UNCA — Jarrell and McGhee

UNCA- Project Contract- Benjamin Jarrell and Ashley McGhee


Our mission for the Century America site on the Great War is to research and exhibit both an archival collection, as well as a narrative of the homefront experience in Buncombe County, North Carolina, and the surrounding areas.  Our website will function both as an educational exhibit and an archival record, containing digitized primary and secondary source materials.  We intend for our website to not only be utilized by academics and historians, but also to be a website that educators across the K-12 and higher learning would be able to use.  We also intend for the website to be accessible to those with an interest in this particular time period in this area of the country, particularly those living in this area.

This project is part of a course funded by COPLAC which includes several other schools across the country and in Canada, with the objective of memorializing the events surrounding the Great War period and especially related to the local, homefront experience.  Our mission is to adequately document this time period through the use of both an archive, as well as a narrative, in order to create a digital exhibition of the experience of Western North Carolina in the Great War years.


To create our website, we will use WordPress for its continued compatibility with other COPLAC sites.  The theme we are planning to use is called “Fifteen.”  This theme has options for multiple documents and photographs, and has an aesthetically pleasing layout.  Our home page will be a generalized introduction to what our project is about, including a mission statement as to why this time period was so important to this part of the country.  The homepage will have a visually stimulating background of some iconic images from both the city and the rural area of Buncombe County and upon entering the website the visitor will have headings for both the Urban and Rural sections of the county.

There will be three tabs that contain research for the urban, public side of Asheville.  They are (untitled so far): (1) a Google Map, with photos and descriptions of key buildings and locations within the city, as they appeared during the Great War, (2) a section focusing on the uniqueness of Asheville as a resort destination, both as a retreat from the war and as a health center, and finally the bulk of my research will be in the form of (3) a timeline, connecting the newspaper clippings collected digitally, and those materially from both Pack Library downtown and the UNCA Special Collections.  The last section will connect to the first two when there is information crossover: meaning ‘E.W. Grove’ might be mentioned in an article, and clicking the link will take you to the bio section.  There will be smaller collections within the three tabs, such as a collection of ‘War Ads,’ pulled from local papers, using the War as their theme.


3.22.15- Complete all research, finalize images and narratives to be included in final site

3.26.15- All images and documents to be used for site will be collected and digitized

3.29.15- All website text and narratives will be completed

3.31.15- Completed draft of website will be published

4.7.15- 4.21.15 Same as partner (Ashley)

The Rural headings will be as follows: Wartime Economy (This will include farms, small town centers, moonshining, and the railroad), Religion, The Working Class (Especially women during the wartime), Rural Color, and the Flood of 1916.  After clicking on one of these headings, the visitor will be presented with a narrative, along with images of various newspaper articles, ledgers/records, diaries/letters/journal entries, a possible timeline (for which I would use the TimelineJS tool), and photographs.  For example, the Flood of 1916 will have possible photographs and newspaper clippings of the occurrence, as well as a narrative to let the visitor know the background story.


Bibliography- We plan to place a bibliography/notes section at the end of each narrative/photographs, similar to the Montevallo website from last year.



  • March 3: Install WordPress theme, check with UNCA New Media Center to see if they are available to assist with any technical problems
  • March 10: Complete all research, finalize images and narratives to be included in final site and create an outline to finalize layout and design of site
  • March 17: All images and documents to be used for site will be collected and digitized
  • March 24: All website text and narratives will be completed- Ben will complete the “Urban” options and Ashley will complete the “Rural” options, both students will work on the home page (*See Distribution of Labor for additional comments)
  • March 31: Completed draft of website will be published
  • April 7: Ask Century America students, family and friends to test functionality of website
  • April 14: Complete any required changes, finalize website
  • April 21: Completed website turned in for review and grading

Distribution of Labor:

Simply put, Benjamin will be responsible for scanning, configuring, and completing narratives for the “Urban” options, and Ashley will be responsible for the “Rural” options.  Both will work on the configuration for the initial home page.

There will be no weekly “set” meetings, but meetings will take place at the discretion of schedules.  Due to current schedules, it will be likely that a Tuesday meeting will begin to happen fairly regularly, and also in light of the fact that all deadline dates are set on Tuesdays each week.


Advertising and Marketing:

  • Once the website begins to reach a finalized state, information will be shared about the site and the project on the social media platform of Facebook, including the Facebook page for UNCA.
  • An attempt will be made to contact the local regional paper, The Asheville Citizen-Times, to inform them of the project, and possibly the local news station, WLOS.


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