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Norman Pendergraft Papers

Title: Norman Pendergraft papers
Inclusive Dates: 1939-2012 (bulk 1976-1996)
Extent of Materials: 5 boxes (2 flat boxes, 2 Hollinger boxes, 1 0.5″ box)
Location: Cabinet 16 (box 1-4), Cabinet 11 (box 5)
Date of Accession: 2012
Donor: Norman Pendergraft
Relationship of donor or materials to the DCL/NCR
Processor: Cale McCammon
Finding Aid Updated: 10/2/2013
Subject Headings: African American art–North Carolina–Exhibitions
Art–North Carolina–Durham
Art museum directors–North Carolina–Durham
North Carolina Central University–Faculty
Theater–North Carolina–Chapel Hill
Theater–North Carolina–Durham
Scope and Content: The Norman Pendergraft papers include materials relating to the personal and occupational life of Norman Pendergraft, with a primary focus on his work promoting the North Carolina Central University Art Museum as its director from 1976 to 1996. The collection contains his newspaper and magazine publications and materials relating to the various programs and exhibitions held at the museum under his leadership. These exhibitions involve the works of Jim Moon, Geoffrey Holder, and Robert S. Duncanson, among others. Also included are personal photographs, awards, and cerificates concerning both his service as art director and his education. Personal documents concerning his travels to Europe are also included, as well as programs and reviews relating to his involvement and interest in theatrical and vocal performances. Of particular note are the collection of the periodical Art Voices, which features articles by many local writers, and Pendergraft’s own collection of books on art, many of which contain signatures and personal notes from the authors.
Related Materials:
Restrictions: The collection is open to research.
Biographical/Historical Note: A Durham native, Norman Pendergraft (b. 1934) served in the U.S. Navy from 1954 to 1958 after graduating from Durham High School. He earned his AB and MACT from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and from 1963-1965 he studied voice in Pesaro, Italy, in an attempt to make a career at opera. In 1966 he joined North Carolina Central University’s art faculty. From 1976 to 1996, he served as director of the univeristy’s art museum where he predominantly promoted the collection of art about or by African Americans. He was a correspondent for Art Voices and participated in many theatrical and vocal performances. In 1996, he was awarded the Ella Fountain Pratt Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and also the outstanding achievement award from the North Carolina Museums Council.
Condition Notes: All those articles that appear in Art Voices and that were written by Norman Pendergraft or about Durham artists have been photocopied and have been arranged in the appropriate folders of Box 1. The original issues have been retained and arranged in Box 2. For boxes 1 through 3, the order is not, in general, original to the creator.
Organization of Collection: 1. Personal Papers
2. Art Voices
3. Books, Journals, and Magazines
4. Jubilation [Norman Pendergraft's Retirement Party] and Photographs
5. Books
Container List
Box 1
1. Articles concerning art and artists 1979-1997
2. Articles concerning Pendergraft’s career 1967-2012
3. Articles concerning theatrical productions 1974-1976
4. Articles concerning vocal performances 1950-1953
5. Awards and certificates; Includes class of 1954 exercises 1948-1996
6. Church and other functions–programs; Includes 1962 UNC and 1986 NCCU commencements 1951-1993
7. Correspondence 1955-2007
8. Documents concerning studies and travels abroad 1952-1992
9. Durham High School Class of 1954 Reunion 1994-2004
10. Exhibition materials and programs 1974-1977
11. Exhibition materials and programs 1980-1984
12. Exhibition materials and programs 1986-1995
13. Miscellaneous; Includes articles on Stagville (one of the oldest houses in Durham, in which Pendergraft’s grandparents lived during WWII), a wooden nickel, an article entitled “Durham School of the Arts: A Journey from ‘Hole’ to Whole,'” and others 1939-2000
14. NCCU campus and museum board of directors directories 1996
15. Orchestra, opera and theater programs 1953-1997
16. Publications 1957-1998
Box 2
Art Voices January-December issues 1978
Art Voices January-December issues 1979
Art Voices January-December issues 1980
Art Vocies January-December issues 1981
Art Voices January/February issue 1982
Box 3
NCMC Professional Service Award 1995
American Artist October issue 1981
Art Journal Fall issue (vol. 29, no. 1) 1969
Art Journal Winter issue (vol. 35, no. 2) 1976
Art Papers November/December issue (vol. 9, no. 6) 1986
Birth of the Cool by Barkley L. Hendricks 2008
To Conserve a Legacy: African American Art from Historically Black Colleges and Universitiesby Richard J. Powell and Jack Reynolds 1999
Emergence 1978
Father and Son by Denize Lauture with illustrations by Jonathan Green 1992
Gullah Images: The Art of Jonathan Green 1996
A History of African American Artists: From 1792 to the Present by Romare Bearden and Harry Henderson 1993
The Hewitt Collection 1999
Imagery Spring issue 1985
The International Review of African American Art (vol. 11, no. 4) 1994
Struggle and Sincerity: The Visionary Art of Elizabeth Catlett 1996
Box 4
Folder titles and order are original to the creator where possible. Descriptions of photos taken from handwritten notes provided by Norman Pendergraft. These notes have been retained in their respective folders.
1. Jubilation [Norman Pendergraft's Retirement Party], 1996
2. Graduation 1986
NP028 Left to right: Vice Chancellor C. Patterson, Geoffrey Holder, Dr. Roland Buchanan
NP029 Left to right: Unknown, Bishop Desmond Tutu, Geoffrey Holder, Chancellor R. Walker
NP030 Geoffrey Holder receiving honorary degree
3. Miscellaneous, 1955-1996
NP005 Left to right: Vivian D. Hewitt and Lois M. Jones (1996)
NP006 Norman Pendergraft at the White House when the Clintons show a Henry O. Tanner piece, the first work by an African American to enter the White House collection. Left to right: Nancy Wardropper, Claude Ryals, Bruce Wardropper, Ruth Wagner, Hildagard Ryals, unknown, Norman Pendergraft (1996)
NP044 Governor Hunt and his wife receive Patricia Funderburk with Norman Pendergraft and Rebecca Wade at dinner reception (1978)
NP045 John Harrington and Mattawilda Dobbs with Norman Pendergraft (1976)
NP046 Claudia Brice, mother of Ashbel G. Brice, director and editor of Duke University Press (circa 1970)
NP051 Left to right: Larry McCollough, Norman Pendergraft, Bill Chesnutt, Dan Moore (circa 1955)
4. NCCU Art Museum
NP031 Norman Pendergraft in NYC apartment of Elizabeth Catlett and Francisco Mora (1988)
NP032 Danny Glover with Norman Pendergraft (1996)
NP033 Danny Glover with Norman Pendergraft (1996)
NP034 Dr. Maurice Alain Lesage and Dr. Jack Fullilove at the opening of Carol Henry’s exhibit (1996)
NP035 Left to right: Kathy Chapman, Nancy P. Wardropper, Elizabeth Catlett, Francisco Mora, Norman Pendergraft (1995)
NP036 Left to right: Francisco Mora, Margarot Burrough, Chancellor Chambers, Elizabeth Catlett, Norman Pendergraft, Vivian Chambers (1995)
5. NCCU Museum Tours Abroad
NP024 Italy, 1995
NP025 Italy, 1996
NP026 Egypt, 1978
6. NCCU Retirees
NP027 Front left: Phyllis Randall, unknown, Barnetta White, Glen Martin. Standing from left: George Clark, unknown, Norman Pendergraft, Chancellor Chambers, Charles Alcorn (1996)
7. NCCU Selma Burke Exhibit, 1977
NP040 Norman Pendergraft and Selma Burke
8. NCCU Spanish Club Lecture, 1967
9. NCCU’s Anything Goes
NP008 Cole Porter’s production of NCCU’s Anything Goes with Norman Pendergraft as Sir Evelyn Oakleigh (circa 1974)
10. Parents’ 65th Wedding Anniversary, 1997
NP037 Norman Pendergraft’s parents, Harvey W. Pendergraft and Essie Mae Pendergraft
NP038 Left to right: Essie Mae Pendergraft, Harvey W. Pendergraft, Harvey W. Pendergraft’s half-brother Ronald W. Pendergraft, Norman Pendergraft
11. SECCA, Winston-Salem
NP007 Left to right: Joshua Taylor, Norman Pendergraft, Jacob Lawrence, Ted Potter (circa 1980)
12. Stagville
NP041 Norman Pendergraft with historian George McDaniele at Stagville graveyard (circa 1980)
NP042 Stagville house, one of the oldest houses in Durham, in which Norman Pendergraft’s grandparents lived during WWII (1965)
13. Theatre at Sea Cruise, 2000
14. UNC’s La Traviata, 1961
NP043 The cast of La Traviata with Norman Pendergraft playing Giuseppe
Box 5
250 Years of Afro-American Art: An Anotated Bibiliography 1981
To Conserve a Legacy: American Art from Historically Black Colleges and Universities 1991
The History of Italy by Francesco Guicciardini, trans. Sidney Alexander 1999
Homecoming: The Art and Life of William H. Johnson 1969


Updated October 2, 2013