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Archival Resources

About the Archival Resources

There are documents related to the history and reception of the UNC Confederate Monument throughout the University Archives and other collections in Wilson Library. For early documents related to the planning, fundraising, and dedication of the monument, we have attempted to list every document in the Archives. For later years, we have listed only those collections where there are significant numbers of materials on the monument. Also included in this list are actively growing collections reflecting the University Archives’ efforts to document current discussions and protests of the Confederate Monument. This list should be used as a starting point; researchers are encouraged to explore further in the collections in Wilson Library. 

Most of the sources listed here have been digitized and are available online, but some can only be accessed in Wilson Library. To learn more about requesting and using materials in Wilson Library, consult Use Wilson Library. 


University of North Carolina Papers (University Archives #40005)

Folder Date Description Links
844 6/9/1908 Venable to Annie Hill Kenan. Kenan, writing that the Trustees like the idea of a memorial and think a memorial gateway to the campus would be appropriate Page 1
864 3/19/1909  Venable to Kenan, following up and describing the suggested gateway Page 1
  3/20/1909 Kenan to Venable, continued discussion of the gateway suggestion Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6
865 3/24/1909 Venable to Kenan writing that her idea for the memorial is probably too expensive Page 1Page 2
  3/25/1909 Kenan to Venable, response relating to memorial gateway Page 1Page 2
867 4/20/1909 Offer of designs and prices for the monument from Monumental Bronze Co. to Kenan Page 1Page 2
876 Sept. 1909 Venable to Kenan, Julian S. Carr wants to meet with the U.D.C. about donating to the monument Page 1
877 9/24/1909 Venable to Kenan, Venable now believes a statue is a more fitting memorial than a gateway. He is confident that the U.D.C., University alumni, and Trustees can raise money toward the estimated $5,000 or $6,000 cost. He is hopeful for that the monument can unveiled during the 1911 commencement (in 1911, UNC awarded degrees to Confederate veterans who left school to go to war). Page 1
  9/25/1909 Kenan to Venable Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4 Page 5
  9/29/1909 National Marble Mills to Kenan, description of the gateway/statue combination, proposal, describes bronze statue and panels as expensive and subject to discoloration and staining Page 1Page 2
878 10/4/1909 Kenan to Venable Page 1Page 2
  10/4/1909 National Marble Mills to Kenan, details replacing the N.C. coat of arms on the monument with the N.C. flag Page 1
  10/5/1909 Kenan to Venable Page 1Page 2Page 3
  10/5/1909 Venable to Kenan; she had invited him to speak to the U.D.C. in Wilmington about the monument, he accepts the invitation and schedules the meeting for October 15th Page 1
  10/6/1909 Leola Sprunt to Venable, inviting him to her house while he is in Wilmington, supporting the monument idea Page 1Page 2
879 10/20/1909 Venable to Kenan, asking her to send a photo of a monument in Wilmington they had seen and admired (probably this one). Page 1Page 2
 880 10/21/1909 Kenan to Venable, she is resigning her chairmanship, will come to Chapel Hill to talk with him Page 1Page 2
  10/25/1909 Kenan to Venable, acknowledging she received copy of his speech from Wilmington Page 1 Page 2
885 1/7/1910 Kenan to Venable Page 1Page 2Page 3
886 1/31/1910 John Wilson to Kenan, asking for feedback on a model he sent and if any changes need to be made. He offers to send designs for the pedestal. Page 1Page 2
888 2/19/1910 National Marble and Granite Company to Kenan making offer, enclosed postcard and envelope Page 1
889 2/21/1910 Kenan to Venable, Wilson's design vs. that of the National Marble Mills in Marietta, GA Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4 Page 5
  2/23/1910 National Marble and Granite to Venable, anxious for him to make an order, mentions designs for both a memorial archway and a Confederate monument Page 1
  2/25/1910 John Wilson to Venable, asking whether the model and photo sent to him has been received, interested in the portraying the subject of a youthful soldier Page 1
  2/25/1910 Venable to National Marble, acknowledges receipt of designs and says committee will meet in the spring Page 1
  2/25/1910 Venable to Kenan, Venable very much in favor of Wilson's design if affordable, says he wants the monument to appear "not as a monument to the dead but to a noble ideal and as marking the heroic period of the University's history." Page 1
  2/28/1910 National Marble to Venable, designs are to be kept confidential and not to be shown to other dealers Page 1
890 circa 1910 "Proposal for a Monument to be erected for the Students of the University of N.C." From John Wilson, lists price as $10,000 with a bronze or granite panel in relief on the pedestal and $8,500 without the panel Page 1
  3/1/1910 Venable to John Wilson, he prefers Wilson design but fears the committee will choose a cheaper alternative, asks about price reduction Page 1
  3/2/1910 Venable to National Granite and Marble Page 1
  3/4/1910 Wilson to Venable regarding the estimate for the monument Page 1
  3/7/1910 Venable to Wilson, Bettie Jackson London replaces Kenan as committee chairman, the matter of the monument will be new business among the new membership of the committee Page 1
  3/7/1910 National Marble to Venable, continuing offers of lower priced designs Page 1
892 3/28/1910 Wilson to Venable, Wilson, anxious for a decision, is interested in starting the Soldier Boy project and is willing to meet halfway on the Committees proposed price. Page 1
894 4/18/1910 Venable to London asking when the next committee meeting will be and how many members will be attending Page 1
  4/23/1910 Venable to Wilson, committee is favorably inclined to Wilson's design but are staggered at the cost. Veneble asks what the lowest price would be and expresses desire for a bigger pedestal Page 1
  4/25/1910 Wilson to Venable, Description of how the figure will be an original design and not a stock figure or replica. Sets price at $7,500 for the statue, pedestal, and relief. Wilson confirms that the monument can be made larger and match the surrounding buildings. Page 1
  4/28/1910 Venable to Kenan asking if she has the plaster model and whether she can send it to him Page 1
  4/28/1910 Venable to Wilson explaining the addition of three bronze text tablets stating the Daughters of the Confederacy's role in the monuments erection, a sentiment or motto, and a list of the alumni who entered the service of the Confederacy Page 1
  4/30/1910 Kenan to Venable Page 1
  4/30/1910 Wilson to Venable, reiterates $7,500 cost for 8ft. statue, pedestal, bronze relief, and bronze tablet. Discusses $500 cost for modeling and casting of additional bronze tablets. Page 1
895 5/1/1910 Kenan to Venable Page 1 Page 2Page 3Page 4
  5/4/1910 Venable to Wilson, requests the cost of casting the three bronze tablets Page 1
  5/4/1910 Venable to London, asking whether May 16th can be the date of the next committee meeting Page 1
  5/4/1910 Venable to Kenan about finding the model before the next meeting Page 1
  5/9/1910 Venable to Kenan acknowledging suggestions she made, model still hasn't arrived Page 1
  5/10/1910 Wilson to Venable, Wilson estimates cost for casting 3 bronze tablets at $240, size of the tablets at 30 in. by 36 in., a more detailed clay model will be submitted to the committee later Page 1
896 5/23/1910 Venable to London, Carr can be at the meeting, etc. Page 1
  5/23/1910 Adding E.J. Hale to the monument advisory committee and meeting set for June 1st, the morning after Commencement Page 1
  5/26/1910 Wilson to Venable, general business Page 1
  5/26/1910 London to Venable, changing meeting time for Carr Page 1Page 2
897 6/2/1910 London to Venable, someone thinks the base of the monument should be bigger Page 1Page 2Page 3
  6/2/1910 Venable to Wilson, committee accepted changes to pedestal and decides that only a front and back tablet will be used Page 1
  6/4/1910 Venable to London, Mr. Bairdstow spoke about the pedestal, communicating with Wilson Page 1Page 2
898 7/6/1910 Wilson to London regarding the statue design Page 1
899 8/9/1910 Venable to London, asking about her visit with Wilson, saying he is ready to start raising money Page 1
  8/15/1910 Wilson to London, Sending new sketches showing changes to the monument, procured another gun for the model, made a 32 inch, one-third scale figure, his visit, etc. Page 1Page 2
  August 1910 London to Venable, Wilson came to visit her, talked with veterans, looked at sketches, etc. design questions Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4
900 8/18/1910 Venable to London, Objects to flags being added to the monument due to additional cost Page 1
  8/25/1910 Wilson to London, about gun, flags, pedestal ornaments, type of granite Page 1Page 2
  8/26/1910 Venable to Wilson about the U.D.C. not having much money, he doesn't want to sign contract until it looks like there are funds, Carr is willing to sign the contract as Venable cannot (it would put financial responsibility on the University if he signed it) 

Page 1

Page 2

  8/29/1910 Wilson to Venable, has completed one-third sized nude working model, unsure about postponing the project Page 1Page 2
901 9/5/1910 Venable to Wilson, the University cannot pay any of the money, can only help raise money--Venable was counting on a significant donor who hadn't come through Page 1
 902 9/26/1910 Wilson to Venable, pausing the work Page 1
  9/29/1910 Venable to Wilson, will keep him updated Page 1
903 10/6/1910 London to Venable, changes to design, Sprunt will donate Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4Page 5Page 6
  10/8/1910 National Marble to Venable, asking for update on their memorial arch and monument proposal Page 1
  10/8/1910 Venable to London--keep the base simple, cut the flags, pine designs Page 1Page 2
  10/11/1910 Venable to National Marble, notifying them that the committee decided on the design of another firm Page 1
  circa 1911 Venable to Mr. Sprunt, acknowledges Mrs. Sprunt's position on the committee, says he is going to attend to the committee's business matters himself, including visiting Boston to inspect the competed model Page 1
  1/13/1911 London to Venable, she has not heard from John Wilson and doesn't know what he is doing. She is trying to get the different chapters of the U.D.C. to collect money Page 1Page 2Page 3
909 1/16/1911 Venable to Mrs. London, telling her about the September decision to pause work due to being unable make payments on the contract. Has plans for the upcoming commencement to raise the necessary funds. Page 1
  1/30/1911 N.H.D. Wilson to Venable regretting he cannot donate to the monument fund Page 1
912 3/20/1911 Venable to London, campaign to raise money including notices in daily papers. Involving more NC chapters of U.D.C. would help raise the necessary funds, but many are fundraising for local monuments. Mentions contacting the New York Alumni association Page 1
913 3/21/1911 List of donors and amounts (could possibly be donations to something else) Page 1Page 2
916 4/24/1911 List of donors, continued Page 1
918 5/20/1911 London to Venable about the money raised by the U.D.C., division of U.D.C. and University money Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4
919 5/22/1911 Venable to London, U.D.C. collections amount to $1,100 with more pledged, advising not to publicize campaign to raise money before commencement because "sometimes a statement of that kind beforehand gives a warning that closes the purse." Page 1
  5/23/1911 London to Venable, when will the monument be unveiled, what should go in the papers? Page 1Page 2
  5/25/1911 Venable to London, Not necessary to state in the that the newspapers that the monument will not be unveiled at the 1911 commencement, communication with Wilson regarding stopping work to prevent incurring additional expenses, raising money at commencement Page 1Page 2
  5/29/1911 List of donors, continued Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4
920 6/5/1911 Venable to London--Alumni subscribed for $5,000 of the monument cost, U.D.C. expected to produce a total of $2,500 making them responsible for 1/3 of the funds and the alumni 2/3 of the funds Page 1
  6/5/1911 Venable to Wilson--money almost completely collected, ready to sign contract and have the work completed Page 1
  6/12/1911 Wilson to Venable, contract will be sent within next two days, will start monument after finishing one in Maine Page 1
  6/12/1911 Solicitation letter with response Page 1
921 6/15/1911 Venable to London, necessary to decide on changes to the design and location of monument. Serious objections have been raised concerning the chosen location. Venable will travel to Boston to describe design changes in person. Page 1
  6/16/1911 Venable to Wilson, Wilson has completed Brownfield monument (Daniel A. Bean statue) and Venable requess a picture. Page 1
  6/16/1911 Wilson to Venable, sending contract and proceeding with commisioned work Page 1
  6/17/1911 Venable to London, payment at time of contract signing, transfering money from the UDC treasurer to the University Bursar Page 1
922 6/19/1911 Venable to London regarding who will be responsible for fund collection and payment, statue details including its location and the type of granite to be used Page 1Page 2
  6/21/1911 London to Venable, Venable should be the one to sign the contract and handle the funds Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4
  6/21/1911 Gilchrist to Venable regarding donations Page 1Page 2Page 3
  6/22/1911 Nothing is too good for them" donation letter Page 1
923 7/4/1911 Venable to John Wilson--tablet on back of monument less expensive than estimated due to featuring a simple dedication rather than historical details Page 1
942 3/7/1912 Venable to London, photos had been sent to U.D.C. members Page 1
976 1/27/1913 Venable to John Wilson (sculptor), Yet to receive granite sample Page 1
977 2/6/1913 Granite sample has been received and approved by the committee Page 1
978 2/22/1913 Casting of the statue complete and it will be ready for unveiling at commencement. $1,500 is still due on the subscriptions Page 1
980 3/18/1913 Question about the monument, whether names will be inscribed Page 1
  3/18/1913 Venable response to above Page 1
  3/19/1913 Venable to London regarding ceremony plans Page 1
981 3/29/1913 Venable to Williams regarding ceremony plans Page 1
  3/29/1913 Venable to London regarding ceremony plans Page 1Page 2
  3/31/1913 Venable to Wilson asking about specifics of the wording for the inscription and telling Wilson about the dedication. Page 1
  3/31/1913 Discussion of asking veterans to speak at the ceremony Page 1
982 4/1/1913 Discussion of asking veterans to speak at the ceremony, cont. Page 1
  4/2/1913 Discussion of shipping statue materials Page 1
  4/3/1913 Discussion of music at the ceremony (playing of "Dixie") Page 1
984 4/19/1913 Donation letter ("Children of the Confederacy" to London, forwarded to Venable) Page 1Page 2
985 5/8/1913 Arrival of granite, Venable to John Wilson Page 1
986 5/12/1913 Letter from John Wilson talking about statue details Page 1
  5/15/1913 "The ideal commemorated by this monument..." (2nd paragraph) Page 1
987 5/16/1913 Letter asking a pledged donor to complete his donation. More of these letters can be found in Folder 987. Page 1
  5/16/1913 Julian Carr requesting student-soldier statistics from Venable Page 1
  5/21/1913 Venable to London, nervous about the unveiling, rejecting her decoration plan Page 1
988 5/27/1913 Governor Locke Craig discussing arrangements (enclosure describing the University students and alumni who entered the confederate army, their ranks, duties and how many died during the course of the war) Page 1
  5/28/1913 Carr sending excerpt of speech for fact-checking (numbers) Page 1
  5/28/1913 Venable's response to Carr Page 1
  5/29/1913 Venable's response to Locke Craig Page 1
  5/29/1913 Donation letter Page 1
  5/30/1913 Planning around Governor Craig's schedule Page 1
  5/31/1913 Craig's response Page 1
  5/31/1913 Class of 1903 monument donations: list of donor names and thier donation amounts. Page 1
989 6/4/1913 Man offering $5.00 to monument fund Page 1
  6/5/1913 Donation letter Page 1
  6/5/1913 Letter to Kenan regretting her absence at the unveiling as it was "her idea" Page 1
Oversize 14   Contract with sculptor John Wilson Page 1


Board of Trustees Minutes (University Archives #40001)

Volume 11

Page 177: The Board approves the United Daughters of the Confederacy's request for a Confederate monument to be built on campus (June 1, 1908).

Page 340: The minutes note that funds have been secured to build the monument (December, 1911).

Page 413: The minutes report that the monument is to be unveiled that week. The minutes also include a story about students providing a formal burial for a Confederate veteran whose body was dissected by medical students (June 3, 1913).

Page 482: The minutes note that the University will pay the last $500 due in payment for the monument (October 26, 1914).

Materials from the 2 June 1913 unveiling of the monument

Program for the unveiling of the Confederate Monument

A program from the dedication of the monument, from the University Ephemera Collection in the North Carolina Collection, outlines the event's speakers and musical performances. The unveiling was part of the 1913 Commencement activities.

Speeches by Bettie Jackson London and H.A. London at the unveiling of the monument

Accessible via the Internet Archive, from the North Carolina Collection (call number Cp378 UK34).

Speech by Governor Locke Craig at the unveiling of the monument

From the Raleigh News and Observer, 3 June 1913.

Speech by Mary Lyde Williams at the unveiling of the monument

Printed in the Wilmington Morning Star, 15 June 1913.

Speech by President Francis Preston Venable at the unveiling of the monument

From the Francis Preston Venable Papers (Southern Historical Collection #04368.

Page: 1 2

Speech by Julian Shakespeare Carr at the unveiling of the monument

From the Julian Shakespeare Carr Papers (Southern Historical Collection #00141), Box 4, Folder 26 (Scans 93-112).

Speech delivered at the June 2, 1913 unveiling of the monument, in which Carr lauded the Confederate army's "sav[ing] the very life of the Anglo Saxon race in the South" and recalled "horse-whipp[ing] a negro wench until her skirts hung in shreds" for insulting a white woman on Franklin Street.

Full PDF

Page: 1 2 3 4 4 5 6 7 8 9 9a 9b 9c 10 11 12 13 14 15 16

(Carr's original page numbering, with duplicate numbers, has been retained.)

John L. Sanders Papers (Southern Historical Collection #04858)

Box 13, folder "Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Historic Properties: Silent Sam"
(not available online)

Newspaper clippings on the 1986 restoration of Silent Sam.


Office of the Chancellor, Paul Hardin Records (University Archives #40025)

Box 1:10, folder Race Relations, General (not available online)

Photocopies of news articles about the gathering at Silent Sam during the 1992 L.A. Riots, materials related to Chancellor Hardin’s speech at the gathering.


John Kenyon Chapman Papers (Southern Historical Collection #05441)

Series 4. Freedom Legacy Project Records, 1995-2008  (not available online)

The John Kenyon ("Yonni") Chapman Papers include documentation of the Freedom Legacy Project, an organization, active from 1995 to 2001, that focused on exposing institutional racism at the university and documenting the campus' history of racial conflict and activism.


University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Confederate Monument Protests Collected Tweets (#40486) 

Part of the University Archives’ strategy for documenting protests of the Confederate Monument was to selectively capture tweets. Read more about how these tweets were collected and how to access them on the University Archives blog. 


UNC at Chapel Hill Ephemera Collection (#40446) 

Campus Life Ephemera, 2017, Folder 26 and Digital Folder 6: Confederate monument protests 

This collection includes flyers and other ephemera related to protests of the Confederate Monument in 2017. The materials were distributed or displayed on campus and collected by library staff. 


University Archives Web Archives – Confederate Monument Protests 

This collection of webpages captured using Archive-It includes news stories and editorialsstatements from UNC departments, and other web content related to protests of the Confederate Monument. 

Raleigh News and Observer

More recent articles related to the Confederate Monument from the News and Observer can be found in our collection of archived websites and on the News and Observer website.

Date Link
6/3/1913 "Notable Events Mark Class Day at the University" article on the statue unveiling, the speeches made

Carolina Alumni Review

Date Link
Dec. 1967, page 1 Collection of photos, including workmen cleaning the statue
January 1975, page 6 "Silent Sam a Yankee"
May 1981, cover "Spring Cleaning for 'Sam'"
Summer 1986, page 2 "Silent Sam's On Sabbatical"
Summer 1992, page 29 "LA Verdict, BCC Issue Stir Campus Concerns"
Summer 1992, page 67 "The Legend of Silent Sam"
May-June 2000, page 14 "Breaking the Silence About Sam"
Nov.-Dec. 2011, page 10 "As Time Goes By, Sam Seems to Get Noisier"


The Daily Tar Heel

This list does not include every DTH article that mentions Silent Sam, but rather provides a representative sample from across the monument's history. Additional articles can be found by searching DigitalNCthe Daily Tar Heel website, and our collection of archived websites.

Date Link
4/1/1911 "Monument for Campus" discusses the proposed monument and includes a photo of a model of the monument
2/23/1954 "Campus Seen" The Daily Tar Heel refers to the monument as "Silent Sam" for the first time
9/28/1954 "While UNC beat State - State Vandalized UNC" The base of the monument is smeared with black paint and a beer bottle is attached to Silent Sam's rifle
9/29/1954 "Campus Seen"
5/3/1959 "Looking Back By Senior" P.W. Carlton, a senior reflects on his time at UNC
3/17/1965 A letter to the editors of the Daily Tar Heel by Al Ribak, titled "Silent Sam Should Leave," sparks discussion in the newspaper over the following days
4/4/1968 "Silent Sam - Solicitous Soldier" Brief history of the statue
4/9/1968 "Silent Sam's Dignity Restored" Students cleaning paint from the statue and adorning statue with Confederate flags, responding to passersby, etc.
3/30/1969 "South Rises Again...Briefly" - report on a Kappa Alpha fraternity gathering at the monument to "celebrate the grace and charm of the Old South"
4/19/1971 An Interview with Silent Sam
4/23/1968 "South Could Rise If It Would Break from Racial Past"
9/24/1973 "73 Yack Lacks Black Viewpoint" Letter to the editor about images in 1973 Yackety Yack, including one of Silent Sam
9/26/1973 "Silent Sam Gets Reader's Defense" Letter to the editor
9/29/1973 "Reader replies to statue defense" Letter to the editor
10/5/1973 "Silent Sam a landmark, not racism" Letter to the editor
4/23/1986 "Silent Sam Heads North: Statue to get $8,200 makeover" Restoration
8/21/1986 "A shiny Silent Sam prepares to resume place on pedestal" Restoration
11/6/1986 "Silent Sam's fixed; the truck breaks down" Resoration
11/11/1986 "Silent Sam takes place on pedestal Wednesday" Restoration
11/13/1986 "Silent Sam retakes his final stand"
10/24/1990 "Sexism and racist images: offensive statues need to be removed at once" Editorial on racism and sexism of "Student Body" and Silent Sam
10/25/1990 "Silent Sam does have negative implications", "Call to remove statues same as censorship", Letters to the editor in response to 10/24 editorial
1/22/1991 ""University community reacts to war in gulf" - "Support the Troops" rally at monument
5/18/1992 "Community reacts to King case, L.A. riots" LA verdict demonstration
4/11/2003 Letter from Gerald Horne comparing Silent Sam to Hussein statues
4/14/2003 Responses to Horne
10/15/2003 DiPhi debate on Silent Sam
10/17/2003 Letter to the editor about 10/15 article
9/18/2011 "Real Silent Sam movement holds protest focused on statue’s history"
9/19/2011 "Not-so-silent Sam"
9/20/2011 "Silent Sam needs a future reminding people of past" (Letter to the editor)
9/22/2011 "Plaque on Silent Sam would prove offensive" (Letter to the editor)
9/23/2011 "Quiet down on Silent Sam"