MC 00061 Guide to the Harry Kirk McGee Papers, 1957 - 1993
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McGee, Harry Kirk, 1909?-
0.5 Linear feet 1 box
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Processed by: Linda Sellars;machine-readable finding aid created by: Linda Sellars
Photocopies of certificates, clippings, and photographs dated between 1957 and 1993 documenting the career of architect Harry Kirk McGee. Most items are photocopies of clippings about award of contracts or progress of construction on projects for which McGee was the architect. Most of the projects were in Johnston County, North Carolina, and a few were in neighboring counties. They included houses, shopping centers, hospitals, schools, and other public buildings.
Harry Kirk McGee, son of Estelle Williford and William Herbert McGee, was born in about 1909 in Petersburg, Virginia. The family moved to Rocky Mount, North Carolina, where Harry McGee graduated from high school in 1926. That fall, he entered North Carolina State College of Agriculture and Engineering. In his sophomore year, he left State College and went to New York City. There he worked in the credit department of John Wannamaker and Sons during the day and at night studied designing and illustrating at the Grand Central School of Art, the Phoenix Art School and Cooper's Union. He also had lessons from Norman Rockwell and studied design under Franklin Booth.
McGee then took a job with a tobacco company and in 1935 was sent to China as a representatve of the British American Tobacco Company. He remained there for four years. While in China, he met Barbara Bernard, an American girl who had been born and reared in China, the daughter of exporter and importer, H. V. Bernard. They were married on February 13, 1939 and went to live in the United States. They had three daughters.
McGee continued to work in the tobacco industry in eastern North Carolina. In 1944, he moved to Smithfield, N.C., and was factory manager with Bright Leaf and Burley Tobacco Company, Inc. In 1955, he resigned to devote full time to work as a draftsman in an architect's office and to prepare to become an architect. He took correspondence courses and studied with tutors while designing buildings under the supervision of a licensed architect. In December 1956, at the age of 48, McGee passed the state examination for architects and in February 1957 he received his license.
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[Identification of item], Harry Kirk McGee Papers, MC 61, Special Collections Research Center, North Carolina State University Libraries, Raleigh, NC
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