Special Collections' Oral Histories contain a wealth of local history and cultural information about Asheville and Western North Carolina. Two of our Oral History Collections first acquired, the Southern Highlands Research Center Oral History Collection and the Voices of Asheville Project, help to provide unique insight into a broad range of topics including city and county development issues, segregation and integration of schools, private education in the region, the diversity of religion throughout the area, changes in farming and subsistence strategies, and the histories of various families and organizations in western North Carolina.
Special Collections is the repository of over 500 Oral Histories, comprised of at least ten different oral history projects, each ranging from four or five interviews to over two hundred interviews. The Oral History Collections continue to grow, offering a continuing picture of Western North Carolina. In order to share our Oral History collections with a more diverse audience, Special Collections continues to utilize new and innovative technology to disseminate this material to a global community. One of our newest collections, the LGBTQIA+ Archive Oral Histories, uses the ground-breaking technology of the Oral History Metadata Synchronizer, to accomplish this goal.
What are Special Collections?
Ramsey Library's Special Collections contain a variety of primary materials that document the history and culture of Asheville and Western North Carolina. Materials include manuscript collections, photographs, maps, oral histories, company records, church and synagogue records, scrapbooks, and other materials. Oral History Collections held within Special Collections can be found here.
Special Collections also includes rare and small-press books and pamphlets with an emphasis on Asheville and the surrounding region.