According to the biodiversity advocates at Project Remote, the most remote spot in North Carolina is 5.5 miles from the nearest road.
You won’t be needing that cellphone. And wear comfortable shoes.
Posted in Tar Heelia | Tagged great smoky mountains national park, project remote | Leave a Comment »
President Taft’s visit to Charlotte on May 20, 1909 not only spawned the term “Taft rain,” it also served as occasion for debut of the “Mecklenburg March.” Our colleagues at the Charlotte & Mecklenburg public library have a 2009 recording of the march online (though it doesn’t seem to working right now). No doubt many Mecklenburgers (especially those whose roots lie near the spring where the
supposed signers met) echo the sentiments found in the march’s only lyrics. This copy of the sheet music is from the papers of a proud Mecklenburger and staunch believer in the Meck Dec. We’re still looking for a little more information on Janie Alexander Patterson. We know that she was a “Miss” when she wrote this composition. And that she later became Janie Alexander Patterson Wagoner.
Posted in From the Stacks, History, Just A Bite, Memorabilia Moment, Tar Heelia, Tar Talk | 5 Comments »
On this day in 1909: President William Howard Taft visits Charlotte for Meck Dec Day and the dedication of the 12-story Realty Building, the Carolinas’ first steel-frame skyscraper.
Just as a parade past Taft’s reviewing stand ends, a sudden downpour sends thousands running for cover. The president’s speech, moved indoors, opposes partisan politics in the federal judiciary. But it will be the “Taft rain” that Charlotteans remember.
Later, at what will become Johnson C. Smith University, Taft sits in a chair custom-built to accommodate his 325 pounds and urges blacks to continue pulling themselves up by their bootstraps.
These two postcards from the collection mark Taft’s visit to Charlotte.
Posted in Memorabilia Moment, On This Day | Tagged charlotte nc, johnson c smith university, meck dec day, mecklenburg declaration of independence, nc skyscrapers, realty building, william howard taft | 1 Comment »
This New York Times story about the 48-year reign of Michael as the most popular name for boys born in New York state reminded me to check the numbers for this part of the world.
When I last compared North Carolina’s favorite baby names with those of the country as a whole, in 2009, I found that differences had steadily shrunken over half a century. In just three years that divide has become even narrower: The girls’ names making up the U.S. top five for 2012 differ only in order from the names making up the North Carolina top five. And the only exception in the boys’ top five is North Carolina parents’ preference for Elijah over Ethan.
We could hardly come closer to duplicating the national consensus if we tried. (Are we, in fact, trying?)
Footnote: After seeing a baby-names website tout North Carolina’s most historically distinctive names, Zebulon and Zeb, as among 2012′s “hottest,” I was expecting to see them rise in the national rankings. Alas, no. How hot can a name be and still not crack the top 1,000?
Posted in Tar Heelia | Tagged baby names | Leave a Comment »
“Bogart-themed bistros, taverns and bars sprouted up all across the United States, and even in Mexico. Most were unimaginative recreations of the ‘Casablanca’ set, replete with ceiling fans and waiters in rumpled white linen suits. But a few played up Humphrey’s image, among them Bogart’s American Restaurant in Raleigh, North Carolina….
“Thomasville Furniture unveiled its Bogart Collection in the late 1990s. According to the ad copy, Humphrey ‘believed that true class could not be imitated or taught.’ You either had it or you didn’t…. The collection presented close to a hundred pieces, including the Trench Coat Chair….”
– From “Tough Without a Gun: The Life and Extraordinary Afterlife of Humphrey Bogart” by Stefan Kanfer (2011)
Posted in Just A Bite | Tagged humphrey bogart, raleigh nc, stefan kanfer, thomasville furniture, tough without a gun | Leave a Comment »
Several new titles just added to “New in the North Carolina Collection.” To see the full list simply click on the link in the entry or click on the “New in the North Carolina Collection” tab at the top of the page. As always, full citations for all the new titles can be found in the University Library Catalog and they are all available for use in the Wilson Special Collections Library.
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A researcher recently shared this tidbit with us. He found it in the “Scenes” column of the Chapel Hill Weekly, 5 May 1963, page 1:
“HUGH LEFLER (the happy debunker) informing his UNC history class that Fred Hargett, not William R. Davie, headed the committee that located the site of the University, and that Davie Poplar is really a tulip tree. So, technically, according to Dr. Lefler, ‘The Davie Poplar is really the Hargett Tulip.’”
Posted in Tar Heelia, UNC History | 1 Comment »
UNC’s 2013 graduating class enjoyed a beautiful day for its commencement. In honor of those students, our artifact of the month is a commencement marshal’s baton, used at UNC’s commencement ball around 1915 or 1916.
This baton was carried by William B. Umstead, a graduate of the Class of 1916 who later went on to become a U.S. senator and the 63rd governor of North Carolina.
The baton is one of several pieces of academic regalia featured in the NCC Gallery’s Carolina Keepsakes digital collection. The collection shows some of the highlights of the Gallery’s holdings related to UNC history. From the cornerstone plaque laid when the first building was established to a caricature of the 1977 basketball team, Carolina Keepsakes tells the story of the University in artifacts from its beginning to the present day.
We hope you’ll visit the digital collection, and we hope you share our best wishes for the Class of 2013!
Posted in Artifact of the Month, Tar Heelia | Leave a Comment »