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.
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.
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.
Gift of Dr. Ralph Hardee Rives
Processed by D. Lawson, June 1979
Encoded by Apex Data Services
Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.