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Dr. Leroy W. Upperman Family Papers

Identifier: SC-MS-205

Scope and Contents

This collection contains materials relating to the education, career, and civic activities of Dr. Leroy Upperman, including diplomas, certificates, photographs, audiovisual materials, and memorabilia. Also included are diplomas and certificates related to the education and careers of Callie Smith Upperman and Leroy Upperman, Jr. Materials date from 1934 to 1996.


  • Creation: 1934-1996


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 University of North Carolina at Wilmington, all rights reserved (subject to exceptions). Certain items in this collections were conveyed to UNCW without the accompanying copyright. Where the donor did not convey copyright to UNCW, copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Biographical Note

Leroy Wenford Upperman was born in Jersey City, New Jersey, in 1913. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree from Lincoln University (Chester County, P.A.) in 1934, then a medical degree from Howard University in 1938. From 1938 to 1939, Dr. Upperman completed an internship at Lincoln Hospital (Durham, N.C.). From 1939 to 1941, he was the house physician of Wilmington’s Community Hospital, after which he opened a private practice in general medicine and surgery. For the next fifty years, in addition to operating his private practice, Dr. Upperman was also part of the surgical staff of New Hanover Memorial Hospital (now New Hanover Regional Medical Center).

In addition to his lifetime membership in the NAACP and his role as a founding member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., Dr. Upperman served the community as a board member of the Community Boys and Girls Club, the Greater Wilmington Chamber of Commerce, the New Hanover County Human Relations Commission, the United Way, and the Wilmington Redevelopment Commission. Dr. Upperman was also an advocate for the funding of scholarships and activities to promote the academic achievement and heritage of African American students. Dr. Upperman married Callie Smith in 1947. He died February 20, 1996 in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Callie Smith was born February 11, 1924 in Columbus County, North Carolina. She graduated from Whiteville Negro High School (Whiteville, N.C.) in 1940. She attended nursing school at Lincoln Hospital School of Nursing (Durham, N.C.), graduating in 1944. She married Dr. Leroy W. Upperman in 1947 in Wilmington. Callie Smith Upperman died September 19, 1973 in Wilmington, North Carolina.

Leroy Wenford Upperman, Jr., was born in 1948 in Wilmington, North Carolina, to Dr. Leroy Upperman and Callie Smith Upperman. He received a bachelor’s degree and Juris Doctor degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1970 and 1973, respectively. Leroy Upperman, Jr., died January 12, 1991 in Los Angeles, California.


1.3 Linear Feet (Contains 1 document box and 1 oversized box.)

Language of Materials



Collection materials have been divided according to the family member that is the subject of each item and organized into the following series: Dr. Leroy W. Upperman Papers; Callie Smith Upperman Papers; and Leroy W. Upperman, Jr., Papers.

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated by Linda Upperman Smith at an unknown date.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Caroline Waller in the Spring of 2021.

Dr. Leroy W. Upperman Family Papers
Caroline Waller
2021 January 19
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Randall Library Special Collections Repository