Using Our Resources
Searching the On-line Catalog:
- The majority of Appalachian Collection materials are found in the On-line Public Access Catalog (OPAC). For the best results searching the OPAC, use the Advanced Search search option found at http://wncln.wncln.org/search/X. Type your keyword, title, or author as for basic searches. Select "ASU App Coll" for location. There are additional search options that further restrict selections by material type (book, video, microfilm) and date, if desired.
Resources in the Appalachian Collection include:
- The Appalachian Region: This external website contains an explanation of what constitutes the Appalachian Region, as defined by the Appalachian Regional Commission, along with maps of labeled counties by state.
- County Records: Holdings include the microfilm version of original marriage records, land deeds, wills, and other county court records. The collection emphasizes western North Carolina and northeastern Tennessee.
Also available are books with state and county records transcribed primarily by historians and amateur genealogists. Many researchers prefer transcribed records because they are easier to read and are often indexed. Marriage records, wills, and deeds are most commonly transcribed. In addition to county records, many authors transcribe tombstones and church records.
- Family Histories: The Appalchian Collection owns hundreds of books written about specific Appalachian families. They are searchable through the on-line catalog by surname or patrons may browse shelves with the call number CS71.
- Federal Censuses: The federal census is an incredibly rich resource providing the names, ages, birth places, and occupations of entire communities. Holdings include the microfilm version of each available census for each Appalachian county, as defined by the Appalachian Regional Commission, and all of North Carolina. Indexes and transcriptions are available for many censuses and housed separately near the collection's microfilm reader/printers.
Note: The Library subscribes to databases that researchers may use to access all American census records as well as many birth and death certificates, draft cards, social security registration forms, and other primary resources. These are available at Ancestry Library and HeritageQuest. [Note: you must be a registered user or using an ASU computer.]
- Films: Films include documentaries and feature films and are available on DVD and VHS tape.
- Genealogical Journals: The Appalachian Collection subscribes to both local and national genealogical and historical journals. Holdings also include defunct journals.
- Genealogical Research in the Appalachian Collection: A guide to successfully conducting family research with our holdings.
- Handwriting Guide: Reading handwriting can be difficult particularly because previous generations used different symbols than are currently used. For those researching European handwriting styles, Great Britain's National Archives has "Palaeography: Reading Old Handwriting, 1500 - 1800: A Practical Online Tutorial" and Brigham Young University maintains Script Tutorials for Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, and Spanish.
- Heritage Books: These books focus on one county each and include brief family histories as submitted to each county's genealogical associations. An excellent first stop for genealogists, these books also contain county histories, county maps, and family photographs. The Appalachian Collections owns the majority from North Carolina's western Piedmont and mountains and eastern Tennessee. These books reside together on the oversized shelves.
- List of Manuscript Collections: The W.L. Eury Appalachian Collection contains over 400 publicly available manuscript collections with subjects ranging from 19th century land speculation to general store records. Manuscripts are also searchable within the OPAC.
- Maps: The topographical map for each quadrant in the Appalachian Region as well as additional land maps is available. Maps have many uses including assisting researchers determine family members' residences and relationships to churches, businesses, and other families.
- Microformats in the Appalachian Collection: Church ledgers, the Eastern Cherokee band membership roll, World War I Selective Service registration cards are also among the Appalachian Collection's microfilmed primary resources. These include uncataloged items.
- Music: The Appalachian Collection has an extensive music collection originating on LP, audiocassette, and compact disc format. Albums originate from both mainstream music companies and small production companies. Each album is duplicated onto a CD for use. Patrons may listen in the Audio-Visual Viewing/Listening Room during collection hours or check out the materials. For a list of Manuscript Collections containing audio and written music, please see http://collections.library.appstate.edu/collections/sc/subject/music.html.
- Newspapers: The Appalachian Collection owns an extensive number of early and current regional newspapers on microfilm and paper. Holdings emphasize North Carolina. Newspapers provide invaluable announcements of birth, weddings, and deaths as well as summaries of local events, which may have affected ancestors' lives. Indexes are NOT available.
- Newspaper Clippings File Subject Heading Index: Index to subjects of newspaper articles clipped from major papers of the southern Appalachian region, with a concentration on western North Carolina newspapers. The bulk of articles date from the 1980s to present. Clippings are filed by subject in hanging file cabinets. The Appalachian Collection clippings file complements similar clippings and vertical files maintained by the University Archives and the Stock Car Racing Collection.
- Novels and Poetry: Poetry and fictive works set in the Appalachian region or written by Appalachian natives are housed within the Appalachian Collection.
- Related Sites: This list includes websites related to Appalachian Studies and Appalachian regional topics.
- Research Aids: These research aids include student-produced pathfinders and bibliographies.
- Special Collections Subject Guides: Subject guides assist researchers with locating relevant manuscript collections and pathfinders for particular topics of interest.
- Tune file: This uncataloged resource indexes each song available within the Appalachian Collection's LP, audiocassette, and compact disc collection which was obtained before 2008. The tune file is accessible only in-house. The on-line catalog records of recordings obtained after 2008 include the title of each song.