(Post written by intern Holly Croft.)
The State Archives of North Carolina is the ultimate custodian for the high school annual reports created by each high school and reported to the Department of Public Instruction each year. The Department of Public Instruction retains the records for a set period and then transfers them to the Archive. The annual reports always include a list of graduates but over the years they have also captured a variety of information on school organization sometimes including teachers, courses taught and school equipment. The Archives has annual reports dating back to 1918, almost one hundred years, including the reports prepared by Negro schools from 1922 to 1950.
In late 2014, the Archive received the last group of records that would come in paper format from 1999-2004. Starting in the 2004-2005 school year, the Department of Public Instruction began requiring schools to submit graduation lists electronically so all future records will come to the Archive as electronic files.
Last year, as a brand new archivist-in-training, I was thrilled to be trusted with arranging these files and ensuring their proper storage. These records are now available for public use in the Search Room classified as MARS 104.342, MARS 104.77 and MARS 1.20. They are useful in providing proof of graduation and are also a valuable historical resource.