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Resources to help you find information about the house you live in and its previous occupants
Last Updated: Aug 3, 2012 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates
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Rowan County and its towns have many beautiful and historic homes.  If you are curious about the history of your house, the library has the resources to help you discovery its history.

Find out if your house is registered in an historic district.  Scroll through the 

North Carolina Listings in the National Register of Historic Places

Historic Places are listed alphabetically by county (pg. 70 for Rowan).  Listings with an http:// address have an online PDF of the nomination. Click to view the PDF. Text is searchable in all PDFs insofar as possible with scans made from old photocopies.  Districts have listings of individual addresses within the PDF. 



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Salisbury City Directories

Salisbury City directories can provide a great deal of information about a house and its occupants.  Some of the earlier directories indicate whether a house was rented or owned, the occupation of the owner and place of employment, spouses and children.  While the History Room has many of the directories they are brittle and fragile.  Many of them are now available through digitization.

Sanborn Maps

Salisbury 1882Sanborn maps were originally created to assist fire insurance companies to understand the risks of particular areas.  Cities were mapped all over the country.  North Carolina Sanborn maps are available through NCLIVE.  Maps include street addresses at the time of the maps origin.  Later maps will indicate changes or expansions in the city limits.  Salisbury, Spencer and Kannapolis are included in North Carolina Sanborn maps.



Additional Resources

Newspapers can also be helpful when finding information about individual houses and events at the house.  Rowan Public Library has the Salisbury Post newspaper on microfilm from 1905-the present day. 

Rowan Public Library History Room also has information on families.   Information about a particular house may be available through information associated with a family.


Subject Guide

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Gretchen Beilfuss Witt
Contact Info
Edith M. Clark History Room
Rowan Public Library
201 West Fisher Street
Salisbury NC 28144
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Books in the History Room

Cover Art
Discovering the History of Your House - Betsy J. Green
Call Number: AA INS.29 GRE
ISBN: 1891661248
Publication Date: 2002-05-01
Demonstrating how to obtain information and organize it into a lively narrative history, this practical guide helps curious homeowners chronicle the stories of their homes. Previous owners, architects, community newspapers, and local and state agencies are some of the valuable sources discussed

Cover Art
House Histories - Sally Light; Margaret Eberle (Illustrator)
Call Number: AA INS.29 LIG
ISBN: 9780961487614
Publication Date: 1989-09-01

The Architecture of Rowan County North Carolina :$ba catalogue and history of surviving 18th, 19th and early 20th century structures - Davyd Foard Hood
Call Number: NC ROW.29 HOO
Publication Date: 1983; 2000
Describing the location, architecture, condition and history of many of the older homes out in the county.


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