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How to make garlic a social success

Thursday, November 4, 2010 11:50 am

Just in case you are wondering I found Sophie Lanneau’s garlic press — collection number and recipe booklet included. Click to enlarge.

Recipe book that came with Sophie Lanneau's unused garlic press

Between DSpace and the Deep Blue Sea

Wednesday, November 3, 2010 5:05 pm

“And what added greatly to our distress, while the carpenters was [sic] cutting away the main mast, a sudden gust of wind came and carried it away, about ten feet above where they was [sic] cutting; and, as it was dark, we could not see to cut away the back stays therefore they brought the head of the mast under the counter of the ship which greatly alarmed us for the ship lay rolling up on it all night and we expected her bottom would have been staved in before the morning. At this time the tiller broke so that we were left destitute of all means of help and even being saved: our livestock all perished and washed overboard, our provisions all damaged, our strength quiet exhausted with extreme fatigue and want of refreshment, our flesh worn off from our bones, our eyes sunk into our heads for want of sleep. and the boisterous wind still adding to our distress.” — ZSR, Special Collections and Archives, PCMF 5, Memoir of John Stradley, 1777-1781.

OK. So, I tried a bit to expand my acquaintance with dSpace today. The immediate task was to add an article about the Memoir of John Stradley, which we have only on microfilm, to the “item” containing the file of the digitized microfilm. An item can contain more than one thing. This is handy when, for example, one wants to unite several views or versions a something in one place (as in the back and front of a photograph).

Once I had two digital objects associated as a single item, I then needed to describe the item as having two digital objects: a scan from a microfilm of an 18th century journal and an article about that journal.

I was not very satisfied by my efforts for two reasons. First, there are no formatting options in the description window (so formatting must be done in html, right?) Question: How has the metadata been formatted up to now?

Secondly there is only the tiniest space to describe (or label) each digital object or instance. Question: is it possible to have a larger space for entering information about individual bitstreams/objects/instances?


W. J. Cash Inducted into the N.C. Hall of Fame

Monday, October 25, 2010 10:53 am

Thanks to Audra for pointing this out. See the article below.

Honoring the mind of W.J. Cash
His 1941 racial treatise puts him in the N.C. Literary Hall of Fame.
By Pam Kelley, Reading Life Editor
Posted: Sunday, Oct. 17, 2010

In 1941, Charlotte’s W.J. Cash published “The Mind of the South,” a biting treatise on the culture of the South – its racial intolerance, class system, violence. A few months later in Mexico, he apparently committed suicide.

Today, with an output of that single memorable book, Cash joins four writers being inducted into the N.C. Literary Hall of Fame.

So this seems a fine time to revisit the man who lived in Church Street’s Frederick apartments, wore a battered fedora and once referred to Charlotte as “a citadel of bigotry and obscurantism, in love with Presbyterianism, Babbittry and the Duke Power Company.”

“The Mind of the South” has never gone out of print. It still gets assigned in high school and college classrooms. [ Manuscript excerpts from Mind of South.] Charlotte’s Levine Museum of the New South even displays one of its quotes. Writing about Charlotte’s participation in an early 20th-century skyscraper boom, Cash says the Queen City “had little more use for them than a hog has for a morning coat.”

“There’s a sense of resonance when I read the book – a sense of yeah, he’s right, I still see that,” says Ed Southern, executive director of the N.C. Writers’ Network.

Says Levine Museum historian Tom Hanchett: “He’s one of the great people who got the psyche, particularly of white folks, in this part of the South.”

Still, historians over the years have questioned some of Cash’s analysis and criticized his depictions of blacks and women. That’s not surprising, Wake Forest University historian Paul Escott says. “He was critical of his region, but he didn’t free himself entirely of the way people were thinking in the 1920s and ’30s.”

Cash, born in Gaffney, S.C., moved to Boiling Springs as a boy. He graduated from Wake Forest College before becoming associate editor of the defunct Charlotte News in the late 1930s.

Cash’s work pushed later historians to reassess the reactionary and racist aspects of Southern culture, Escott says. “Many things he says are correct.”

Jack Claiborne, former associate editor of The Observer, says Cash often exaggerated for effect, much like H.L. Mencken, his editor at the American Mercury.

Yet the boosterism he attributed to Charlotte still exists, Claiborne says. “That’s a product of the fact that we were told we were insignificant, and we were trying to be significant.”

Needless to say, “you’ll not find the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce offering W.J. Cash as an important Charlottean,” Claiborne says.

Cleveland County, where Cash is buried, hasn’t been eager to enshrine him either. He never made it into the Cleveland County Historical Museum Hall of Fame, though another writer, Thomas Dixon, was a charter member. Dixon wrote racist romances, including “The Clansman,” which was made into “Birth of a Nation,” a groundbreaking silent movie that portrayed the Ku Klux Klan as heroes.

In Southern Pines today, however, Cash receives a bigger award, joining literary giants such as Thomas Wolfe, Paul Green and O. Henry.

Escott is accepting the Hall of Fame award in Cash’s honor. In his remarks, he plans to quote Cash’s description of the South as a society full of “intolerance, aversion and suspicion toward new ideas, an incapacity for analysis, an inclination to act from feeling rather than from thought, (and) an exaggerated individualism and a too-narrow concept of social responsibility.”

Escott finds that quote full of significance. The South has changed. The racism and economic backwardness that stunted Cash’s society, he says, were transformed by the civil rights movement and New South prosperity.

But to what extent, he wonders, could Cash’s assessment of the South apply to our nation, as a whole, today?

Pam Kelley: pkelley@charlotteobserver.com; 704-358-5271.

See our Wilbur J. Cash Digital Collection which contains several of the works cited in the Charlotte Observer. I suspect that the quotations used came from our digital collection.

See also: The making of ‘The Mind of the South’ in the North Carolina Miscellany blog.

Looking for Lanneau Pt. 1

Wednesday, October 20, 2010 5:27 pm

Finding the Seige of Wutang, 1926.

I’d like to try to build on earlier scanning work done with the Sophie Lanneau materials in order to bring into DSpace a bona fide “digital collection.” To that end I spent about an hour in the stacks today with one of our student assistants, Paige, trying to find viable content. I was especially interested in finding examples of Lanneau’s published and/or public writing because I felt it would be a good way to quickly build some context around the photographs that have already been scanned. There are hundreds of handwritten letters, which present a very long road to context and metadata.

Here is a photo and a poem I found in the already-scanned Lanneau materials. Lanneau copied down the poem written during the Communist siege of Wutang (1926), translated it and interpreted it. I find it moving how Lanneau takes pains to capture the Chinese meanings and render them fully to English readers.

Poems written by Wang Mei's father during the Siege of Wutang, page 1 of 2.

Photo among Lanneau Papers Box 4 folder 152

[New Zealand] Evening Post, Volume CXII, Issue 77, 28 September 1926, Page 9



PEKIN, 27th September. ….Wu Pei Fu continues his retreat. He is now Tegarded as a negligible quantity. The anti-Red campaign is almost solely in the hands of Sun Chuan Fang. Wuchang, besieged for twenty-seven days, holds out, but its resistance is dwindling on account of Wu Pei Fu’s retreat and inability to relieve the city. Twenty-two foreigners are unable to escape. There has been no communication with them for four days. The promise of the opposing armies to release 50,000 or 60,000 women and children has been withheld at the last moment. This is due to the defending general sheltering behind their presence, as the Beds refrain from a heavy shelling of the city, involving the slaughter of non-combatants. Meanwhile, the civilians are dying on all sides of starvation. Soldiers are commandeering the food.

Rebecca finds a miniature slide viewer

Thursday, September 30, 2010 2:48 pm

What curiosities did your work turn up today?

A visit to the Moravian Archives in Winston Salem

Wednesday, September 29, 2010 7:25 pm

September 28, 2010 ZSR Archivists Visit Moravian Archives’s Newly Designed Spaces

A link to 12 ppt slides documenting our lucky visit to a fascinating and well designed archive.

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