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Preservation of Historic Cemeteries

Do you own or manage a historic family or church cemetery? These cemetery preservation and maintenance tips have been prepared by staff from the Walker Local & Family History Center at Richland Library.

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Just for the Record 🎶

A few weeks ago, I was casually chatting with my mother-in-law about some exciting new things happening at the library including the re-launch of our vinyl collection. Come to find out, she actually worked at the library during the early 1970s and was responsible for curating the library’s record collection. How cool is that? With October also being National Family History Month, I knew I couldn’t miss the opportunity to pick her brain. 

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Columbia's Farmers Markets

Tomatoes, okra, squash, cucumbers, and watermelon. These are my favorite summer vegetables and they always taste best when I buy them at a local farmers market.

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View from the Jefferson Hotel

For over 50 years, the Jefferson Hotel stood elegantly on the corner of Main and Laurel Streets in downtown Columbia.

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Richland Library Main

History of the Syrian-Lebanon Society in Columbia

The history of the Syrian-Lebanon Society in Columbia tells the story of a group of immigrants who came to South Carolina seeking opportunity, and who eventually blended the cultures from their homeland to that in their new-found home.

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Signs of Segregation from Columbia's Past

Discover places in downtown Columbia that once held signs of segregation through these "then and now" images constructed from historic photographs in our archives.

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Black-Owned Newspapers in Columbia

Over the years, there have been several newspapers published in Columbia covering news and events for Black readers. Let’s take a look at some of these titles and find out where you can access them.

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What Exactly Is DHEC?

DHEC has been in the news a lot lately. Learn more about this crucial part of the South Carolina government.

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Remembering the Palmetto State Fair

Generations of Black Columbians attended the Palmetto State Fair, held each fall at the State fairgrounds in Columbia. Let’s look back at a brief history of this fair.

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South Carolina's Homes for Unwed Mothers

In a time not so long ago, unwed girls and women who found themselves “in trouble” had few options. Women with an unplanned pregnancy would face the frightening prospects of raising their child without support, finding a family member to take in their child, obtaining a back-alley abortion, or, if they were lucky, disappearing to a home for unwed mothers to deliver their child in secrecy.

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Third Cousin Twice Removed?

Do you need to refresh your memory on how exactly you and Cousin Sue are related before the next family reunion?

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Washington Street's Black Business District

Two downtown blocks on Washington Street were once known as Columbia's Black Downtown. View historic photographs of the district from the Walker Local & Family History Center.

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Five Trailblazing Women of Richland County

Let's look at five amazing women leaders who not only have made a positive impact all across Richland County, but have broken down barriers while they were at it. 

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The Story of the Big Apple Night Club

The Big Apple nightclub was once a swinging spot in downtown Columbia where the music could be heard for blocks around and the dancers took to the floor and started a national dance craze. Let’s take a look back at the exciting story of the Big Apple.

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Most Popular Historic Images in December 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in December, 2020.

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Richland Library Sandhills

Stories of Struggle: A Book Review

Claudia Smith Brinson's Stories of Struggle: The Clash Over Civil Rights in South Carolina shines a light on some of South Carolina's most influential pioneers of social justice.

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Most Popular Historic Images in October 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in October, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in September 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in September, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Voting in Columbia, a historical perspective

The right to vote is the foundation of our democracy, granting the right to have a voice in our society. For anyone deprived of these rights, the struggle to secure them has been worth the fight. Explore some historic touchpoints that converge around the evolution of the right to vote in Columbia.

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The Census Through The Centuries

Because of the “72 year rule,” the 2020 Census will not be available for genealogists until 2092. When it is released, will your descendants be able to find you in the 2020 Census?

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Most Popular Historic Images in August 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in August, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in July 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in July, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in June 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in June, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

A Shameful History

As curator to Richland Library’s historic photograph collection, I have come face to face with evidence of South Carolina’s shameful history of police violence and unequal justice for African Americans.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in May 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in May, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in April 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in April, 2020.

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Richland Library Main

Most Popular Historic Images in March 2020

With over 7,000 images in the Local History Digital Collections it can be hard to find those hidden gems. Take a look at what your neighbors found interesting in March, 2020.

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Moments in Local Women’s History

Celebrate National Women’s History Month with a look back at events that shaped women’s roles in our community. Some moments moved us forward, others bring the glass ceiling into relief. In all we meet women who have made strides in expanding the role of women in our community.

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March 2, 1961 at the State House

New discoveries from the Local History collections illuminate a March 2, 1961 civil rights protest in Columbia that led to a U.S. Supreme Court decision.

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Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in Columbia

The city of Columbia has felt the impact of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in countless ways. We are lucky to have some photographs of the great man in our local newspaper archive.

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Awkward Christmas Photos

From quirky to cute, Christmas photographs in the Local History Digital Collections can help put you in the holiday spirit. Here is a selection of some of the more unusual sights of Christmases past.

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Faces at the Carillon Parade

Columbia has hosted the Carillon Parade annually since 1953, both to usher in the holiday season and to showcase the area’s bands and talent. The library’s Local History Digital Collections allows us to see the evolution of the parade and to catch a glimpse of the smiling faces it inspired.

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Ghosts of Photographers Past

Working with photograph archives I often feel the “presence” of the photographers who created the collection. It is as if they are watching to make sure I get it right.

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Columbia during the Cold War

Historic images in the Local History collection illuminate Columbia during the Cold War era as marked by a mixture of fear that we might experience a nuclear disaster and optimism that we could survive one.

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A Look Back at the Assembly Street Post Office

Columbia City Council will purchase the U.S. Post Office building on Assembly Street. Let's take a look back at the history of this building with images from the Local History Digital Collections. 📷 

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Main Street at Mid-Century

A historic photograph collection in Local History reveals a bustling Main Street in Columbia.

Database

NewsBank

NewsBank provides access to hundreds of newspapers from around the country and within South Carolina, including The State and The Post and Courier.