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Collection Number: 70123

Collection Title: Barbara Barnes Sims Collection, 1957-1960

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


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Size 1.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 800 items)
Abstract Contains the personal collection of Barbara Barnes Sims, a white woman, from the years she worked in public relations at Sun Records (1957-1960), including correspondence, promotional photographs, and other publicity materials. These materials offer the perspective of a young woman working in the recording industry for a rising independent record label that would transform popular music and introduce artists including Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, and Elvis Presley, among others. Sims later became a professor at Louisiana State University (LSU), where she taught English for 36 years and authored the book The Next Elvis: Searching for Stardom at Sun Records (LSU Press, 2014).
Creator Sims, Barbara Barnes, 1933-
Curatorial Unit University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Folklife Collection.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
This collection is not available for immediate or same day access. Please contact Research and Instructional Service staff at wilsonlibrary@unc.edu to discuss options for consulting this collection.
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 Barbara Barnes Sims Collection #70123, Southern Folklife Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Barbara Barnes Sims in March 2022 (Acc. 20220503.2).
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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Barbara Barnes Sims (b. 1933), a white woman, worked in promotion and publicity for Sam Phillips's Memphis-based record label Sun Records from 1957 to 1960. Sims then became a professor at Louisiana State University (LSU), where she taught English for 36 years and authored the book The Next Elvis: Searching for Stardom at Sun Records (LSU Press, 2014).

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Contains the personal collection of Barbara Barnes Sims from the years she worked at Sun Records, including correspondence, promotional photographs, and other publicity materials. These materials offer the perspective of a young woman working in the recording industry for a rising independent record label that would transform popular music and introduce artists including Carl Perkins, Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, and Elvis Presley, among others. Sims worked in public relations for Sun Records when the scandal of Jerry Lee Lewis's marriage to his 13-year-old cousin Myra Gale Brown broke during Brown's 1958 tour in the United Kingdom.

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Processing Information

This summary description was created in May 2022 to provide information about materials in Wilson Special Collections Library.

Encoded by: Dawne Howard Lucas, May 2022

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.

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