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Tar Heel Junior Historian Magazine

Tar Heel Junior Historian magazine has been around for decades—the first issue came out in 1961! The North Carolina Museum of History currently publishes this fun and fact-filled student magazine twice annually. Each issue focuses on a theme related to North Carolina history and culture.

The topic of our next Tar Heel Junior Historian magazine is “Resilience”—the ability, strength, and spirit needed to get through hard times. We’re sharing stories of North Carolinians throughout history who prevailed, despite the challenging circumstances they faced.

On the 20th anniversary of 9/11, we’re reminded of the everyday Americans who showed a special kind of resilience that day and in the weeks and months that followed. In this article from the magazine, North Carolinian Emily Cranford shares the story of her husband, Eric Cranford, who lost his life in the attack on the Pentagon that day, and how she healed following a personal and national tragedy.

The poignant article is intended for students in grades 4 through 12 as part of the Tar Heel Junior Historian Association program. But we believe adults and children alike will find solace in Emily’s story of resilience.

Library and private subscriptions are available here.

Back issues are available for purchase here.

Read more about our latest issues below! 

Tar Heel Junior Historian Magazine: Making a Living

Making a Living: North Carolina Industries Over Time

What is work? What’s a job? What does “Making a Living” really mean?

The world has changed dramatically in the last 100 years. North Carolina has grown from a more rural, agriculture-based economy to one of the fastest-growing technology centers in the country. This issue of Tar Heel Junior Historian explores the history of North Carolina industries over time: from the traditional “Big Three”—textiles, furniture, and tobacco—to newer industries like tourism, the military, and biotechnology. Other growing industries include information technology, business and financial services, nonprofit arts and culture—and more.

Beginning in 2020, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, many North Carolinians found themselves quarantined at home—and we had to find new ways to juggle work, school, and family. The economy took a hit. But computers helped many of us find new ways to keep working and learning.

How will these times change North Carolina industries in the future? What will the “Big Three” be a century from now? How will today’s young Tar Heels be “making a living” when they enter the workforce as adults—and how can we plan now for that future?

One thing we know for sure: Learning history is a big part of that story!

Tar Heel Junior Historian Magazine: Where We Live

Where We Live: Architecture and Historic Preservation

As Dorothy put it, in The Wizard of Oz, “There’s no place like home.” And as the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2019, that’s exactly where we found ourselves while working on the Fall 2020 issue of Tar Heel Junior Historian—teleworking from home! It seemed a fitting time to explore up close the homes and other buildings in our lives.

To create this issue, we partnered with the experts: architectural historians, preservationists, and restoration specialists from the North Carolina State Historic Preservation Office. In this lavishly illustrated issue, you’ll learn how to “read” a building; identify architectural details; and tell whether a house is a Queen Anne, Colonial Revival, Craftsman Bungalow, or mid-century Ranch. Explore the exciting discovery of our state’s oldest dated house. And see how two historical homes were dismantled, moved, and reassembled inside the North Carolina Museum of History’s award-winning exhibition The Story of North Carolina. Plus, discover the fascinating history that can be found in the fire insurance records of the Sanborn Map Company—records you can access online today! 

They say that “Home is where the heart is.” But we historians know: Home is also where the history is!



Tar Heel Junior Historian Magazine: Find Your Voice!

Find Your Voice! NC Government: Politics and You:

Everybody learns facts about the three branches of state government in school, right? But what’s that got to do with real life? And why should kids and teens under 18—who aren’t old enough to vote—even care?

This issue answers those questions—and more. Learn about our governors—and the families (and pets) who lived with them in the Executive Mansion. Hear from reporters who cover government and politics at both the state and federal level. And celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Supreme Court of North Carolina, including an up-close look at the court’s history-making pioneers. For a fun twist on politics, students can discover the difference between regular cartoons and political cartoons. And there’s even a fun “game board” graphic to help show how a bill becomes a law.

But how do you “Find Your Voice!” and speak out—without drowning out somebody else’s voice? What if our friends and family don’t always think the same way? THJH offers history-based stories, tips, and ideas that are sure to inspire young people to get involved with the issues that they care about today.

We hope this issue will win your vote!

Tar Heel Junior Historian Magazine: She Changed the World!

She Changed the World: NC Women Making History

SHE changed the world—from North Carolina! For more years than are recorded, North Carolina women have been rocking history—each in her own way. In this issue of Tar Heel Junior Historian, we introduce some of those women who’ve made a difference. Some are well known; some are not. And that’s our point: You don’t have to be famous to make history!

Our inspiration for this issue? The 100th anniversary of America’s 19th Amendment—which finally guaranteed women the hard-won legal right to vote. What did the fight for women’s rights look like in North Carolina? THJH spills the tea—from Penelope Barker and the Edenton “tea party” and our state’s leaders in the women’s suffrage movement to women who were the “firsts” in many fields, from politics to civil rights to sports.