This annual report was submitted to the Association of Librarians & Archivists at Baptist Institutions (ALABI).

North Carolina Baptist Historical Collection (Special Collections & Archives (SCA)),
Z. Smith Reynolds Library, Wake Forest University

The North Carolina Baptist Historical Collection had another productive year for 2021. Among its activities were the following:


Throughout 2021, SCA continued to create metadata for our CLIR-funded Recordings at Risk Grant which provided support for digitizing open-reel and cassette audiotapes for the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina. In 2021, 330 metadata records were created by SCA staff and students. These recordings document the American evangelical movement and contain presentations by prominent Southern Baptist pastors and church representatives at evangelical conferences and annual meetings of the Convention. Nearly 700 recordings remain needing metadata.

Digitizing Baptist files:

The Baptist Church and Association files continue to be digitized and 50,483 pages were scanned in 2021. 133 boxes have been completed, out of 193 boxes total. We are also in the process of re-digitizing the Biblical Recorder due to the increasing costs of the third-party proprietary platform which currently hosts the issues.

Processing, Reference, and Outreach:

During 2021, we accessioned 6 accretions (nearly 10 linear ft.) for Baptist collections and received numerous publications for addition to our collection of monographs and serials. Of special significance are the papers of Reverend Harold McKinnish. Known for his oratory, compassion, and humor, the Reverend McKinnish served as pastor or interim pastor at 10 different Baptist churches in North and South Carolina. He delivered thousands of sermons, conducted more than 1,100 funerals, and preached at more than 400 revivals across 12 states. This collection includes sermons, music, and video recordings. His daughter, Dr. Linda McKinnish Bridges, is currently working on his biography.

The Wake Forest Baptist Student Union recently celebrated their 100th anniversary, and as part of that, all our Baptist Student Union records from multiple NC universities were processed and the finding aids are now available online.

We responded to 102 requests and visitors for our Baptist collections. During the beginning months of 2021, the Wake Forest campus remained closed to external researchers and our reference work included conducting research and scanning materials for patrons. A special thank you to Public Services Archivist Rebecca Petersen May and Archives Assistant Finley Turner for handling these requests.

Tanya Zanish-Belcher, Director-Special Collections & Archives, Wake Forest University