This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the Duplication Policy section for more information.
|Size||About 9,500 items (25.5 linear feet)|
|Abstract||The papers of white historian and founding director of the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina J.G. (Joseph Grégoire) de Roulhac Hamilton (1878-1961) document his education including graduate work at Columbia University under William A. Dunning (1857-1922); service in the United States Army during and after the First World War; career as a teacher, historian, and archivist; publishing; travel and curatorial work related to the Southern Historical Collection; social life and civic engagement in Hillsborough and Chapel Hill, N.C.; North Carolina politics including his advocacy for a state constitutional convention in the 1910s and participation in the state's Democratic Party; and historical research especially as related to Confederate generals, Reconstruction, northern "carpet-baggers," white Democratic "Redeemers," and nineteenth-century white supremacist and domestic terror groups such as the Ku Klux Klan. The collection contains correspondence; diaries; scrapbooks; published and unpublished writings; speeches; photographs; and research materials. Correspondents include historians R.D.W. Connor and Dunning; University of North Carolina faculty and administrators; state and national politicians; business leaders; individuals and families who donated their papers to the Southern Historical Collection; and members of his family. The papers reflect Hamilton's historical, political, and social perspectives that were brought to bear on his collecting manuscript materials documenting affluent white families of the nineteenth and early twentieth-century American South.|
|Creator||Hamilton, Joseph Grégoire de Roulhac, 1878-1961.|
|Curatorial Unit||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Historical Collection.|
The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.
Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.
|1878||Born in Hillsborough, N.C. on 6 August to Daniel Heyward Hamilton (1838-1908) and Frances Gray Roulhac Hamilton (1839-1897).|
|1900||Graduated from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn. with a master's degree.|
|1901||Began teaching at the Horner Military School in Oxford, N.C.|
|1904-1906||Served as principal of Wilmington (N.C.) High School.|
|1906||Graduated from Columbia University in New York, N.Y., with a Ph.D. He studied with historian William A. Dunning.|
|1906||Appointed as associate professor of history at the University of North Carolina.|
|1908||Married Mary Amelia Thompson.|
|1908||Named Alumni Professor and chair of the History Department at the University of North Carolina.|
|1910||Birth of his son Roulhac Hamilton (1910-1981).|
|1912||Birth of his son Alfred Thompson Hamilton (1912-1993).|
|1914||Published Reconstruction in North Carolina.|
|1916||Published Party Politics in North Carolina, 1835-1860.|
|1918||Served as director of the War Issues Course for the Fourth District Students Army Training Corps.|
|1919||Served as a lecturer in the Citizenship Unit of the Army Educational Corps.|
|1919||Published History of North Carolina with co-authors R.D.W. Connor and William Kenneth Boyd.|
|1920-1922||Served as a consultant in general education to the U.S. War Department General Staff.|
|1927||Published Henry Ford, the Man, the Worker, the Citizen.|
|14 January 1930||Southern Historical Collection established at the University of North Carolina.|
|1930||Resigned as chair of the History Department at the University of North Carolina and appointed director of the newly established Southern Historical Collection.|
|1930-1951||Served as director of the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina.|
|1961||Died on 10 November.|
The papers of white historian and founding director of the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina J.G. (Joseph Grégoire) de Roulhac Hamilton (1878-1961) document his education including graduate work at Columbia University under William A. Dunning (1857-1922); service in the United States Army during and after the First World War; career as a teacher, historian, and archivist; publishing; travel and curatorial work related to the Southern Historical Collection; social life and civic engagement in Hillsborough and Chapel Hill, N.C.; North Carolina politics including his advocacy for a state constitutional convention in the 1910s and participation in the state's Democratic Party; and historical research especially as related to Confederate generals, Reconstruction, northern "carpet-baggers," white Democratic "Redeemers," and nineteenth-century white supremacist and domestic terror groups such as the Ku Klux Klan. The collection contains correspondence; diaries; scrapbooks; published and unpublished writings; speeches; photographs; and research materials. Correspondents include historians R.D.W. Connor and Dunning; University of North Carolina faculty and administrators; state and national politicians; business leaders; individuals and families who donated their papers to the Southern Historical Collection; and members of his family. The papers reflect Hamilton's historical, political, and social perspectives that were brought to bear on his collecting manuscript materials documenting affluent white families of the nineteenth and early twentieth-century American South.Back to Top
The Correspondence Series is divided into chronological (1.1) and alphabetical subseries (1.2). Series 1.1 consists of personal and professional correspondence documenting Hamilton's life as a student at the University of the South and at Columbia University and his career as an historian and director of the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C. Series 1.2 consists of correspondence regarding personal and domestic matters and also publications, university business, and reference assistance for collections in the Southern Historical Collection. Letters from Hamilton's sons, Roulhac Hamilton and Alfred T. Hamilton, are primarily found in Subseries 1.2.
Chiefly personal and professional correspondence. Early folders contain letters and other materials from Hamilton's time as a student at the University of the South and later at Columbia University under William A. Dunning. The bulk of this series consists of personal letters from family, friends, fellow historians, and university administrators. There are also requests for research assistance from students, colleagues, and members of the public.
A considerable number of letters and other documents relate to Hamilton's publications, including a co-written school textbook on United States history, Our Republic (1910); Reconstruction in North Carolina (1910); Party Politics in North Carolina (1916); North Carolina since 1860 (1919);biographical studies of Robert E. Lee, Andrew Johnson, Abraham Lincoln, and Henry Ford; as well as surveys of significant manuscript collections in the Southern Historical Collection, shorter published essays, and newspaper articles. There is also substantial correspondence relating to Hamilton's participation in professional associations, including the North Carolina Historical Commission, the Southern Historical Association, and the American Historical Association.
Frequent correspondents include James Sprunt (1846-1924); R.D.W. Connor (1878-1950), historian and from 1934 the first Archivist of the United States; Louis Round Wilson (1876-1979); historian E. Merton Coulter (1890-1981); David A. Shepherd, a fellow alumnus of the University of the South; A.R. Newsome; and Charles W. Dabney. Most of the correspondence from Hamilton's sons Roulhac and Alfred T. Hamilton is filed in subseries 1.2.
Includes some letters from Hamilton to his parents, his father's will, and materials relating to graduate school and his appointment at the University of North Carolina.
Includes letters relating to an attempt to lure Hamilton to Cornell University and Hamilton's wedding to Mary Thompson.
Includes a short note from Woodrow Wilson and Hamilton's inquiries and responses received about the Ku Klux Klan in Reconstruction-era North Carolina. In one letter to John S. Henderson, Hamilton stated that his father Daniel Heyward Hamilton (1838-1908) "was a member of the White Brotherhood."
Includes letters from state and national elected officials, business leaders, and colleagues responding to Hamilton's advocacy for a constitutional convention in North Carolina. Some respondents discussed the 1868 constitutional convention, which in their view was forced on the state's former slave holders by "carpet-baggers" and black suffrage, but most respondents saw a convention as unnecessary and possibly dangerous in opening the door for issues such as women's suffrage.
Correspondence regarding personal and domestic matters and also publications, university business, and reference assistance for collections in the Southern Historical Collection. Postcards from friends and messages of condolence following Mary Thompson Hamilton's death in 1959 are included. This series also contains the bulk of the correspondence from Hamilton's sons Roulhac Hamilton and Alfred T. Hamilton to their parents.
Chiefly typewritten scripts of articles, reviews, speeches, and other writings relating to southern history in general and to the history of North Carolina in particular. A short story about a ghost at the University of the South, written under the pseudonym "James Heyward" is included, as are Hamilton's notes for a project on Confederate generals and periodic bibliographies of Hamilton's work.
Diaries, 1919 and 1933-1949, chiefly recount Hamilton's extensive collecting trips around the South and his working and social life in Chapel Hill. The diaries include candid observations on donors and contributors to the Southern Historical Collection, potential and actual; Hamilton's dealings with university administrators and colleagues; impressions of places and people he encountered on his collecting trips around the South; social engagements with family and friends; and leisure activities such as golf and vacations. Also included are some 1919 diaries and typewritten letters to Mary Thompson Hamilton from France, where Hamilton served in the Army Educational Commission. The indices in Boxes 15-19 are unarranged slips of paper in Hamilton's hand that index the handwritten diaries by person and place name.
The scrapbooks consist chiefly of newspaper clippings and other printed materials. Many of the clippings are undated with the newspaper unidentified. Some overlapping of dates and subject matter occur in the different volumes. Scrapbook 1, 1903-1921, contains material on Hamilton's academic and professional career, with information on his student days at the University of the South and at Columbia University, and more on his life at the University of North Carolina. Some material relates to his service with the Education and Recreation Branch of the Army during the First World War.
Scrapbook 2, 1919, records Hamilton's service in France with the Army Educational Commission. Scrapbook 3, circa 1900-1948, contains many types of materials, from birthday cards to ration cards, with historical materials interspersed. Scrapbooks 4-5 contain personal and professional materials, including clippings of book reviews written while Hamilton was editor of the Greensboro News book review page. Scrapbooks 6-9 document the Southern Historical Collection.
The oversized diplomas include Hamilton's undergraduate and graduate degrees as well as honorary degrees from Washington and Lee University and the University of the South.
Oversize Volume SV-01743/2-9
|Extra Oversize Paper Folder XOPF-01743/1|
Office correspondence of Hamilton prior to the formation of the Southern Historical Collection. These files contain the correspondence of Hamilton with potential donors of southern materials; with people inquiring about genealogy, old stamps, and museum items; answers to Hamilton's inquiries about various papers that he collected; discussions about the library's collection; and responses to 1928 newspaper announcements launching a collection of southern historical manuscripts.
Personal and professional correspondence of Hamilton, 1929-1958. The personal correspondence, 1929-1955, contains information concerning his travels, personal affairs, recommendations and references, invitations to civic and social functions, and answers to research inquiries. The professional correspondence, 1929-1958, contains information regarding his travels for the Southern Historical Collection, obtaining papers for the Southern Historical Collection, professional meetings and speaking engagements, references and recommendations, people seeking manuscript publication, and his own publications.
Processed by: Tim Pyatt, March 1997.
Encoded by: Jackie Dean, 24 March 1998
Revised by: Wakefield Harper, April 2010.
Edited by: Tierra Thomas and Laura Hart, July 2019Back to Top