Collection Number: 05412

Collection Title: Ragland Family Papers, 1894-1959

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.


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Size 6.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 1550 items)
Abstract The Ragland Family Papers document a white, multi-generational family of Salisbury, N.C., and Raleigh, N.C., from the 1890s through the 1950s. It consists primarily of correspondence between W. H. Trent Ragland Sr. and Alice McKenzie Ragland and between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and his parents and later with Anna Wood Ragland. W. H. Trent Ragland Sr.'s letters describe his experience serving in the United States Army in World War I. W. Trent Ragland Jr.'s letters describe his experiences in summer camp, boarding school, college, and while serving in the United States Navy during World War II, and his feelings and plans for the future with Anna Wood Ragland. Also included are letters from various correspondents concerning family matters and social news.
Creator Ragland (Family : Ragland, William Trent, 1894-1959)
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
No restrictions. Open for research.
Restrictions to Use
No usage restrictions.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Ragland Family Papers #05412, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received by William Trent Ragland, Jr., in December 2008 (Acc. 101054) and Trent Ragland, III., March 2018 (Acc. 103323).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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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.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. (1894-1959), son of W.H. and Madge Urquart Ragland, was born in Little Rock, Ark. His parents moved to Salisbury, N.C., when he and his brother, Edmond Urquart Ragland, were young. He graduated from the University of North Carolina and later served in the United States Army during World War I. In 1919, W.H. Trent Ragland married Alice Mckenzie of Salisbury, N.C. He and his brother formed the Superior Stone Company in 1939. W. Trent Ragland Jr. was born in Salisbury, N.C., on 12 August 1920, and he was raised in Raleigh, N.C. He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1941. W. Trent Ragland Jr. joined the United States Navy and served during World War II. He later graduated from the Post Graduate School at the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. He married Anna Wood of Edenton, N.C., in July 1944, and they had three children: Anna, Alice McKenzie, and Trent Ragland III. In 1954, W. Trent Ragland Jr. became president of Superior Stone Company.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The collection documents the Raglands, a white, multi-generational family of Salisbury, N.C., and Raleigh, N.C. It consists primarily of correspondence between W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. and Alice McKenzie Ragland and between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and his parents and later with Anna Wood Ragland. W.H. Trent Ragland Sr.'s letters describe his experience serving in the United States Army in World War I. W. Trent Ragland Jr.'s letters describe his experiences in summer camp, boarding school, college, and while serving in the United States Navy during World War II, and his feelings and plans for the future with Anna Wood Ragland. Also included are letters from various correspondents concerning family matters and social news.

Other materials include three small photographs from the 1930s of Ragland family members, picture post cards, secondary school materials, dance cards, postmarked stamps, and a printed copy of testimony about James C. Johnston's 1863 will and his land holdings including Hayes Plantation.

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Contents list

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit).

About 350 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

The original deposit contains correspondence, 1894-1959, relating to the Ragland family of Salisbury, N.C., and Raleigh, N.C. It consists primarily of correspondence between W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. and Alice McKenzie Ragland and between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland. W.H. Trent Ragland Sr.'s letters describe his experience serving in the United States Army in World War I. W. Trent Ragland Jr.'s letters describe his experience serving in the United States Navy during World War II. Also included are letters from various correspondents concerning family matters and social news.

Folder 1

Letters to W.H. Trent Ragland Sr., Alice McKenzie Ragland, and their parents, 1894-1911 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 1

Folder 2

Letters from W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. to his parents and Alice McKenzie Ragland, 1913-1916 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 2

Folder 3

Letters from W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. to his parents and Alice McKenzie Ragland, 1917 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 3

Folder 4

Letters from W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. to his parents and Alice McKenzie Ragland, 1918 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 4

Folder 5

Letters from W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. to his family, 1919 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 5

Folder 6

Letters to W.H. Trent Ragland Sr. and Alice McKenzie Ragland from family and friends, 1920-1926 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 6

Folder 7

Correspondence among W.H. Trent Ragland Sr., Alice McKenzie Ragland, and family and friends, 1931-1942 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 7

Folder 8

Correspondence among W.H. Trent Ragland Sr., Alice Mckenzie Ragland, and family and friends, undated #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 8

Folder 9

Letters to W. Trent Ragland Jr. from Anna Wood Ragland, 1941-March 1944 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 9

Folder 10

Correspondence between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland, 2 April-16 April 1944 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 10

Folder 11

Correspondence between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland, 20 April-30 April 1944 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 11

Folder 12

Correspondence between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland, 1 May-12 May 1944 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 12

Folder 13

Correspondence between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland, 13 May-31 May 1944 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 13

Folder 14

Correspondence between W. Trent Ragland Jr. and Anna Wood Ragland, June 1944 and 1947-1959 #05412, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1894-1959 (Original Deposit)." Folder 14

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018).

About 1200 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Acquisitions Information: Accession 103323.

Letters sent and received in the 1930s and 1940s by W. Trent Ragland, Jr. (Trent) document a young white man's experience in summer camp, boarding school, college, and the military. Ragland wrote his parents, family, and friends from Camp Sapphire in Brevard, N.C., the World's Fair in Chicago (1933), Woodberry Forest School in Virginia (circa 1935-1937), Virginia Military Institute (circa 1938-1939), University of North Carolina (1940-1941), naval bases in San Francisco and Pearl Harbor, Hawaii (1942-1945) where he served on Admiral Chester Nimitz's staff, and the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md., where he did post graduate work. He received letters from family members, particularly his mother Alice McKenzie Ragland, friends, early love interests, and his wife Anna Wood Ragland whom he married in 1944. Trent's correspondents wrote from Raleigh, N.C., Salisbury, N.C., Edenton, N.C., Little Rock, Ark., military bases, and other locations. Correspondence with his mother concerns extracurricular activities, friends, sports, and travel. His letters to Anna describe his feelings and plans for their future.

Additional correspondence includes letters Anna Wood Ragland received and wrote as a child from Camp Alleghany in Greenbrier County, W.V., as a young adult at St. Mary's School in Raleigh, N.C., and as an adult. Correspondents were her parents, friends, husband Trent, and in-laws, particularly Alice McKenzie Ragland. Anna wrote several letters in the early 1940s to Trent and Alice from the Wood family home on Hayes Plantation in Edenton, N.C.

Correspondence dated 1897 through the 1920s is scattered and composed chiefly of letters received and sent by Alice McKenzie Ragland and by W.H. Trent Ragland, Sr., to family members, including a copy of a 1918 letter he wrote to his parents during his military service in the First World War.

Other materials include three small photographs from the 1930s of Ragland family members, picture post cards, secondary school materials, dance cards, postmarked stamps, and a printed copy of testimony about James C. Johnston's 1863 will and his land holdings including Hayes Plantation.

Box 3

Letters, 1897-1933 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 3

Box 4

Letters, 1934-April 1936 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 4

Box 5

Letters, May 1936-October 1936 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 5

Box 6

Letters, November 1936-June 1937 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 6

Box 7

Letters, September 1937-September 1939 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 7

Box 8

Letters, October 1939-February 1940 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 8

Box 9

Letters, March 1940-August 1942 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 9

Box 10

Letters, September 1942-April 1943 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 10

Box 11

Letters, May 1943-December 1943 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 11

Box 12

Letters, January 1944-August 1945 #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 12

Box 13

Letters, September 1945-1959 and undated #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 13

Other papers, 1911-1944 and undated #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." Box 13

Image Folder PF-05412/1

W. Trent Ragland, Jr., and others, 1933 and undated #05412, Series: "1A. Correspondence and Other Materials, 1897-1959 (Addition of March 2018)." PF-05412/1

3 images.

Black-and-white prints.

One image may depict cadets at the Virginia Military Institute, circa 1938. One image depicts Trent Ragland at the 1933 World's Fair in Chicago, and the other depicts W. Trent Ragland, Sr., Alice Ragland, and their two children Billy and Trent, circa 1930.

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Processing Information

Processed by: Jennifer Thompson, February 2009

Encoded by: Jennifer Thompson, February 2009

Updated by: Nancy Kaiser, Laura Hart, and Amy Morgan, July 2018

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