Skip to main content

Straughan's Book Shop Records

Identifier: MSS 0037

Scope and Contents

The Straughan's Book Shop Records date from 1930-1962, with the bulk of the collection covering the period 1945-1962. The papers include correspondence with patrons, publishers, and authors; advertising and promotional material; reviews and articles. There are also photographs and radio scripts for the promotion of authors and books.

The bulk of the autographed correspondence was written by authors associated with the state of North Carolina or the American South. Other notable items in this collection include: promotional booklets for Carl Sandburg's Always the Young Stranger and Remembrance Rock; Peter Beagle's A Fine and Private Place (filed under Viking); Elizabeth Gray Vining's Country Life of Nippon; and Van Wycke Brook's Makers and Finders. There are also booklists for the White House Library dating from 1929 and copies of some National Book Awards speeches from the 1950s.


  • 1930 - 1962
  • Majority of material found within 1945 - 1962


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is retained by the creators of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information. Please see our Sensitive Materials Statement.

Biographical or Historical Information

The three Straughan sisters--Mattie, Alice, and Mabel--operated bookstores at various locations in Greensboro and High Point, North Carolina, from 1924 to 1960. They remained associated with the Greensboro store until 1962. Retail merchandising was an unusual career for women in the American South of the 1920s, but the Straughans were successful entrepreneurs: through the years they expanded their mail order business until they earned the title, "Booksellers to the South".


6.40 Linear Feet (16 boxes)

Language of Materials



The three Straughan sisters -- Mattie, Alice, and Mabel -- operated bookstores at various locations in Greensboro and High Point, North Carolina, from 1924 to 1960.

The Straughan's Book Shop Records include correspondence, promotional material, reviews, articles, and photographs.

Arrangement Note

The collection is arranged in 3 series: 1: Correspondence; 2: Clippings; and 3: Audio recording, photographs, and publications

Method of Acquisition

These records were in the library in 1972 and were recorded by Archives staff in 1975.

Offensive Language Statement

The UNC Greensboro University Libraries collects, preserves, and makes accessible unique and historical materials for learning and research. The nature of historical materials is such that some material may represent positions, norms, and values that are offensive and objectionable. These materials represent the opinions and actions of their creators. By providing access to these records in our reading room and through our digital collections, we recognize that archives and rare books can play a vital role in holding those creators accountable and in helping us learn from the past.

Our finding aids and other collection descriptions may occasionally re-use language provided by creators or former holders of the materials, but we strive to place outdated or offensive terminology in context. That said, we recognize that we may not always make the right decision and welcome feedback from all sources so we can learn and adjust our practices. Please contact us at if you encounter problematic language in our finding aids or other collection description. We will review the language and, as appropriate, update it in a way that balances preservation of the original context with our ongoing commitment to describing materials with respectful and inclusive language.

Processing Information

Processed by Archives staff.


Straughan's Book Shop Records
Archives staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Martha Blakeney Hodges Special Collections and University Archives Repository

P.O. Box 26170
320 College Ave.
Greensboro NC 27402-6170 US