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Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Materials

Filing title: 
Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Collection

Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence papers
MS0321

Summary Information

Repository
J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte
Creator
J. Murrey Atkins Library (University of North Carolina at Charlotte).
Title
Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence collection
ID
MS0321
Date [inclusive]
1775-1975
Extent
2.0 Linear feet
Language
English
Mixed materials [Box]
1
Abstract
The collection contains an assortment of papers concerning the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence (1775), the Mecklenburg County Resolves (1775) and hand-drawn sketches of historic landmarks in Mecklenburg County, N.C.

Preferred Citation note

Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Papers. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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Biographical/Historical note

The Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence was a document allegedly produced by prominent men in Mecklenburg County, NC in May of 1775, for the purpose of separating the county from British rule early in the Revolutionary period. Though no original copy of the "Meck-Dec" is known to exist, there are numerous "reproductions."

Some historians believe that around the year 1800, when those men who were supposed to have participated in the composition of the "Meck-Dec" reminisced back to the Revolutionary days, they were actually remembering the document incorrectly; and that they were actually thinking of the Mecklenburg County Resolves--a document whose existance is verifiable. A book on this subject, entitled "Chain of Error" expounds on the matter.

According to the document, the SIGNERS OF THE MECKLENBURG DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE were General Thomas Polk, Dr. Ephraim Brevard, General Robert Irwin, Reverend Hezekiah Balch, Captain Zaccheus Wilson, Richard Barry, William Graham, John Queary, Waightstill Avery, Colonel James Harris, John Foard, Major John Davidson, Benjamin Patton, Richard Harris, Colonel Abraham Alexander, Colonel Adam Alexander, John McKnitt Alexander, Hezekiah Alexander, Neil Morrison, John Flennikin, Matthew McClure, Ezra Alexander, Colonel William Kennon, Henry Downs, Charles Alexander, John Phifer, and David Reese. Spectators to the historical signing were General Joseph Graham, General George Graham, Reverend Francis Cummings, Colonel Ezekiel Polk, Robert Harris Sr., and David Rose (Grandfather of Pres. Polk).

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Scope and Contents note

The collection contains an assortment of papers concerning the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence, the Mecklenburg County Resolves and artwork of historical landmarks in Mecklenburg County, N.C.

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Arrangement note

The collection is divided into three series: Series I contains papers concerning the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence (including "facsimiles" of the Meck Dec); Series II contains papers related to the Mecklenburg County Resolves; and Series III contains reproductions of art work produced by Teresa Beth Hough and Al Fincher.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte March 2011

9201 University City Blvd.
Charlotte, NC, 28223
704-687-1170
spec-coll@uncc.edu

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use note

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Processing Information note

Processed by Robert A. McInnes, 2011.

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Controlled Access Headings

Geographic Name(s)

  • Charlotte (N.C.)--Buildings, structures, etc.
  • Mecklenburg County (N.C.)
  • Mecklenburg County (N.C.)--Illustrations

Subject(s)

  • Historic buildings--North Carolina--Charlotte
  • Historic sites--North Carolina--Charlotte
  • Historic sites--North Carolina--Mecklenburg County

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Collection Inventory

Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence and Resolves 

Box
1
Folder
1

Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence reproductions 

Scope and Contents note

In Charlotte, May 20, 1775 ..., 7 copies, various sizes and papers

Harper's Weekly June 12, 1875    1.0 Items

Scope and Contents note

The Mecklenburg Centennial--Charlotte, NC. (photostat copy, p. 476)

Harper's Weekly   1.0 Items

Scope and Contents note

Charlotte, North Carolina - Drawn by Louis Joutel. Illustrations of Graded School Building, Lord Cornwallis's Headquarters, Tryon Street looking southwest, Residence of Colonel William Johnston - Mayor of Charlotte, and Presbyterian Church. [accompanied article, "The Industrial South" on pg. 255] (photostat copy, p. 268 of a supplement)

 Sinclair, Anne Rural Hill Retreat 

Scope and Contents note

John & Violet Davidson's first home was a two room log cabin they called Rural Retreat. The cabin stood for 135 years, eventually growing to growing to eight rooms. Unfortunately, there are no known photographs of the structure. It burned in 1898. Major John Davidson who settled in the Piedmont of NC in 1760. Davidson was a signer of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence in 1775 and served in the Mecklenburg County militia during the American Revolution. This is a photograph of a sketch of the Retreat as depicted by Anne Sinclair.

"Rural Hill" Plantation House 

Scope and Contents note

Caption reads, "'Photograph of the ruins of 'Rural Hill' plantation House, built by Major John Davidson, 1788, in Mecklenburg County on the Catawba River." The Davidson mansion burned down in 1886 and all that remains are some of the pillars to the house and a few related outbuildings.

North Carolina Review June 2, 1912   1.0 Items

Scope and Contents note

photostat copy of pages 1 and 2 of the North Carolina Review. Contains article, "In Commemoration of the Famous 20th of May, 1775 Leaders of Independence" (address delivered in the State Capitol Raleigh at the Presentation of the Mecklenburg Declaration Tablet)

Box Folder

Mecklenburg County Resolves   1.0 Items

Scope and Contents note

Photocopy of what The Mecklenburg Resolves as printed in the North Carolina Gazette, June 16, 1775

1 1

Charlotte Observer, Mecklenburg Independence Day Edition 1975 May 18   1.0 Items

Scope and Contents note

Special edition published as "Bicentennial news" celebrating the anniversary of the signing of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. Contemporary writers contributed articles as might have been written in 1775 and also modern day examinations of the evidence and mysteries surrounding the document.

Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Charlotte observer (Charlotte, N.C. : 1916).
1 3

Book review of Chain of Error... 1961 January 5 

Scope and Contents note

Photocopy of a book review of "Chain of error and the Mecklenburg Declarations of Independence" by V. V. McNitt. Title of the review: "May 20 Declaration of Independence no myth, says New England writer." The review was submitted by Chalmers G. Davidson, Davidson College. The review appeared in the Mecklenburg Gazette, Thursday, Jan. 5, 1961.

Box

Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence Souvenir book / Hotel Charlotte Postcard pamphlet 

Scope and Contents note

Issued in 1909, this souvenir edition of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence commemorated the 134th anniversary of the signing and a celebration of the event held May 18-20 of that year, with special guests, President and Mrs. William Taft. Although issued in 1909, this edition was actually copyrighted 1898 by the Queen City Printing and Paper Co. The book contains text of the document, and the history of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg region, along with photographs of places of interest and advertising material. A postcard pamphlet of the Hotel Charlotte is laid in.

Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Hotel Charlotte (Charlotte, N.C.).
1

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Illustrations 

Box
1
Folder
2

 Hough, Teresa Beth, 1953- Rexham Corp. (Charlotte, N.C.). Charlotte Area Landmark Collection 

Scope and Contents note

Includes a letter from the Rexham Corp. to a member of the Mecklenburg Historical Association concerning the collection of prints called the "Charlotte Area Landmark Collection." There is also a brochure containing the background of the prints and also a xerox copy of an article about the artist, Teresa Beth Hough, that appeared in the Carolina Living section of the Charlotte Observer on Wed., April 6, 1977.

Box
1
Folder
2

Thompson Orphanage Chapel 

Latta Place 

Philanthropic Hall 

Robert Grier House 

Biddle Hall 

Berryhill House 

Liddell-McNinch House 

"Victoria" 

St. Peter's Episcopal Church 

Fire Station No. 7 

James Knox Polk Birthplace 

Seaboard Train Station 

 Fincher, Al Mutual Savings and Loan Association, F.A. (N.C.). Mecklenburg Landmarks 

Scope and Contents note

Collection of prints by Al Fincher of places of interest in the Mecklenburg County area of NC. An information sheet accompanies each print. The project was sponsored by Mutual Savings and Loan Association, 1966.

Box
1
Folder
2

Cedar Grove Plantation, built in 1831 by James G. Torrance 

The Latta House, Circa 1800, Charlotte, NC 

The Rosedale, Circa 1800, Charlotte, NC 

Maxwell Chambers Administrative Building, Davidson College, Davidson, NC 

Hezekiah Alexander, "Rock House," Charlotte, NC 

Mecklenburg County Court House, Charlotte, NC 

Cowans Ford Dam--Forming Lake Norman--North Carolina's "Inland Sea" 

The American Doughboy Statue--Charlotte, NC 

The Old Inn, Davidson, NC 

The Great Seal of the State of North Carolina   4.0 Items 4 copies

Box Folder

Battle of Cowan's Ford, February 1, 1781, by Dave Teague 

1 3

Hezekiah Alexander Home, Charlotte, N.C. 

Scope and Contents note

Sketch of the historic stone house built by one of the signers of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. Part of a calendar or promotion titled, "Portrait of our Home Town" and on the verso is stamped, "Seasons Greetings from Vinson Realty Co., Inc." Artist was D. Godwin.

 Smith, Charles Roy Hezekiah Alexander House 

Scope and Contents note

Charles Roy Smith's illustration of the historic stone house built by one of the signers of the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence.

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Maps 

Box
1
Folder
4

Plan of the City of New Bern, NC, by Baron Christoph von Graffenreid, 1710 

Scope and Contents note

Photostat copy of the original.

D. Carolina nebsteinem Theil von Florida, 1712 

Scope and Contents note

Photostat copy of the original

Map of Mecklenburg County, 1789 

Scope and Contents note

Original map from which this was compiled bore this inscription: "A plan of Mecklenburg and portions of adjoining counties...January 16, 1789, by major Joseph Graham.

Centennial Map of Charlotte, NC, 1875 

Scope and Contents note

The map shows the four wards of Charlotte in 1875.

Butler's Map made 1892 

Map of Mecklenburg County, NC, 1911 

Scope and Contents note

Map in two sheets

[Historical map of Mecklenburg County, ca. 1975] 

Scope and Contents note

Copyright: Mecklenburg Furniture Shops, Inc.

Historic Sites in Charlotte circa 1975 

Scope and Contents note

Copyright: Jefferson Standard Broadcasting Co. (2 copies)

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