On this day in 1865: As Raleigh awaits Sherman, Union Lt. George Round is sent ahead to set up a Signal Corps flag station. Scaling the eerily empty Capitol, Round makes a crucial misstep: “I … leaped gently to what I supposed to be the solid top of the dome,” he will write later. “I heard a sudden crash, and the top of the dome gave way beneath my feet. I had actually jumped into the circular glass skylight….
Round’s fall is broken by a wire net, and he survives with only “a terrible fright, a lacerated wrist and, on the next day, a lame shoulder.”
— Reconsidering North Carolina’s oldest known landscape photo.
— “It certainly would be nice to have another Ohio native become part of our basketball program here at Chapel Hill.”
— Great-grandpa sends a Tweet from Gettysburg.
— Number of Raleigh women listed in 1860 census as prostitutes: 46
On this day in 1920: Without warning, women show up at all Democratic precinct meetings in Raleigh and read statements demanding they be allowed to participate. Elsie Riddick, assistant executive secretary to the N.C. Corporation Commission, contends that since 35 states have already ratified the Nineteenth Amendment “and it is a certainty that we will vote in the next election . . . we have [the] right, therefore, to vote in this precinct meeting — just as any young man would who will become 21 years old prior to the next election.”
“The unexpectedness of the stroke gave the male Democrats no time to formulate any answers. . . . ” according to The News & Observer, and the women are allowed to vote.
— Break-in at Central Prison!
— Muskogee, Paducah or Chapel Hill?
— Reel-to-reel of MLK in Winston-Salem makes digital debut.
— Sorry, just couldn’t resist writing “Dateline: Spearfish.”
On this day in 1816: Responding to a letter from Sen. Nathaniel Macon of North Carolina, Thomas Jefferson offers his opinion “On the subject of the statue of George Washington, which the legislature of North Carolina has ordered to be procured, and set up in their Capitol.”
Jefferson, retired at Monticello at age 73, proposes the state use an Italian sculptor, Antonio Canova, and Italian stone, Carrara marble. Washington, he adds, should be depicted in Roman costume: “I am sure the artist, and every person of taste in Europe would be for the Roman. . . Our boots and regimentals have a very puny effect.”
In 1970, following heated debate in the General Assembly over the appropriateness of Washington’s “miniskirt,” a privately financed copy of the statue is installed in the Capitol.
“This week in Raleigh, N.C. the newest major art museum in the U.S., and the first to have a collection fully subsidized by state funds, opens its doors with more than a million dollars’ worth of paintings already hanging on its walls….
More phrase-frequency charts from Google Books Ngram Reader:
— Chapel Hill vs. Raleigh and Durham
— Variety Vacationland. Tourism promotion not a priority during World War II?
— Billy Graham vs. Jim Bakker. No contest, even during the glory run of PTL.
— North Carolina vs. South Carolina. South Carolina’s spike in the early 1700s roughly coincides with its becoming a royal colony.
— muscadine wine. After 150 years out of favor — longer even than big band music! — still waiting for a comeback.
Craig’s call for two days of volunteer maintenance on the state’s dirt roads elicits mixed response. In Guilford County more than 1,000 men show up; students at State Normal and Industrial School for Girls put 400 rakes to use. At Chapel Hill, acting UNC president Edward Kidder Graham takes the lead in leveling Franklin Street. Lenoir College students, according to The Charlotte Observer’s correspondent, “livened up the occasion by giving cheer after cheer for Hickory and Governor Craig.”
In Raleigh, however, “There was practically no response on the part of citizenship. . . . ”
Pictured: From the Good Roads lobby, a gorgeously utopian pinback button.
Until recently I knew only about Charlotte’s Brooklyn neighborhood, not about Raleigh’s or Wilmington’s. Is this nomencluster anything more than coincidence? Does the name appear elsewhere in North Carolina? (If so, it avoided Michael Hill’s exhaustive expansion of the Gazetteer.)
The Brooklyn (New York) Public Library offers this entertaining look at its “Brooklyn (non New York)” files, but no mention is made of North Carolina neighborhoods.
None of these, of course, is North Carolina’s most famous Brooklyn.