“Once again, Maine Gov. Paul LePage is in trouble, and race is at the heart of the matter…. Talk is once again circulating about removing the governor from office.
“Over the course of American history, there have been 17 instances of gubernatorial impeachment, with eight convictions resulting. The last governor to be impeached [was] Rod Blagojevich of Illinois….
“While the power of impeachment has been a feature of state constitutions since the founding of the republic, it was never used until the Civil War….
“The first conviction of an impeached governor occurred in the post-Civil War period, when North Carolina’s Democratic legislature convicted Republican William Holden for using martial law to protect the rights of freed slaves against white racial terrorists. (Back then, the Republicans were the party of civil rights.) This era, during which Southern white supremacists engaged in a political insurgency against the victorious Union government for control of Reconstruction in the defeated Confederate states, witnessed nearly half of all gubernatorial impeachments in American history….”
— From “A LePage impeachment would repeat — and reverse — impeachment’s race-based history” by Patrick Rael in the Bangor Daily News (Aug. 29)
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.
On this day in 1948: Former vice president Henry Wallace, now presidential candidate of the left-leaning Progressive Party, attends its state convention in Durham. The convention nearly turns into a riot as anti-Wallace demonstrators march with signs, explode firecrackers and pelt Wallace with eggs.
Running against Harry Truman, Thomas Dewey and Dixiecrat Strom Thurmond, Wallace fares poorly in North Carolina and everywhere else; he receives no electoral votes.
[Wallace’s unlikely North Carolina ally.]
Happy 100th birthday to the National Park Service (NPS)!
On August 25, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson signed the National Park Service Organic Act establishing the NPS as an agency within the U.S. Department of the Interior to coordinate administration of the then 37 national parks and monuments. Today the NPS oversees 412 parks, monuments, and other conservation and historic properties.
In 1926, 10 years after establishment of the NPS, creation of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was authorized. Covering 522,427 acres, almost evenly divided between the states of North Carolina and Tennessee, the park is today the most visited of the 59 national parks, attracting over 9 million visitors annually. More than 1,660 kinds of flowering plants can be found along its more than 800 miles of tended trails.
Here are a few postcards from the North Carolina Collection’s postcards collection showing the beauty and wonder of this special place:
In 1916, Mount Mitchell became North Carolina’s first state park. This year, the North Carolina Department of Natural and Cultural Resources celebrates the centennial of the state park system, which now encompasses dozens of parks and recreation areas.
Centennial events have been happening at parks across the state throughout the year. The signature centennial event will be held this Saturday at Mount Mitchell State Park — and the North Carolina Collection will be there!
We’ll host a special display dedicated to the mountain’s namesake, Elisha Mitchell, showcasing Mitchell’s pocket watch.
For more on the significance of the pocket watch in Mitchell’s life and death, read our June Artifact of the Month post.
We’re looking forward to celebrating this milestone in our state’s history. If you’ll be nearby, we’d love to see you there!
“EDENTON — About 40 young women came out to Swain Auditorium in response to an open casting call to portray on camera Edenton-born Harriet Jacobs.
“Stacey Harkless, the film’s producer, said she would love to see a three-night miniseries.
“Much of the story [will be filmed] in Edenton, because the town is an important part of the story, and it would be expensive to recreate its locations elsewhere.
“Harkless said the film will focus on the role faith plays in Jacobs’ story and will not include graphic depictions of violence or sex.
“Harkless said she read ‘Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl’ and was struck by its emotional power. It was difficult to believe, she said, that the book had not already been adapted as a movie. [It does have a history as a stage production.]
“Harkless stressed that the film was not envisioned as a ‘whip and chains epic’: ‘It’s a Horatio Alger story It started in slavery, but it ended with her becoming one of the most incredible people on the planet.’”
— From “Casting call busy for movie on Jacobs” by Reggie Ponder at the Chowan Herald (Aug. 21)
As more than 29,000 students return to Carolina’s campus, we welcome them back with our August Artifacts of the Month, a menu board and stool from the Daily Grind Café. The Daily Grind served coffee in a small, lively space adjacent to UNC’s Student Stores for more than twenty-two years. When news broke at the end of last school year that the Café would close in the summer of 2016, students, faculty, and staff mourned the loss of a campus institution.
These items serve as a reminder of just how fun and innovative The Daily Grind was. For over two decades, the cafe provided students with freshly brewed, locally roasted coffee in a multitude of ways — like their Crème Brulee and Snickerdoodle “Magical Mochas,” as seen on this menu board.
One-of-a-kind painted stools like this one offered the perfect perch for employees of the one-of-a-kind café, where students met up with friends, chatted with professors, or just took a break as they looked out into the Pit.
After Barnes and Noble assumed management of the Student Stores, the Daily Grind Café moved out of its location at the heart of campus. Yet students should have no fear! The Friends Café at the Health Sciences Library still serves the same “mean beans” as its sister café, with an extensive espresso drink list and fresh treats served every weekday.
The North Carolina Collection Gallery is honored to preserve these and other Daily Grind artifacts as a reminder of a beloved campus café. Getting coffee at the Daily Grind was more than a quick break — it was a UNC tradition.
For more Carolina traditions, both old and new, visit the exhibit Classic Carolina: Traditions Then and Now in the Gallery. The exhibit, dedicated to all of our new Tar Heels, shares Carolina food, athletic, and dorm traditions from the mid-twentieth century.
“The founders who crafted the original state governments… thought it was a good idea for ministers to stay out of politics.
“The state constitutions of North Carolina (1776), New York (1777), Georgia (1777), South Carolina (1778), Delaware (1792),Tennessee (1796), Maryland (1799), and Kentucky (1799) all banned clergymen from running for office.
“The 1776 North Carolina Constitution states that ‘no clergyman, or preacher of the gospel of any denomination, shall be capable of being a member of either the Senate, House of Commons, or Council of State, while he continues in the exercise of the pastoral function.’ ”
— From “Why the Founding Fathers wanted to keep ministers from public office” by at Religion News Service (Aug. 15)
There may be a month left to go this solar summer, but the summer travel season will be wrapping up between now and Labor Day. For those whose oceanside vacation still awaits, you will probably notice that the beach fashion scene has changed a wee bit in the past 110 years! I doubt any records would have been broken at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro with athletes wearing these anti-hydrodynamical outfits.
On this day in 1943: Betty Smith’s “A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” destined to become one of the best-selling novels of all time, hits bookstore shelves across the state.
The author is a former Brooklyn telephone operator who arrived in Chapel Hill on a bus with her two young daughters in 1938. She came only to study play writing at the university but makes Chapel Hill her home.
“A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,” a warm, coming-of-age story set in a city slum, was rejected by 12 publishing houses before being accepted by Harper and Bros. It will also be made into a movie and a Broadway play.
Although she will die in a Connecticut convalescent home in 1972, Betty Smith returns to be buried in the Chapel Hill Cemetery.
[Betty Smith, inventor of the “beat cop”?]