All of us, at one time or another, have had a strong desire to be able to get into a time machine and be transported magically to an earlier place and time. Science has not yet produced for us such a time machine, but the Federal Writers Project (FWP), a division of the Works Progress Administration, did produce for prosperity guides to all of the old 48 states. Using talented local researchers and writers the FWP created an image of America fifty plus years ago.
North Carolina: The WPA Guide to the Old North State is a reprint of the original WPA guide. It contains a calendar of events and sections on the natural setting, Indians, history, Negroes, agriculture, modes of travel, industry and labor, education, religion, sports and recreation, folkways and folklore. A section on the principal cities and towns, their history and interesting facts about the present-day communities, and points of interest are included.
William S. Powell is professor of history emeritus at the University of North Carolina.