Skip to main content

Records of the University of North Carolina System

 Record Group
Identifier: UA-RG-01

Scope and Contents

This record group includes biographical information for UNC System presidents, photocopies of Board of Governors meeting minutes, correspondence, committee records, legal records, news clippings, newsletters, publications, and photographs from the 1960s to the present. Records pertain to North Carolina's public universities, the University of North Carolina Board of Governors, and/or UNC Wilmington as a constituent institution of the system. This record group does not provide a comprehensive administrative history of the University of North Carolina System. Rather, it consolidates materials from and about the multicampus University of North Carolina that had been collected by various UNCW administrators and offices.


  • 1965 - 2018


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

The content described is copyrighted and presented courtesy of the University of North Carolina Wilmington Randall Library. This material may be used for educational and scholarship purposes provided: a) proper attribution accompanies any use of the content; b) the use, copy, republication, display, and/or distribution is not for commercial purposes; and c) you may not alter, add to, change, modify, or revise the subject content.

Historical Note

The University of North Carolina (System) consists of all public educational institutions in the state that grant baccalaureate degrees. The University of North Carolina Wilmington is one of 17 constituent institutions of the multicampus state university. The University of North Carolina, chartered by the N.C. General Assembly in 1789, was the first public university in the United States to open and the only one to graduate students in the eighteenth century. The first class was admitted in Chapel Hill in 1795. For the next 136 years, the only campus of the University of North Carolina was at Chapel Hill.

In 1877, the NC General Assembly began sponsoring additional institutions of higher education, diverse in origin and purpose. Five were historically African American colleges, and another was founded to educate American Indians. Several were created to prepare teachers for the public schools. Others emphasized technology. One is a training conservatory in performing arts.

Created in 1932, the Consolidated University of North Carolina originally consisted of the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, North Carolina State College in Raleigh, and Women's College in Greensboro. The North Carolina General Assembly appointed a 100-member Board of Trustees as its governing body. In 1969, the system expanded to include Wilmington College, which became UNC Wilmington.

William C. Friday was president of the Consolidated University from 1956-1972 and first president of the University of North Carolina System from 1972-1987. In 1972, the UNC Board of Governors--consisting of 32 members elected by the NC General Assembly--replaced the multicampus Board of Trustees. Constituent campuses, including UNC Wilmington, re-established institutional Boards of Trustees. The Board of Governors serves as the University of North Carolina's policy-making body. The Board provides oversight, elects the president, and selects chancellors to head individual campuses based on the president's nomination. The UNC System Office houses the president and senior staff responsible for executing the Board of Governors' policies.


17.5 Linear Feet (13 bankers boxes and 3 small boxes)


This record group is organized into the following 15 topical sub-groups:

Sub-Group 01. Board of Trustees of the Consolidated University of North Carolina meeting files, 1969-1972

Sub-Group 02. Board of Governors of the University of North Carolina System general meeting files, 1978-2003

Sub-Group 03. University of North Carolina System committee files, 1970-2004

Sub-Group 04. Administrative memoranda, 1972-2001

Sub-Group 05. Legal materials, 1975-1990

Sub-Group 06. Office of William C. Friday files, 1969-1986

Sub-Group 07. Office of C. D. Spangler files, 1986-1997

Sub-Group 08. Office of Molly Corbett Broad files, 1997-2006

Sub-Group 09. Office of Erskine B. Bowles files, 2006-2009

Sub-Group 10. Office of Thomas W. Ross files, 2010-2012

Sub-Group 11. Office of Margaret Spellings files, 2018

Sub-Group 12. University of North Carolina System faculty awards: UNCW nomination files, 1990-2018

Sub-Group 13. University of North Carolina System newsletters, 1977-2000

Sub-Group 14. News clippings, 1972-2002

Sub-Group 15. Photographs, 1968-2008

Acquisition Information

The files in this record group are from various university offices at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Contact the University Archives for detailed acquisition information.


Additions to the record group: 27 January, 2020

Separated Materials

Photographs, videorecordings, optical media, oversize, and published materials are stored separately from paper files.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Adina Riggins with the assistance of university students Alexandra Ingman, Miranda Nickelston, and Miranda Sprouse.

Guide to the Records of the University of North Carolina System
Adina Riggins
2019 April 1
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
Additions to finding aid: 27 January, 2020

Repository Details

Part of the University Archives Repository