Blanche Hardee Rives Papers

Manuscript Collection #335
Rives, Blanche Hardee, 1887-1973
Physical description
1.795 Cubic Feet, ca. 1200 items, consisting of correspondence, minutes, reports, rosters, speeches, pamphlets, publications, yearbooks, programs, clippings, photographs, farm ledgers, notebooks, bulletins, brochures, date book, deposition, will, contracts, inventory, and poetry.
Preferred Citation
Blanche Hardee Rives Papers (#335), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions except for material found in unprocessed addition #9. Access to the correspondence in addition #9 is restricted until 9/19/2031.

Papers (1905-1999, undated) consisting of correspondence, minutes, reports, rosters, speeches, pamphlets, publications, yearbook, programs, clippings, photographs, farm ledgers, notebooks, bulletins, brochures, date book, deposition, will, contracts, inventory and poetry related to teacher Blanche Hardee Rives (1887-1973)and her family in Enfield, Halifax County, North Carolina. Also documented are her involvement in the Methodist Protestant (United Methodist Church after 1939),the Hardrawee Home Demonstration Club, the Halifax Co. Home Demonstration Club, Order of the Eastern Star, Halifax County Historical Association, Northeastern North Carolina Branch of the English-Speaking Union, Frank M. Parker Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, and Littleton College Memorial Association.

Biographical/historical information

Blanche Hardee Rives (1887-1973), daughter of James Washington Hardee and Anna O. Lucas, resided in Enfield, Halifax County, N.C. She attended the Littleton Female College (1906-1908), after which she taught in the Hardee School, a small school near the plantation of her father. She married Ralph Cooper Rives in 1942. Throughout her life she participated in Methodist Protestant (United Methodist Church after 1939) activities. Other organizations in which she was active were the Hardrawee Home Demonstration Club, the Halifax Co. Home Demonstration Club, Order of the Eastern Star, Halifax County Historical Association, Northeastern North Carolina Branch of the English-Speaking Union, Frank M. Parker Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, and Littleton College Memorial Association. Her son, Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives, is professor of English at East Carolina University. For more biographical detail, see Blanche Hardee Rives obituary newspaper clippings in this collection.

Scope and arrangement

Topics relating to the Methodist Protestant Church (United Methodist after 1939) bulk large in these papers. A letter dated June, 1956, comments on the current-day Methodist Church. Arminius Gray Dixon, a prominent Methodist Protestant minister, comments on his ministerial career in Halifax County, especially Whitakers' Chapel Methodist Protestant Church, the preservation of which he urges; the Methodist Union and the beginnings of the Methodist Protestant Church; the impact of modern technological advances on the Church; Methodist Church doctrine and government; and the publication of a pamphlet chronicling his life (1960). Other topics discussed by Dixon include Rocky Mount, N.C., in 1901 and unsuccessful attempts to establish a Methodist Protestant ministry there, his activities as president of the Methodist Protestant Conference, conditions in early Methodist churches, and his struggle to obtain an education (1960). A later letter (Jan., 1961) gives impressions of his career.

Other letters concerning Methodism comment on semantic difficulties in the names of the two divisions of the Methodist church: Methodist Protestant and Methodist Episcopal (Sept., 1960); life of Methodist Protestant minister, J.E. Pritchard (April, 1966); the unwillingness of former Methodist Episcopalians to award former Methodist Protestants their rightful credit for accomplishments; and the existence of petty prejudice among members (Jan., 1974).

Letters (1960, 1970) from Dr. Llewellyn J. Coppedge comment on events leading to his appointment as a missionary to the Belgian Congo at the turn of the century, living conditions and health risks in the Congo, activities of Reverend H. Morrison, the death of Morrison's wife by fever, and attempts by Coppedge to save her. Other information concerns the activities of missionary Motte Martin and his wife; later events in the life of Coppedge; the relative ease of conditions for modern missionaries; and suicides among current-day Congo missionaries (1970). Other letters by Coppedge comment on events in his life and career as a physician; describe Montreat, N.C., in the spring and fall; provide impressions of Mexico where he served as a physician (Feb., 1960); comment on Littleton Female College; and mention problems and health conditions relating to the hard water of the Carlsbad, New Mexico, region (March, 1960).

Topics relating to farm life include discussion of fall shopping in Richmond, Virginia (1939) and farm routine (1940, 1946). Letters mention fear of infantile paralysis in N.C. (1935) and comment on the "wonderful new cure" for pneumonia (1940). Travel-related topics include comments on the purchase of an automobile and taking trips with it (Oct., 1940). Writer Catherine Marshall comments on travel in the South and the warmth of Southerners (May, 1959) and a North Carolina native comments on Paris, France (July, 1968).

Early letters in the Rives Papers discuss Christmas activities, dances, and "rushing" (dating) (1905). A Halifax County soldier comments on his role in World War I (Nov., 1918). Other letters mention a chautauqua and Charles Ross Taggart passing through N.C. (June, 1923); a church (MP) convention in Weaverville, N.C. (Aug., 1923); "movies" worth watching (Jan., 1940); a shortage of meat; hard times in Richmond, Virginia; Christmas packages to soldiers (Dec., 1942); and a pageant produced for the Halifax County Bicentennial (Jan., 1958).

Recent letters comment on unwarranted criticism of President Richard Nixon (1973) and the election of the first woman city council member in Rocky Mount (1973). Other letters comment on death (1942, 1961), trials of the elderly (1967), and a nursing center (1968). Several letters contain amateur verse (Feb., 1942; May, 1966; 1968), titles of which include "The Missionary," and "The Silent Courtship."

North Carolina Home Demonstration Clubs correspondence consists of announcements and policy letters concerning projects, activities, and issues. A secretary's notebook for the Halifax County Home Demonstration Club (1937-1940, 1943) mentions county projects, district meetings and food for the county jail. Reports pertain to the community-wide testing of cows for tuberculosis and a project for the erection of "sanitary toilets" and for a safer water supply (1937). Speeches (1938) pertain to Home Demonstration achievements, philosophy toward home demonstration, and a history of home demonstration work in Halifax County (1969). Other material includes publications, yearbooks, programs, clippings, and miscellaneous (1938-1975).

Frank M. Parker Chapter of the United Daughters of the Confederacy materials include correspondence, programs, clippings and miscellaneous (1947-1972) reflecting the membership of Blanche Rives.

Material pertaining to the Littleton Female College includes a photograph of the faculty (ca. 1906-1908), a catalogue (1909), and a class notebook (ca. 1906-1907). The notebook also lists names and ages of students in the Hardee School (later consolidated into the Hardrawee School), a small school near her father's plantation at which she taught for a short time. A related file consists of material relating to Mrs. Rives' membership in the Littleton College Memorial Association (1963-1974). Of particular interest is a pamphlet, A Brief History of Littleton College (1968).

A reprint and founder's day pamphlet pertain to Longwood College in Virginia (1971).

Announcements, president's letters, minutes, and budgetary material reflect Blanche Rives' membership in the Halifax County Historical Association (1967-1972).

Material pertaining to the Methodist Protestant-United Methodist churches consists of a Woman's Auxiliary breakdown of the allocation of Methodist Protestant funds (1934), a published journal of the one hundred eleventh annual conference of the Methodist Protestant Church (the last session before Episcopal and Protestant unification (1938), programs of services at Enfield and Eden Methodist churches (1970, 1971), and typescript histories of Weldon and Eden Methodist churches (undated). Other material includes an issue of the Methodist Protestant Herald (1935); a pamphlet, A History of the Central Methodist Church of Asheboro, N.C. (1951), by J.E. Pritchard; material pertaining to services and historical designation of Whitaker's Chapel (1965-1970, undated); and founders' day material of North Carolina Wesleyan College (1966-1967).

Eden Methodist Protestant Church Ladies Aid Soc, material includes a speech entitled "What an Auxiliary or Missionary Society Should Mean to a Rural Church," (ca. 1930); roll and minute book (1919-1920); and names of members of the Society contributing to the Japanese Relief Fund (1923-1924). (This appears in the secretary's book of the Halifax Council Home Demonstration Clubs file.)

Pamphlets concern the Enfield Order of the Eastern Star (1952-1957). Clippings relate to Jesse Eli Pritchard (1932-1962), Dr. A.G. Dixon (1960-1962), Enfield Academy (1965), and North Carolina Wesleyan College (1968).

Miscellaneous materials include farm ledgers (1949-1957), poetry, and legal papers.

Administrative information
Custodial History

April 27, 1977, Papers (1906-1973) of Enfield, N.C. social leader, pertaining to Home Demonstration work, Littleton College, the Methodist Church, the U.D.C., and other activities. Donor: Ralph Hardee Rives, Greenville, N.C.

May 30, 1980, (unprocessed addition 1), 35 items; correspondence, clippings, and miscellaneous. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

April 7, 1982, (unprocessed addition 2), 20 items; Correspondence, programs, and miscellaneous materials. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives

December 30, 1983, (unprocessed addition 3), 50 items; Correspondence, reports, clippings, programs and home demonstration clubs publications. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives

July 2, 1984, (unprocessed addition 4), 7 items; Note book, ledger, and miscellaneous items. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives

April 30, 1986, (unprocessed addition 5), 120 items; Clippings and miscellany. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives

December 29, 1987, (unprocessed addition 6), ca. 100 items; Correspondence, clippings, programs, and miscellaneous materials. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

August 14, 2006, (unprocessed addition 7), 1 item, 0.001 cubic feet; Photographic print (ca. 1970) and brief note from her friend Ruth Townsend Ficklen taken in Jerusalem, Israel; print has a view of the Mount of Olives in the background; print is glued to a folding postcard with pressed Israeli flowers on inside of front cover. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

December 31, 1987, (unprocessed addition 8), 16 items, 0.088 cubic feet; Collection (ca. 1882-1985, n.d.) of manuscript and printed materials, including a guest register for a Home Demonstration Club tea party, in April 1942; Valentines, Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas cards, ca. 1900-1944; Halifax County Historical Society architectural tour brochure, 1985; pamphlets and books. See preliminary inventory attached. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

September 19, 2006, (unprocessed addition 9), 550 items, 1.350 cubic feet; Collection (ca. 1882-1985, n.d.) of manuscripts, photographs, and printed materials, and correspondence, relating primarily to her nephew and step-son, Ralph Hardee Rives, 1945-1962; photographs of various family members; and miscellaneous materials related to friends of Mrs. Rives. See preliminary inventory attached. RESTRICTION: no use of correspondence until 9/19/2031. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

August 8, 2012, (unprocessed addition 10), 0.20 cubic feet; Photographs of relatives and friends of Blanche Hardee Rives, photocopies of clippings (1922, 1950s) related to Daniel Woodberry Hardee and a photocopy of a certificate of gift (1999) for a framed 1st Day Cover of John Wesley donated to the United Methodist Church, Southeast Jurisdiction, in memory of sisters Blanche Hardee Rives and Lossie Hardee Rives. Donor: Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives.

Source of acquisition

Gift of Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives

Processing information

Processed by D. Lawson, June 1979

Encoded by Apex Data Services

Copyright notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Key terms
Personal Names
Coppedge, Llewellyn J.--Correspondence
Dixon, Arminius Gray--Correspondence
Rives, Blanche Hardee, 1887-1973
Corporate Names
Halifax County Historical Association (Halifax County, N.C.)
Littleton Female College
Methodist Protestant Church (U.S. : 1830-1939)
North Carolina Wesleyan College
United Daughters of the Confederacy. Frank M. Parker Chapter
United Methodist Church (U.S.)
Farm life--North Carolina--Halifax County
Methodists--Missions--Congo (Democratic Republic)
Private schools--North Carolina--Halifax County
Women--North Carolina--Enfield--Societies and clubs
Congo (Democratic Republic)--Description and travel
Halifax County (N.C.)--Church history
Halifax County (N.C.)--Social life and customs--20th century

Container list
Box 1 Folder a Correspondence 1905-1940
Box 1 Folder b Correspondence 1941-1960
Box 1 Folder c Correspondence 1961-1969
Box 1 Folder d Correspondence 1970-1974, undated
Box 1 Folder e Home Demonstration Clubs: Correspondence 1952-1971
Box 1 Folder f Home Demonstration Clubs: Minutes, Reports, Rosters 1937-1970
Box 1 Folder g Home Demonstration Clubs: Speeches 1938-1969, undated
Box 1 Folder h Home Demonstration Clubs: Publications 1938-1954, undated
Box 1 Folder i Home Demonstration Clubs: Yearbooks 1838-1968
Box 2 Folder a Home Demonstration Clubs: Programs 1937-1965, undated
Box 2 Folder b Home Demonstration Clubs: Newspaper Clippings 1934-1975, undated
Box 2 Folder c Home Demonstration Clubs: Miscellaneous 1962-1970, undated
Box 2 Folder d United Daughters of the Confederacy: Correspondence 1952-1966, undated
Box 2 Folder e United Daughters of the Confederacy: Programs 1947-1972, undated
Box 2 Folder f United Daughters of the Confederacy: Clippings 1954-1973, undated
Box 2 Folder g United Daughters of the Confederacy: Miscellaneous 1952-1971, undated
Box 2 Folder h Littleton Female College: Material [ca. 1904-1906], 1909
Box 2 Folder i Littleton College Memorial Association: Material 1963-1974, undated
Box 3 Folder a Longwood College Pamphlets, Clippings 1971
Box 3 Folder b Halifax County Historical Association Records 1967-1972, undated
Box 3 Folder c Methodist Church Material 1934-1974, undated
Box 3 Folder d Ladies Aid Society Roll and Minutes 1919-1920, ca. 1930
Box 3 Folder e Legal Papers 1921-1973
Box 3 Folder f Financial Papers 1956-1973, undated
Box 3 Folder g Speeches 1912, 1942, 1968
Box 3 Folder h Pamphlets 1952-1958
Box 3 Folder i Clippings 1932-1974, undated
Box 3 Folder j Photographs ca. 1906, undated
Box 3 Folder k Rives Farm Records 1950-1952, 1955-1958
Box 3 Folder l Miscellaneous 1952-1974, undated
Box 4 Folder b Correspondence, Clippings, Photographic Prints, Printed Materials, and Miscellaneous Items 1930-1966, undated
Box 4 Folder c Correspondence, Clippings, Photographic Prints, Printed Materials, Recipes, and Miscellaneous Items 1942-1983, undated
Box 4 Folder d Notebook, Ledger, and Miscellaneous Materials 1906-1908, 1927-1929
Box 5 Folder a Correspondence, Clippings, Photographic Prints, Printed Materials, Architectural Drawings, and Miscellaneous Items 1930-1966, undated
Box 5 Folder b Correspondence, Clippings, Photographic Prints, Printed Materials, Architectural Drawings, and Miscellaneous Items 1930-1966, undated
Box 5 Folder c Correspondence, Clippings, and Miscellaneous Items 1947-1986, undated
Box 6 Folder a Correspondence, Clippings, Programs, and Miscellaneous
Box 6 Folder b Photographs, Clippings, Correspondence, Minutes, Membership Roll Concerning Blanche Rives, Halifax County Historical Association, and Littleton College
Box 6 Folder c Photographs, Minutes, Correspondence Concerning Littleton College, 1907 Jamestown Exposition Booklet, 1937 "Lost Colony" Program
Box 6 Folder d Photographic Print (ca. 1970) and a Note from her Friend Ruth Townsend Ficklen
Box 7 Folder a Guest Registe, April 1942
Box 7 Folder c Halifax County: A Historical Perspective in Architecture (1985) brochure published by the Halifax County Historical Society
Box 7 Folder d North Carolina Laws Made Plain: Laws and Legal Forms Prepared for the Use of Farmers, Mechanics and Business Men
Box 7 Folder e The Polite Letter Writer or How to Correspond on all Subjects in a Refined and Elegant Style
Box 7 Folder f Mount Vernon, Virginia: An Illustrated Handbook of Mount Vernon, the Home of Washington
Box 7 Folder g Funny Things the Doughboys Tell: Real American humor -- the kind which delights the doughboy, in fact all Yanks
Box 7 Folder h Pearls from Tennyson
Box 7 Folder i Methodist Protestant Handbook: Handbook of the Methodist Protestant Church: Sketching its History, Form of Government, Doctrines, Institutions, Work, Support, Extent and Resources
Box 8 Folder a Correspondence 1945
Box 8 Folder b Correspondence 1948
Box 8 Folder c Correspondence 1949
Box 8 Folder d Correspondence 1950-1951
Box 8 Folder e Correspondence 1952
Box 8 Folder f Correspondence 1953
Box 8 Folder g Correspondence 1954
Box 9 Folder a Correspondence 1955
Box 9 Folder b Correspondence 1956
Box 9 Folder c Correspondence 1957
Box 9 Folder d Correspondence 1958
Box 9 Folder e Correspondence 1959
Box 10 Folder a Correspondence 1960
Box 10 Folder b Correspondence 1961-1962
Box 10 Folder c Correspondence undated
Box 10 Folder d Correspondence and Photographs 1900-1973
Box 10 Folder e Miscellaneous 1918-1992, undated
Folder os1 Home Demonstrations Clubs Newspapers 1939; Certificates 1924-1925, 1934; Home Demonstration Club Photograph at Washington, D. C. 1955; Photograph of North Carolina Funeral Directors Association 1922;
Folder os2 Miscellaneous items (1920-1955, undated) to include newspaper clippings, and one photograph of Blanche Hardee Rives