We are a service branch of the Office of Archives and History in the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, offering professional expertise in historic resource management.
Our office was established to serve the western region of the state and was officially opened on September 4, 1978. We are located at 176 Riceville Road, in the former VA Hospital "Building 13," a contributing property in the Oteen Veterans Administration Hospital National Register Historic District in Asheville.
Use the links to the right under "Inside the Western Office" for more information on our services, and click here for directions.
In addition to administrative and technical staff, the office includes representatives from the Historic Preservation Office, Archives and Records Section and Office of State Archaeology.
Photography Exhibit on Child Labor in North Carolina Opens June 23
Peering from across a century, many children look older than their years. They are captured in the photographs of Lewis Hines in the mill villages of North Carolina. The images in the exhibit, The Photography of Lewis Hine: Exposing Child Labor in North Carolina, 1908-1918, on loan from the N.C. Museum of History, will be shown at the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources Western Office June 23 to Oct. 3, Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and in special evening and Saturday programs.
Hine captured the harsh realities of life for the young textile workers, showing girls operating warping machines and boys covered in lint after long hours as doffers and sweepers in a Hickory mill. In 1908 the National Child Labor Committee (NCLC) hired photographer Lewis Hine to document the horrendous working conditions of young workers across the United States. That same year he began visiting North Carolina’s textile mills where about a quarter of all workers were under age 16.
His photos began to be published within months and appeared in magazines and on posters the NCLC displayed at conferences, legislative hearings and other gatherings. In 1910 North Carolina strengthened its child labor laws and the first Federal child labor laws were passed in 1916. However it would take another 20 years before a law banning the sale of products manufactured by child labor was passed.