Announcing completion ... of "a magnificent heritage cornucopia."



Click on a book cover to link to the UNC Press page on the book and ordering information

Link to state and county outline map showing areas covered by the three guides

The North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office and the University of North Carolina Press are pleased to announce publication in May, 2003, of A Guide to the Historic Architecture of Piedmont North Carolina by Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern. The book is the third and final volume of a remarkable historical portrait that celebrates generations of human experience as mirrored in the historic architecture of one of the nation's oldest and most complex states.

Together, the books succinctly and lucidly present over 5,000 places, with 1,200 photographs, location maps of sites in 100 counties and 51 towns and cities, and original regional maps showing historic patterns of transportation, settlement, and development. The full range of the state's architectural heritage is represented, from the simplest early houses to skyscrapers of the late 20th century. Concise, readible, and well-illustrated introductions to each region give context to individual buildings and places. Thorough indexes provide quick references to major historical themes, key examples of building types and styles, and the known works of architects and builders.
Murray's Mill, Catawba County

Biddle Hall, Johnson C. Smith
University, Charlotte
The guides distill over three decades of the collective work of staff and associates of the State Historic Preservation Office. The authors are Catherine W. Bishir and Michael T. Southern, with Jennifer F. Martin joining in the volume on Western North Carolina. All are veterans of the state's architectural survey and National Register programs. Their work draws on years of personal experience, the field work and research of many colleagues (see list of N.C. survey publications), and the contributions of scores of local historians and countless property owners.
Written to serve "as a friend might do when introducing a visitor to the state and its communities," the books are essential companions for anyone who loves or seeks to know North Carolina. Traveler, resident, teacher, student, preservationist, planner, architect, and journalist alike will benefit from the sweep of information and insight contained in these guides.

Tobacco Barns, Rockingham County

Jefferson Standard Building,

Some comments by reviewers on the individual volumes:

Lower Stone Church,
Rowan County
"Ranging from elegant mansions and sturdy mills to picturesque barns and Art Deco skyscrapers, the historic buildings of the Piedmont region tell an important chapter of North Carolina's -- and America's--story. This book is an invaluable guide, a compelling record of the people and events that shaped the region's history, and a reminder of the importance of preserving the heritage of this special place for future generations."
   Richard Moe, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation, on the Piedmont guide.

Biltmore, Buncombe County
"A magnificent heritage cornucopia which meticulously portrays the rich scope and variety of architecture characterizing western North Carolina."
   Harley E. Jolley of Mars Hill College, author of Along the Blue Ridge Parkway, on the Western guide.

Sutherland Methodist
Church, Ashe County
"I thought I knew my native Piedmont, but these words and pictures made me homesick to wander by the Yadkin and Haw and Deep and Catawba Rivers, to see how the railroads stitched the land from town to town, and to gaze across time as grist and cotton mills flourished and then perished. This is the true story of what we Tar Heels have built, and thus of who we were and are."
   Doris Betts on the Piedmont guide.

Bellemont Mill Village, Alamance County

Cherry Hill,
Warren County
"A brand-new, old-fashioned, immensely rich guide book. I've learned tons already."
   Reynolds Price on the Piedmont guide.

"As informative and entertaining a guide to the diversity and complexity of western North Carolina's geography, history, culture, and economy as we're ever likely to see."
   John C. Inscoe, author of Mountain Masters, on the Western guide.

Fontana Dam,
Graham County

Downtown Rocky Mount,
Nash/Edgecombe County
"With the Guide, all of Eastern North Carolina becomes a gigantic museum of our life and history -- and it is open, accessible and free."
   D.G. Martin, columnist, on the Eastern guide.

"An indispensable volume for resident and tourist alike, [it] is also great fun simply to read."
   Fred Chappell on the Western guide

Dormiecroft, Linville,
Avery County

Lake Mattamuskeet Pump
Station, Hyde County
"Not just the Cupola House and Tryon Palace, but tobacco barns, shotgun cabins, textile factories, and railroad stations, too. A feast of North Carolina's historic structures that will stand as a definitive source for many years."
   Roy Parker, Jr., contributing editor, Fayetteville Observer-Times, on the Eastern guide.

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The guides may also be found at many bookstores.

State Historic Preservation Office
Office of Archives and History
North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources