Wilson Library

Meet Me on the Midway: Three Centuries of Fairs in North Carolina

fairs exhibit flyer

Early North Carolina fairs included exhibits to show farmers the latest developments in raising crops and animals. Fairs also provided welcome social interaction and entertainment for rural families. By the 1890s, the carnival midway with its sideshows and amusement rides had become a fair mainstay. Over the decades, fair entertainment has evolved along with the changing interests of fairgoers.

Today, more than forty agricultural fairs happen in North Carolina each year. This exhibition examines the origins of the agricultural fair and the changes that have kept it relevant for more than two hundred years.

July 5 through October 31, 2017
North Carolina Collection Gallery
Free and open to the public

Between Midnight and Day: The Photography of Dick Waterman

Promo graphic for exhibit, with three black and white photos of musicians.

Photographs of some of the greatest musical performers of the last half-century can be seen in the fourth-floor reading room. They are the work of Dick Waterman, a photographer, agent, and music promoter, who played a key role in the folk revival movement of the 1960s. Between Midnight and Day: The Photography of Dick Waterman includes images of Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Buddy Guy, Janis Joplin, Bonnie Raitt, and Mick Jagger. Waterman’s unparalleled access allowed him to capture the artists during the intensity of performance, as well as at leisure. Waterman’s personal collection is part of the Southern Folklife Collection.

September 26, 2017 – Decmber 22, 2017
Fourth-floor reading room
Free and open to the public

“Swampland Jewels” Compilation of Classic Cajun Music Out Sept 22

Album cover for Swampland Jewels

The Southern Folklife Collection is pleased to announce the release of “Swampland Jewels,” a compilation of classic Cajun, zydeco, rock ‘n roll and R&B music from East Texas and Southwest Louisiana, on September 22. The record, which was remixed and remastered from the original studio masters, is being released in partnership with Yep Roc Records.

For more information, see the announcement on the Yep Roc Records website.

Transforming Gifts: How Donors Have Built the Special Collections at Wilson Library

Transforming gifts graphic (Wilson building with "Transforming Gifts" text)

The aspirations of a teenager in coal country and the misdeeds of nineteenth-century UNC students are among the unanticipated moments tucked into a new exhibition at the Wilson Special Collections Library. Transforming Gifts: How Donors Have Built the Special Collections at Wilson Library highlights gifts both large and small that have made Wilson Library one of the leading special collections in the South.

“Celebrating our donors is, at its heart, a celebration of the work of the Library,” said Maria R. Estorino, associate University librarian for special collections and director of the Louis Round Wilson Library.

September 13, 2017 – January 7, 2018
Melba Remig Saltarelli Exhibit Room
Free and open to the public

Weekend reading room changes

Photo of wilson library

Starting August 5, all special collections materials will be served in the second-floor reading room on weekends. All collection materials will be available. We look forward to helping you with your research!

Please contact us with any questions.

Maria R. Estorino to Lead Wilson Special Collections Library

Maria Estorino

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) Library is pleased to announce the appointment of Maria R. Estorino as director of the Louis Round Wilson Library and associate University librarian for special collections, effective January 1, 2017. Read more about this appointment on the Library’s news blog.

Alumna Florence Fearrington Gives $5 Million to Wilson Special Collections Library


University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill alumna Florence Fearrington has given $5 million to the University Library in support of the Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library. The gift is the largest ever made to Carolina’s libraries. In recognition, the grand reading room in Wilson Library will be renamed the Fearrington Reading Room. Fearrington, a 1958 graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill, was honored as a Distinguished Alumna at this year’s University Day convocation, on Oct. 11, for her pioneering career in finance and her achievements as a collector of rare books. The full story is on the Library’s news blog.

UNC T-shirt archive

UNC t-shirts

The University Archives has launched an online UNC T-Shirt Archive that archivists hope will capture a fun and meaningful facet of campus life. The T-shirt archive seeks only photographs of T-shirts, not the actual items. There are two ways to contribute:

  1. Visit unctshirtarchive.tumblr.com to learn about the project and upload a photograph of your t-shirt;
  2. Share on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #MyUNCTShirt. If it’s a t-shirt not yet in the collection, an archivist will reach out to you.

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