estworthy Tapp family. There are also photographs dated between 1870 and the early 1900s of downtown Wilmington, North Carolina, a letter to Tapp from Louis T. Moore, Manager of the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce and the typescript of a September 2, 1948 article from the Wilmington Morning Star, now the Wilmington Star News.

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MS 042 Edwin E. Kirton Family Private Papers

This collection contains correspondence, newspaper clippings, church programs and scrapbooks as well as a large collection of sheet music that belonged to Mrs. Kirton. The scrapbooks in this collection highlight Father Kirton's career and other family events and the social column written by Mrs. Kirton for the Afro American newspaper.

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MS 058 The Rabbi Samuel Mendelsohn Manuscripts Collection

This collection contains two hundred and fourteen sermons, lectures, essays and several letters written by Dr. Mendelsohn.

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MS 087 Cardinal Eugene Tisserant Papers

This collection contains a holiday card, Vatican library catalog card, and autographed photograph of Cardinal Eugene Tisserant from his friend and associate, William Madison Randall.

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MS 096 Rabbi Thurman Collection

This collection contains oversized volumes of cantor's music in Hebrew, loose leaves of printed music, Yiddish posters, Hebrew choral manuscripts in parts Haggadah (Hebrew-English), an oral history with Trudi Rosenthal of the Holocaust, and Rabbi Thurman's last sermon.

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MS 106 Wallace C. Murchison Papers

The Wallace C. Murchison Papers contain personal correspdonce, financial documents, memos and programs, his political work with Senator Alton Lennon and New Hanover County polling sites, publications and correspondence regarding the Diocese of Eastern Carolina, wills and financial documents of the Diocese, publications on housing from the government and private companies, Murchison's home floor plans, and housing advertisements and handwritten specifications for additions.

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MS 122 Susan Taylor Block Collection

This collection contains various articles and letters written by Susan Taylor Block, as well as photographs, of local and historical events of importance in the Lower Cape Fear.

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MS 123 Dr. Gerald H. Shinn Collection

Materials in this collection include Dr. Shinn's curriculum vitae and teaching philosphy, course syllabi, newspaper articles, photographs, various art prints and two framed images of Shinn. Also included is a vast slide collection related to archaeological digs in Israel and the middle east, european travel, art history, archaeological digs at Poplar Grove Plantation, North Carolina Living Treasures recipients and Schweitzer Prizes award ceremonies.

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MS 159 Paul Wilkes Collection

This collection contains the papers, records, research, teachings, and publications of writer Paul Wilkes.

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MS 161 Dr. James J. Megivern Collection

This collection contains papers and publications of Dr. James J. Megivern, with emphasis on the religious nature of his work.

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MS 164 B. Frank Hall Collection

This collection contains B. Frank Hall's writings and religious sermons, including from his work as a pastor at Pearsall Memorial Presbyterian and while a professor and head of the Philosophy and Religion department when UNCW first formed as Wilmington College. Material is from the 1930s-1950s, though a majority is undated.

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MS 172 Dr. Thomas Fanning Wood Family Papers

Papers of the Dr. T. F. Wood family of Wilmington, NC. Includes Dr. Woods's Civil War recollections, correspondence, writings of Dr. Edward Jenner Wood, and genealogy of the Wood family.

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MS 173 Thomas A. Moore Personal Papers

This collection consists of personal papers, correspondence, photographs, programs, records, videotapes, and cassette tape recordings covering Mr. Moore’s education and career from 1985-1999.

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MS 186 Bradley Jewett Wootten and Family Collection

This collection contains correspondence, photographs, newspaper articles and ephemera relating to life of Lt. Bradley Jewett Wootten from 1895 to his death in 1901. Most of the correspondence in this collection is between members of the Wootten family.

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MS 192 Oscar Pearsall Personal and Business Papers

This collection contains ledgers, correspondence, bills and shipping labels related to Oscar Pearsall's whole grocery businesses Hall & Pearsall and Pearsall & Company. Also included are medical insurance certificates and related correspondence for Oscar Pearsall.

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MS 193 Pastoral Summit 2001

Research relating to the 2001 Pastoral Summit in New Orleans, including correspondence, a questionnaire sent to churches, publications, brochures, minutes, photographs, and research notes.

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MS 228 Bishop Thomas Henry Wright Sermons

This collection primarily contains sermons and essays written by Bishop Thomas Henry Wright from 1928 through the 1980's. Other documents on local churches and historis are also included.

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MS 232 Rabbi James L. Apple Collection

This collection follows James Apple’s career as a military chaplain, a Naval Officer and teacher, and includes correspondence, commendations, awards and citations.

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MS 300 Pearsall Family Papers

Contains personal letters between various members of the Pearsall family from the late 1800s to early 1900s, as well as bills, account statements, and the articles of agreement for the 2nd Presbyterian Church.

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MS 332 Dr. Walter H. Conser Jr. Papers

This collection consists of the accumulated working papers of professor, historian, and author Dr. Walter Conser Jr. between 1970 and 2014. The collection is comprised primarily of research materials, in English and German, including articles, magazines, newspapers, books in whole or part, and associated notes; also included are publishing documents, personal and professional corresondence, newsletters, serials, memorablia, personal papers, and materials documenting Dr. Walter Conser Jr.'s participation in professional and academic panels, conferences, and events.

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MS 336 John Murchison Collection

Contains correspondence, newspaper clippings, publications, diaries, and photographs, primarily associated with Rt. Rev. Thomas Atkinson, his family and other unidentified individuals.

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MS 366 Emancipation Anniversary Sermon Collection

This collection contains two sermons written around 1898 regarding 35 years of slavery emancipation, first initiated during the United States Civil War in 1863 by President Abraham Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation.

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Special Collections Vertical Files

The Special Collections vertical files are compiled by Special Collections staff on an ongoing basis and contain material such as articles, photographs, maps, emphemera, etc. of various persons, places, organizations, and topical subjects related to UNCW and Southeastern North Carolina history.

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Manuscript Collections - Churches

MS 075 Protestant Episcopal Church Resolution

The clergy and laity of the Protestant Episcopal Church of New York City met in the Lecture Room of Christ Church on September 14, 1829 to adopt measures to establish the Protestant Episcopal Church in the Territory of Florida. Rev. Dr. Lyell was appointed chairman and Rev. John M. Guion, secretary. The members resolved to meet again the following Friday evening and to invite other interested clergy and laity to address the issue. Extract from the minutes.

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MS 169 St. James' Episcopal Church Records

The collection consists of original papers, handwritten ledgers, bills, account books, early personal checks, indentures, letters, church records, and hand drawn town maps. The early church was est. 1729 in Newtown (Wilmington).

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MS 180 St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church Collection

This collection includes historical data on St. Andrews-Covenant Presbyterian Church, beginning in 1818 with the First Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, and continuing through the founding of the Second Presbyterian Church in 1858--renamed St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in 1888, the establishment of the Church of the Covenant in 1917, and the 1944 merging of St. Andrews Presbyterian and the Church of the Covenant.

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MS 253 St. Paul's Episcopal Church Papers

This collection contains documents, ephemera, minutes, pamphlets, photographs, publications and record books pertaining to the history and operations of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Wilmington, North Carolina. Items in this collection cover the history of the church, its buildings, finances, parishioner groups and relationship with the Diocese of Eastern Carolina, dating from 1858 to 1997. 

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MS 258 2nd Presbyterian Church Ledger

This collection contains a financial ledger from the 2nd Presbyterian Church in Wilmington, NC, belonging to Oscar Pearsall, the treasurer.

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MS 360 St. Luke Zion AME Church Collection

This collection contains documents and photos of the St. Luke AME Zion Church in Raleigh, NC, especially focused on the 145th anniversary on April 4, 2010. There is a booklet commemorating the event. Within the booklet, there is a message from Reverend Williams L. Johnson III thanking the people who put together and attended the celebration, as well as their dedication to the church. Also, there is a brief history of the church and congratualtions from members of the community wishing the church a happy anniversary.

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MS 378 Winter Park Presbyterian Church Collection

This collection contains a typed supplement to the publication, "Winter Park Presbyterian Church, The People and Times: A History, One Hundred Years 1913-2013," by Sherman Hayes, of which he also wrote. This supplement contains church information such as a directory, list of elders, deacons, women of the Church officers, and long-time members, as well as historical events occuring over the hundred years of the Church's existence.

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MS 379 Pearsall Memorial Presbyterian Church Collection

Contains church records, newsletters, histories, directories, event documents, architectural drawings, church bulletins, tapes, photographs, and CDs containing photos from the 1930s to the 2000s. A large amount focuses on The Women of the Church (WOC), a woman-focused group of the Church.

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Special Collections Vertical Files

The Special Collections vertical files are compiled by Special Collections staff on an ongoing basis and contain material such as articles, photographs, maps, emphemera, etc. of various persons, places, organizations, and topical subjects related to UNCW and Southeastern North Carolina history.

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Manuscript Collections - Military Chaplains

MS 232 Rabbi James L. Apple Collection

This collection follows James Apple’s career as a military chaplain, a Naval Officer and teacher, and includes correspondence, commendations, awards and citations.

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MS 273 Thomas M. Groome, Jr. Collection

Artifacts, papers, and photos documenting Thomas Groome's 25 years as an Air Force Chaplain, from 1949 - 1974.

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MS 297 Chaplain Charles Baldwin Collection

This collection contains a variety of publications related to military chaplaincy, particularly on the subjects of Lutheran chaplaincy and the Vietnam war. 

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MS 299 Chaplain William Calbert Collection

Contains letters, photographs, papers, and memorabilia belonging to Chaplain William E. Calbert and his service with the U.S. Army, about his family, and various memorial service events.

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Special Collections Vertical Files

The Special Collections vertical files are compiled by Special Collections staff on an ongoing basis and contain material such as articles, photographs, maps, emphemera, etc. of various persons, places, organizations, and topical subjects related to UNCW and Southeastern North Carolina history.

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Oral Histories

The below is sampling of oral histories with religious content or with military chaplains. To explore more interviews, please search the Oral History Collection.

Interview with Walter Harrelson (Oral History)

In this interview, Dr. Walter Harrelson discusses his North Carolina upbringing and his academic history and career. He includes his time spent studying at Chapel Hill, Union Seminary, and at Berle in Switzerland, where he studied with Karl Barth. Dr. Harrelson served as Dean at the University of Chicago and Vanderbilt Divinity School, where he was also a professor, and is the author of several books as well as the chair of the translation committee for the New Revised Standard version of the Bible. Dr.

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Interview with James Megivern, Pt. 1 (Oral History)

This is the first tape in a two-tape interview of Dr. James J. Megivern, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy and Religion at UNCW. Dr. Megivern discusses his training, education and work experiences prior to coming to UNCW in 1974. He discusses his service as chair of the department from January 1975-1992. He also describes the UNCW Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), which he served as president. The interview includes conversation of some of Dr. Megivern's teaching and scholarly interests.

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Interview with James Megivern, Pt. 2 (Oral History)

In tape 2 of this two-part interview, Dr. Megivern continues discussion of his teaching and scholarly interests, and also discusses his work on behaf of the Wilmington community. He discusses his research on the death penalty, and the 1999 publication of his book, a scholarly look at Christianity and capital punishment. Dr. Megivern also discusses his work to improve race relations in Wilmington and in North Carolina. He has written about the Wilmington Ten, and he served as co-chair of the 1898 Foundation with Bertha Todd in 1998, the centennial year.

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Interview with Jim McGowan (Oral History)

Dr. James K. McGowan, UNCW Professor Emeritus, studied philosophy at Mary Immaculate College, the Catholic University of America, and the University of Louvain. Joining UNCW's Philosophy and Religion Department in 1971, Dr. McGowan taught introductory courses, which he found most rewarding. In this interview, he discusses his schooling, theories of teaching, and years in administration, as well as the growth of the department.

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Interview with James Apple (Oral History)

An oral history interview with military chaplain, Rabbi James Apple.

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Interview with Thomas Groome (Oral History)

Oral history interview with military chaplain, Thomas Groome.

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Interview with Charles C. Baldwin (Oral History)

Oral history interview with Brigadier General Chaplain Charles C. Baldwin.

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Interview with William Calbert (Oral History)

Oral history interview with military chaplain, William Calbert.

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Contact Librarian

Portrait of Rebecca Baugnon
Rebecca
Baugnon
Special Collections Librarian
Phone Number: 
Office: 
RL2042J

Contact Staff

Portrait of Nicole Yatsonsky
Nicole
Yatsonsky
Library Specialist
Phone Number: 
Office: 
RL2042J