STATE: Volunteers can help N.C. State Archives transcribe historical court records

RALEIGH, N.C. — The State Archives of North Carolina is seeking volunteers who can help transcribe some of the state’s earliest court documents.

The State Archives staff has been digitizing colonial court records as part of a current grant project from the National Historical Publications & Records Commission. This program showcases some of the state’s collections while engaging the public with hands-on activities that will increase the accessibility of archival records. Volunteers can visit to begin transcribing.

These documents are among North Carolina’s earliest historical resources, and the Archives needs help deciphering them so scholars can make sense of their contents. The handwriting can be quirky and the terms antiquated, so transcribing them will be much like solving a word puzzle. There are online resources to help volunteers get started at

A portion of the records have been grouped by subject, including indentured servants, slavery, marriage, and Native Americans, allowing volunteers to delve into a specific topic.

The records can be searched online at

The N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR) is the state agency with a vision to be the leader in using the state’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina.

NCDNCR’s mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the state’s history, conserving the state’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.