Resources for Local History
Reminiscences of Randolph County, by J.A. Blair. Raleigh: Reece and Elam, 1890. (For almost a hundred years, the only history of the county, written by Asheboro’s only Republican lawyer at that time. Since that time Republican lawyers have bred like rabbits but county histories are still “as rare as hen’s teeth.” It’s interesting if only for the florid Victorian writing style.)
Randolph County, 1779-1979. Charlesanna Fox, et.al., eds. Winston-Salem: Hunter Publishing Company, 1980. (The “Bicentennial Book,” Published by the Randolph County Historical Society and the Randolph Arts Guild. A coffee table book hitting the high spots of local history, without footnotes or citations but with boatloads of lists and unattributed facts.)
Architectural History of Randolph County, North Carolina, by Lowell McKay Whatley, Jr. Published by the City of Asheboro and the County of Randolph, 1985. (Yes, I’m responsible for this one. Publishing costs cut the historical essay in half and kept the histories of each municipality out of the book, but the essay on the history of the county up to 1900 is the only one you’ll find with sources cited and footnotes so you can track down where I found each tidbit of information. That’s important to some people.)
www.deepriverheritage.com is a website built in 1999 during an attempt to create a “heritage corridor” down deep river from Forsyth County all the way to Lee County. It includes an really interesting overview (even if I did write it myself) of the important themes of Piedmont North Carolina history: Nature, Faith, Conflict, Craftsmanship, and Manufacturing.
The Randolph Room, 201 Worth Street, Asheboro, NC 27203 (first floor of the public library). Phone (336) 318-6800. http://www.randolphlibrary.org/randolphroom.htm The public library’s genealogical collection is one of the best in the state, and volunteers have worked to publish local records in the Genealogical Journal for more than 30 years. If it’s family history you’re interested in, this is the place to go, but just as useful is the historical photograph collection, partially available online at http://www.randolphlibrary.org/historicalphotos.htm .
My Randolph County History Blog, just so you’ll have the cite, https://randolphhistory.wordpress.com/ . This page will be posted there for handy reference.