Road to Iron Mountain: The railroad comes to Chapel Hill

Yesterday, I was going some historical research on the Chapel Hill Iron Mountain Railroad, the original name of the rail line that ran from the Carolina campus through what is now Carrboro on to University Station between Hillsborough and Durham.

I found the original 1873 Charter, and wonderful narrative on the coming of the railroad in Kemp Plummer Battle's 1912 tome the History of the University of North Carolina. The initial 1873 attempt failed, and the 1879 legislative session rechartered the railroad with the new name "State University Railroad", in place of the earlier name "Chapel Hill Iron Mountain Railroad".

Municipal geography

[I stand corrected! See comments. The border shown is the pre-1967 line. Edits below. -RS]

Thanks to the Chapel Hill News for publishing the Hidden Voices walking tour of downtown Chapel Hill and Carrboro. In today's paper there was also a map, which they seem to have wisely chosen not to publish online, that showed the points of interest on the tour. It also showed a completely made up historic border between Chapel Hill and Carrboro, as if someone just took a ruler and made a nice straight line from North Greensboro & Pleasant to Cameron & Roberson!

Someone needs to let them know that all of Broad Street is in Carrboro, while all of Graham Street and the entire Pine Knolls neighborhood are in Chapel Hill. This is especially relevant in a discussion of the history of the area.

Book Discussion: Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond

Join our discussion of Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond. This geographer recounts why past societies have failed and what we need to do to keep our society going. The Seattle Times writes, “Diamond’s most influential gift may be his ability to write about geopolitical and environmental systems in ways that don’t just educate and provoke, but entertain.”

Book Description:

Using a vast historical and geographical perspective ranging from Easter Island and the Maya to Viking Greenland and modern Montana, Diamond traces a fundamental pattern of environmental catastrophe—one whose warning signs can be seen in our modern world and that we ignore at our peril. Blending the most recent scientific advances into a narrative that is impossible to put down, Collapse exposes the deepest mysteries of the past even as it offers hope for the future.


Tuesday, February 19, 2008 - 2:00pm to 3:00pm


Carrboro Cybrary, 100 N. Greensboro St., Carrboro

Journey of Reconciliation

[On Monday night, local activist and historian Dr. Yonni Chapman, PhD petitioned the Chapel Hill Town Council to support the Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACPs effort to have a historical marker placed at the location of the former bus station that was visited by Bayard Rustin and others during the 1947 Journey of Reconciliation, which is now known as the first freedom ride. What follows is an excerpt of his presentation (PDF). I recommend reading the proposal which has more context and details. -Ruby, OP Editor]

Journey of Reconciliation in North Carolina

The Journey of Reconciliation, later called “The First Freedom Ride,” began on April 9, 1947. It was led by the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE)’s leaders, Bayard Rustin and George Houser [who worked for the Fellowship of Reconciliation, CORE's founder]. The First Freedom Riders committed themselves and their bodies to test a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 1946 that ruled interstate Jim Crow laws on buses and trains were unconstitutional.

MLK Day events

I am filling up our calendar with all the major events related to Martin Luther King day that I can find. Do you know of others? Just go to http://orangepolitics.org/node/add/event to add it.

Tag your entry MLK Day and we'll have a nice collection of events at http://orangepolitics.org/tags/mlk-day.



Community Guidelines

By using this site, you agree to our community guidelines. Inappropriate or disruptive behavior will result in moderation or eviction.


Content license

By contributing to OrangePolitics, you agree to license your contributions under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 United States License.

Creative Commons License

Zircon - This is a contributing Drupal Theme
Design by WeebPal.