[Application Closed]

Southern Pines Land and Housing Trust Community History Fellowship


Amount: $5,000

Term: AY 2021-22

Eligibility: Doctoral students in humanities and humanistic social sciences enrolled in a degree program in one of sixteen departments in the College of Arts & Sciences*

Application Due: Wednesday, September 8, 2021

Supervisor: Ariadne DeGarr, SPLHT Documentarian

About the Southern Pines Land and Housing Trust

As one of the first African American towns to be independently incorporated, it is imperative to honor and uphold the historical significance of the West Southern Pines community in this region. Originally, the Southern Pines Land and Housing Trust (SPLHT) was formed in 2009 under the guidance of longtime resident, local business owner and beloved community leader, the late Southern Pines Councilman Fred Walden. Its primary purpose was to advocate and garner support for the citizens of the WSP community.

Reestablished in 2018, the new goals of the SPLHT are solidly built on the foundation of that initial vision. It continues efforts to maintain community-based traditions while creating new opportunities of economic growth for the citizens of WSP and surrounding areas. Its current and most pressing project is the reclamation/acquisition of the West Southern Pines Rosenwald School (now Southern Pines Primary School (SPPS) campus for the creation of a world-class African American heritage museum and cultural center. This center will also serve as a community learning and entrepreneurial hub that, by preserving its history and securing its future, will help revitalize this once thriving neighborhood and the families that have called it home for generations.

The Fellowship Project

The 2021-2022 SPLHT Fellow will need to don their investigator cap as they assist with the researching, gathering and organizing a century’s worth of historical data (photos, documents, and personal stories) from a time where African American history was not well documented, if at all. The Fellow will conduct most of their research and collection activities in the West Southern Pines and Southern Pines communities and the surrounding Sandhills area. Research activities will take place in archives as well as directly with community members either in-person (COVID circumstances permitting) or via phone, so access to transportation is necessary to fully collaborate with the site.

The resulting compilation will tell the story of Rosenwald schools and West Southern Pines—past to the present. This project will be a crucial building block to the curation of the planned museum’s inaugural exhibit, will help provide supporting information for grant writing endeavors and will forever show the world the excellence that is rooted in the neighborhood and citizens of West Southern Pines.

This project can be done in collaboration with our communications/social media outreach team. If time permits, the SPLHT Fellow may also assist by researching new grant opportunities, methodologies for protecting the land or strategies for developing our public outreach campaign to increase awareness and support.

*Due to COVID, in-person experience may be limited and safety measures will be taken into account when designing fellowship activities and goals.

More Information

Applicants must submit a cover letter explaining their academic background and professional qualifications, as well as their goals for professional development through this fellowship; a C.V.; and a letter of support from an advisor in their department or their Director of Graduate Studies. The completed application  should be submitted to the HPG website no later than the end of the day on Wednesday, September 8, 2021.

Queries which are not answered in the FAQ may be directed to Ashley Melzer, HPG Initiative Director.  Open interest meetings (at this link) will be held on Tuesday, August 24 at 4pm, Friday, August 27 at 12pm, and Wednesday,  September 1 at 5pm. Email the director to setup a different time or ask a question.

*Eligible graduate programs will be affiliated with American Studies; Anthropology; Art & Art History; Classics; Communication; Dramatic Art; English & Comparative Literature; Geography; Germanic and Slavic Languages and Literatures; History; Linguistics; Music; Philosophy; Religious Studies; Romance Studies; and Women & Gender Studies. Graduate students within the College of Arts & Sciences who are not affiliated with one of these programs, but are pursuing a course of study which makes significant use of humanities methods or content, may write to Ashley Melzer to petition for eligibility. Graduate students in programs outside of the College of Arts & Sciences are not eligible.

The Application