Collection Number: 20254

Collection Title: Miriam Dunham Recordings on the True Light Church, 1972

This collection has access restrictions. For details, please see the restrictions.

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.


Archival processing of the Miriam Dunham Recordings on the True Light Church was made possible through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

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Size 10 items
Abstract Audio interviews, field recordings, and supporting documentation on the congregation and music of the True Light Church located in Rocky River, Cabarrus County, N.C. Miriam Dunham, a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student, created the recordings in February and March of 1972 as part of a term paper for an English 187 course taught by Daniel W. Patterson. Audio recordings include an interview with H. Flake Braswell, of Rocky River, N.C., a white preacher and former leader of the True Light Church, and Russell McLeod, of Rocky River, N.C., a white preacher of the True Light Church, about the True Light Church, its doctrines, and the process of hymn selection. Also includes a field recording of a True Light Church service devoted to addressing conflicts within the congregation, as well as an audio interview with Jeanette Long Scherich, a white resident of Rocky River, N.C., who was raised in the church but is no longer a member. The collection also contains supporting documentation, or tape logs, prepared by former Southern Folklife Collection staff. Little is known about Miriam Dunham and their relation to the subjects in the recordings. Dunham's English 187 term paper, "The True Light Church and its music", can be found in the North Carolina Collection at Wilson Library.
Creator Dunham, Miriam.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
Access to audio materials may require production of listening copies.
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 Miriam Dunham Recordings on the True Light Church #20254, Southern Folklife Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Acquisitions information unknown (Acc. 20200730.1).
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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Miriam Jo Dunham was a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student in Daniel W. Patterson's English 187 course, Folklore in the South, in 1972. As part of the course, Dunham conducted field work at the True Light Church located in Rocky River, Cabarrus County, N.C. The field work resulted in multiple audio recordings and Dunham's English 187 term paper, "The True Light Church and its music." Little is known about Miriam Dunham and their relation to the subjects in the recordings. Dunham's term paper can be found in the North Carolina Collection at Wilson Library.

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Audio interviews, field recordings, and supporting documentation on the congregation and music of the True Light Church located in Rocky River, Cabarrus County, N.C. Miriam Dunham, a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student, created the recordings in February and March of 1972 as part of a term paper for an English 187 course, Folklore in the South, taught by Daniel W. Patterson. Recordings include an interview with H. Flake Braswell, of Rocky River, N.C., a white preacher and former leader of the True Light Church who believed the world would end in 1970, and Russell McLeod, of Rocky River, N.C., a white preacher of the True Light Church, about the True Light Church, its doctrines, and the process of hymn selection. Also includes a field recording of a True Light Church service devoted to addressing conflicts within the congregation, as well as an audio interview with Jeanette Long Scherich, a white resident of Rocky River, N.C., who was raised in the church but is no longer a member. Audio recordings are on 1/4" open reel audio and audiocassette. The collection also contains supporting documentation prepared by former Southern Folklife Collection staff. Documentation consists of tape logs, which include information about the collector and informants and descriptions of content.

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Contents list

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Processing Information

Processed by: Meredith Kite and Anne Wells, July 2020

Encoded by: Anne Wells, July 2020

Since August 2017, we have added ethnic and racial identities for individuals and families represented in collections. To determine identity, we rely on self-identification; other information supplied to the repository by collection creators or sources; public records, press accounts, and secondary sources; and contextual information in the collection materials. Omissions of ethnic and racial identities in finding aids created or updated after August 2017 are an indication of insufficient information to make an educated guess or an individual's preference for identity information to be excluded from description. When we have misidentified, please let us know at wilsonlibrary@unc.edu.

Archival processing of the Miriam Dunham Recordings on the True Light Church was made possible through a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

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