Med Society sees slippery slope if blacks admitted

“The North Carolina Medical Society overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to take in Negro doctors. Argued Dr. Millard Hill of Raleigh: as members, they would ‘seek to capitalize on their privileges and try to mix socially with whites.’ “
– From Time magazine,  May 17, 1954

Oops! ‘What I supposed to be solid’… wasn’t

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….

“The next instant I found myself grasping at railing and stonework and heard the broken glass of the skylight ring sharply on the stone floor of the rotunda one hundred feet below me.”

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.”

Deadline deal averts link dump shutdown

— 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.

— Bellum Charleston’s elite retreat. (Are East Flat Rock, Savannah and the Masters  “actually part of Charleston”? )

— Great-grandpa sends a Tweet from Gettysburg.

— Number of Raleigh women listed in 1860 census as prostitutes: 46

Raleigh women challenge pols, claim rights

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.

Link dump arrives in egg, Miscellany fans go gaga

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.”

— Would historic Skyco be better remembered if it didn’t have to share its name with a mobile home builder, a paragliding outfitter and a supplier of knuckle boom grapple trucks?

Did Jefferson put ‘miniskirt’ on Washington?

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.”

North Carolina follows Jefferson’s advice, and the Canova statue will be a source of state pride until it is crushed in the Capitol fire of 1831.

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.

Hey, Texas, it’s not just our BBQ that’s better

“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….

“On a preview visit Art News Editor Alfred Frankfurter pronounced the results to date ‘the only important public collection south of Richmond and east of the Pacific.’ Said he: ‘Those Texans, who boast about giving away Cadillacs as souvenirs at dinner, had better sit up and take notice. They’ve nothing to match it.’ “
— From Time magazine, April 9, 1956
And this just in: architectural kudos for the West Building’s “gently luminous setting.”

The rise and long, hard fall of muscadine wine

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.

Grab a shovel, everybody — you too, Raleigh

On this day in 1913: As part of his proclaimed Good Roads Days, Gov. Locke Craig, clad in overalls, takes up a shovel on a Buncombe County work crew.

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.

What NC cities boroughed from NYC

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.