D. H. Ramsey Library Special Collections and University Archives

Asheville Area Photographic Collection

 Sponsored by the Southern Highlands Research Center, 1976-1978

Summary Information

UNC Asheville Special Collections and University Archives
Asheville Area Photographic Collection
Date [inclusive]
4.0 Linear feet 12 boxes of prints, negatives, and contact sheets.
Physical Description
Contains negatives, contact sheets, and photographic prints of original photographs as well as digital copies on CDs.
The Asheville Area Photographic Collection contains materials gathered during a 1976 survey of the city of Asheville, NC, that focuses on areas targeted for demolition and change, people at work, occupations that are unusual and disappearing, area homes, streetscapes, and portraits of many individuals included in the Southern Highlands Research Center Oral History project conducted during the same time frame.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of photo], Asheville Area Photographic Collection, D.H. Ramsey Library, Special Collections, University of North Carolina at Asheville 28804


In January 1976, the Southern Highlands Research Center proposed a photographic survey of Asheville to be completed by a photographer hired with CETA money. Charles McLarty worked in this capacity from the Spring of 1976 to the Spring of 1977 and was then replaced by Jefferson Davis, another CETA sponsored-photographer who worked for the Center until May 1978.

The original design for the project included a photographic survey of Asheville in 1976, especially those areas destined for demolition or change. Also included was a record of Asheville's homes and street scapes which in some way would reflect the mood and feeling of the city in the mid-1970's. The photographers were also able to photograph individuals included in the Center's oral history collection and to shoot those areas mentioned in various studies housed in the Center.

As the project got under way, the photographers also suggested other themes, the most represented of which in this collection was a review of people at work, especially in occupations that were unusual or disappearing. Thus, one set of photographs depicts sorghum manufacture.

In the Spring of 1978 the State Department of Archives dispatched a photographic team to Asheville to record the downtown area in preparation for a historical properties inventory. Because this project obviated the need for continuation of the project, all field work was stopped and emphasis was placed instead on copy work of existing collections acquired by the Center.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

UNC Asheville Special Collections and University Archives

Ramsey Library, CPO # 1500
One University Heights
Asheville, North Carolina, 28804-8504

Copyright and usage

Any display, publication, or public use must credit the Southern Highlands Research Center and D.H. Ramsey Library, Special Collections, University of North Carolina at Asheville. Copyright is retained by the creators of certain items in the collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law. Please refer to the Special Collections' website for more information.

Processing Note

Processed by Special Collections staff, 1978 and 2001.

Digital Access to Photographs

Digital copies can be viewed online in the Asheville Area Photographic Collection, part of the Western North Carolina Heritage website.

Related Materials

Related Materials in Special Collections

Related collections at UNC Asheville include the Southern Highlands Research Center Oral History Collection, and the E. M. Ball Photographic Collection.

Jeff Davis Photographic Collection, D.H. Ramsey Library Special Collections.


McLarty, Charles and Davis, Jefferson - Photographers