This oak paddle was used for corporal punishment by an unnamed principal at St. Stephens Elementary School (1933-2001) in Hickory, likely in the 1960s. Seventeen inches long with three drilled holes to reduce drag and thus increase sting. Shows use.
Previous owner believed it had been crafted from schoolroom furniture made by Southern Chair of Hickory, once billed as the world’s largest manufacturer of institutional furniture but later swallowed by Drexel Heritage and subsequent buyers.
“Billy Graham may have paved the way for rock concerts at Ericsson [now Bank of America] Stadium.
“After dismantling equipment for Graham’s Carolinas crusade, officials found the field in good condition, alleviating a major concern about holding nonfootball events at the stadium….
“For organizers, the extra time and money it took to convert Ericsson was well worth it….In three offerings the crusade brought in more than $800,000, and 305,400 people attended the four-day crusade.”
— From “Stadium held up well under crusade” by Ky Henderson in the Charlotte Observer (Oct. 1, 1996)
“The Rhododendron Festival was started in June 1928 by the Chamber of Commerce to bring more tourism to Asheville and lasted until 1942 when the U.S. went to war. At its height it was a weeklong event featuring a parade every day, beauty pageants and upscale balls….
“It was also designed to showcase the rich traditions of southern Appalachia…. Bascom Lamar Lunsford of Mars Hill was the principal organizer of the Appalachian music events and successfully spun off the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival….
“The festival crowned a King and Queen of Rhododendron, a mythical fairyland built in the baseball diamond at McCormick Field…. Dogs and livestock were also paraded around and judged….”
— From “The Rhododendron Festival” by Cliff Mori at brew-ed.com
Asheville historian Nan Chase notes that the festival “started during a period people were so destitute that men were hunting squirrels in town for food and picking up coal along the railroad tracks to sell. I call it a ‘pageant of hope.’ “
Chase also happened onto an early mention of Billie Burke – later Glinda the Good Witch in “The Wizard of Oz” — tap-dancing at a festival pageant atop the Grove Arcade.
These two pinbacks bookend the political career (so far) of Pat McCrory. In 1989 as a Republican newcomer he was elected to an at-large seat on Charlotte City Council, which led first to 14 years as mayor and then to a single, HB2-marred term as governor.