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Durham and Local History at the Rubenstein Library

This guide will help you research Durham history using primary source materials held at the Rubenstein Library


Maps of Durham can be found under the subject heading: Durham (N.C.) -- Maps. The Perkins Maps Collection also has a large number of maps of Durham  Some early maps at the Rubenstein include: 

Gray's new map of Durham, Durham County, North Carolina, 1881
Depicts buildings, street names, businesses, property owners, and railroads in Durham, North Carolina.

Map of Durham County, N.C., 1887
Indicates the location of landowners, churches, quarries, saw mills, creeks, railroads and a coal mine. Includes advertisements for local businesses and illustrations of prominent factories, warehouses, churches, and homes. 

Bird's-eye view of the city of Durham, North Carolina 1891
This 1891 map shows an aerial view of Durham and provides an extensive index to the location of tobacco warehouses, factories, restaurants, groceries, dry goods dealers, churches, and residences located in Durham.

Map of Durham, East and West Durham, N.C. 1924
Durham Chamber of Commerce map depicting schools, mills, factories, and cemeteries in Durham. This map contains information pertaining to Durham neighborhoods.

Hayti-Elizabeth Street Renewal Area : General Neighborhood Renewal Plan : Project No. N.C. R-7 (GN) (Available online)
Maps from the Durham Redevelopment Commission depicting existing and proposed structures and modifications to the Hayti neighborhood. The "structural/environmental condition" map (Map one, part 4) shows "defects" to structures in Hayti.

Manuscript Collections

Isabelle Budd Papers, 1951-1999

Member of the Durham City Council (N.C.) and Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority of N.C. She participated in a number of local planning committees/governmental groups including the Highway 147 planning process. Collection contains reports, correspondence, and other materials concerning the development of Durham, especially the East-West Freeway, its opposition, and the development of downtown. 
Harris was the first African American city councilman in Durham, N.C., and the first black man to sit on the Durham County Board of Education. The Durham City Council series includes material related to the Durham Redevelopment Commission and the Hayti-Elizabeth Street Redevelopment Project. Harris served as a real estate agent for the Redevelopment Commission of the City of Durham as it acquired properties in the redevelopment area. Box 11 contains preliminary certificates of title for properties, offers of sale of land, and correspondence with property owners in Hayti.