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the following email was forwarded to me from the State Library--they've put some Raleigh historical materials online. Someone check out the link and let us know what they have...

In celebration of Raleigh History Month, the State Library of North Carolina and the North Carolina State Archives present their newest online, public website highlighting the early history of North Carolina

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FYI, cophead's blog uncovers remnants of the old Meredith College Bldg... two pillars that still exist along the sidewalk in front of where the bldg once stood. Now the site is a state parking lot. I think a number of trees from the photos are probably still standing in the lot (paved around). Kinda sad when I see these photos. :cry:

meredithdrvwygmap.jpg

BaptistUniversity.jpg

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Yes, it's absurd that we lost buildings like that. It went because it was perceived to look "too much like a birthday cake". It was that same Modernist crowd that is bellyaching about Bloomsbury Estates' design. They cannot stand designs from that era, and are pretty ugly about it, to be honest.

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old Meredith took up about 3/4 of the 4 acre block. There were also victorian and italianette houses along Person st behind it. I don't know whats up with Raleigh leaving pillars to remind of what was lost. At McDowell and Hillsborough a Tudor style apartment building was bulldozed for a parking lot in the 90's. The pillared fence is still there "as a reminder". I think of it as a middle finger. That particular apartment building figured into the Kennedy assassination. I think it was that Oswald made a call to that building the day after the shooting (have to freshen up on the story to be sure). Sanborn_1903_Sheet_4__Person_Jones_.pdf Here is the 1903 map of the old Meredith block.

Edited by Jones133

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Interesting stuff. I did find this reference to "The Raleigh Call" http://groverproctor.us/jfk/jfk80.html. I lik this term for it since we have "The Raleigh Letter", now "The Raleigh Call". If we can just get someone to send an interesting email from here "The Raleigh Email" would round it out nicely :) . You never know what you'll find on UP THOT.

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Seriously... what was up with the state with tearing down historically significant buildings and replacing them with cheap parking lots...

The area around the governor's mansion especially upsets me, and the parking lot caddycorner to the capital on wilmington street. These are places with great potential... ever heard of parking decks? These places could be converted into mid-rises with street-level retail, but I am sure the state has no interest in making downtown special... just so people can have convenient parking. Seriously? It makes me pretty upset. Our primary downtown streets should have NO surface parking... it would free up so much space for new development and interesting places. I think there should even be an ordinance...

Sorry about the rant, but it's pretty annoying.

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Seriously... what was up with the state with tearing down historically significant buildings and replacing them with cheap parking lots...

The area around the governor's mansion especially upsets me, and the parking lot caddycorner to the capital on wilmington street. These are places with great potential... ever heard of parking decks? These places could be converted into mid-rises with street-level retail, but I am sure the state has no interest in making downtown special... just so people can have convenient parking. Seriously? It makes me pretty upset. Our primary downtown streets should have NO surface parking... it would free up so much space for new development and interesting places. I think there should even be an ordinance...

Sorry about the rant, but it's pretty annoying.

Oh I'm right there with you. The city could solve all of it's problems and wait issues by just building 2-3 multi-story parking decks placed strategically around downtown. Then wrap each of these with condos/retail and you'd be golden. However this would make sense and we all know that the State loves to delineate from that quite a bit.

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^^^

On top of that, it would save the state tons of money in the long run. As many of the governor candidates have been saying, state government is broken.

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FYI, the Raleigh Historic Districts Commission seeks public comments on several historic properties in Raleigh that are being considered for the National Register of Historic Places. One of these (I'm familiar with) is the Good Shepard Church, which Hatem/Empire moved ~2 years ago from Morgan/McDowell St corner to East st, where it will remain. Looks like the meeting is next Tuesday evening.

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City Cemetary is across East Street from the Good Shepard Church chapel's current location. It has not been well kept as Oakwood and the cemetary south of downtown visible from South Saunders, but there is a foundation looking to adopt it. Putting it on the National Register may help get grants, etc. I walked the dog through there last night.

There is a marker near the East Street entrance that shows the location of prominent citizen's burial plots -- several early mayors, the founder of Rex Hospital, etc. It is sad that people whiz by it on New Bern Ave on their way out of downtown and don't even notice it.

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^ I guess I had good timing... the N&O has a column about the All Saints Chapel; how it was nearly demolished for a few parking spaces ( :sick: ) and how Hatem bought it for $10 and moved it to its current location on East St in order to painstakingly preserve it to the tune of $1.5M. Now, he's getting married there.

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^That's a terrific article. If this place gets a historical marker or plaque or whatever, Hatem's name deserves to be on it for the restoration & preservation of it. It's only fitting.

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Tompkins Hall, which fronts Hillsborough Street, was one of the early buildings on NC State's campus and served as the center for textiles. It contained equipment ranging from looms, dyeing, and spinning. It caught fire in 1914 and burned out leaving mostly just a charred shell. It was rebuilt largely through material donations, including the tower. The tower was originally supposed to carry a water tank, but that idea never came to fruition. By 1981 the building was renovated and the tower was decreased in size. Information and images compiled largely from the "Historical State: NCSU History" special collection archives at NC State University.

post-15616-1213863708_thumb.jpg

1901-1902: Original Construction

post-15616-1213863722_thumb.jpg

1914: The Fire

post-15616-1213863729_thumb.jpg

1914: The Aftermath

post-15616-1213863739_thumb.jpg

2005: Present Day (Photo Credit: orulz)

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Great photos, DPK! It would be great if State would restore the tower on Tompkins Hall. State has so few outstanding historical buildings, they should not miss this opportunity to recreate one that was partially lost.

Regarding Greg Hatem: He deserves every recognition he can get and more. He is Raleigh's MVC (most valuable citizen) as far as I'm concerned, for all his renovations and for the life and interest he has added to downtown.

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Great photos, DPK! It would be great if State would restore the tower on Tompkins Hall. State has so few outstanding historical buildings, they should not miss this opportunity to recreate one that was partially lost.

I just assembled the pictures and provided the subtitles, but I agree with your tower restoration opinion. :)Although after looking at the pictures for a while I kind of wonder if they shortened the tower so that the Bell Tower would be more of the focal point in the area considering both towers are/were in relatively close proximity to each other.

In this 1968 view it looks like when they rebuilt the tower after the fire, before the renovations in the 80's, it only stretched slightly above the top floor of Tompkins. Even then it's somewhat shielded by trees. So there goes my theory, lol. Tompkins and the Memorial Bell Tower can be seen in this picture in the lower-right-center.

post-15616-1213897377_thumb.jpg

1968: Aerial looking West toward NCSU

What's also interesting about this photo is that if you look further up Hillsborough Street toward the Brickyard, the NCSU library has yet to be built as what we see today (9 story goliath). For those not familiar, find the circular building near the top of the photo and go directly right. The library bookstack tower gets built there in 1971.

Edited by DPK

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Tomkins is beautiful...a textile mill just like Caraleigh, Pilot and the other mills. I like the trolley tracks in the oldest photo.

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Tomkins is beautiful...a textile mill just like Caraleigh, Pilot and the other mills. I like the trolley tracks in the oldest photo.

Other striking thing to me is how few trees there are around in that photo...campus is essentially a giant field. I know we grouse all the times about BRE (big real estate) on here, but I suspect Raleigh has a heck of a lot more trees today than it did when this photo was taken, when it was a tiny burg surrounded by acres upon acres of clear cut farmland/pasture.

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^ Wasn't the old State College campus used for WWI training or something? I know there was Camp Polk further out near the fairgrounds, but I had thought some of this land was used as well.

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Howdy All!

I just learned of this site from a friend. We both grew up in Raleigh in the Mordecai and Oakwood neighborhoods in the '40s and '50s. I realize that I'm coming to the party very late, but I believe that I can add a few morsels to the conversation. I left Raleigh in '92; so all that's happened in the intervening years is news to me.

In this thread, there was a question as to where the Sasser home is on Wake Forest Road. It is (or was?) the white frame house about third down from corner nearest the old Mary Elizabeth Hospital (later Raleigh Community) building. It sits back from the road a bit before you get to the apartments that were built in the '60's or '70s just before you get to Frank Street.

In the mid '50's the Raleigh City Limits were just past Mary Elizabeth Hospital; however the area was well developed out to the Y where Louisburg Road and Wake Forest Road split. There was a Dairy Queen in the lot formed by the split. The city limits came down Glasscock Street to Grassy Branch and followed Grassy Branch back toward Oakwood Cemetery. They fell on Brookside Drive at the point where Grassy Branch crossed coming out of Oakwood Cememtery just past the end of North Boundary Street. North Boundary was paved but pavement ended at Watauga Street (which was not paved) and Brookside Drive was gravel surfaced all the way to Wake Forest Road.

The school building on Person Street, now used as a retirement community facility, was Murphey School, named after Archibald Murphey, an early Raleigh public school teacher and administrator. Emma Conn was principal there until about 1951 or 52 when she retired only to be called in as a substitute teacher when needed. The school on Brookside Drive was named after her. Her successor was Mr. Russell Jefferson, who later was principal at other Raleigh schools. He was succeeded by Mr. Donald Weed, "The Tall Grassy Kind", who came to Murphey as principal in about 1954. He actually introduced himself with the quoted modifier. He stood well over 6 feet and was thin.

Hugh Morson graduated its last high school class in 1955; thereafter it was junior high school until its demise. I was class president of the 9th grade (and of the Jr. Honor Society) there in 1956-57. The location of Hugh Morson High School has been resolved by others here. All nine of us siblings attended that school at one time or another in its history. My brother and another classmate of his from the Class of '53 retrieved the gargoyles and brick and built the memorial that stands as noted in another post. They actually did all this work by their own hands, not caused it to be built.

The discussion of Falls of Neuse Road and Bland Road: Although I don't recall when the roads were paved, I do recall travelling on the road in front of Eastgate SC when it was gravel. Of course, the whole area was wooded then. Falls of Neuse turned to the left off Wake Forest Road but did not cross it. It intersected where the Bland Road cut off now exists. There was a Pure Oil station and country grocery store where the Wendy's now stands.

I have many fond memories of growing up in Oakwood. You might guess by my username where I lived from birth to age 22. I knew Raleigh when one could walk across it in an afternoon and it was safe for 6-year old children to go downtown alone and marvel at all the magical things in the five and dime stores or Briggs Hardware or attend the western flicks and serials at the Capitol or Wake theater on Saturday morning for 7 cents. For that you got a double feature, cartoons, newsreels, and a serial adventure chapter. Popcorn and drink were a nickel each. Busfare was also a nickel.

I will be happy to try to answer questions about Raleigh of that period through 1990. I can call on the collective memory of a rather large family, too. Just email me at [email protected] and put "Raleigh" somewhere in the subject line.\

Edited by 527NEastSt

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Wow, thanks for the wonderful first post 527NEastSt and welcome to Urban Planet. I'm sure you'll field a lot of questions on here. :)

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