North Carolina history


The Boone Tract in Davie County

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 21, 2014 – On February 21, 1764, famed frontiersman Daniel Boone sold land near what is now Mocksville to settle debts before exploring westward. Aaron Van Cleave, a former ship’s captain from New York, paid Boone “80 pounds Proclamation money of the state of North Carolina” for […]


Burning of Winton by Union Troops, 1862

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 20, 2014 – On February 20, 1862, Union troops burned Winton, a small village in Hertford County overlooking the Chowan River. The previous day, six gunboats transporting soldiers from New York and Rhode Island steamed up river to Winton, intent on destroying a railroad bridge. Confederate soldiers […]


Poole Bill and Anti-Evolution Fervor

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 19, 2014 – On February 19, 1925, the North Carolina House defeated the Poole anti-evolution resolution. The resolution, introduced by D. Scott Poole of Hoke County, proposed that it was harmful to the welfare of the citizens for “Darwinism or any other evolutionary hypotheses” to be taught […]


“Witlings Defame Her”: William Gaston and “The Old North State”

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 18, 2014 – On February 18, 1927, the General Assembly adopted “The Old North State” as North Carolina’s official state song. State Supreme Court Justice William Joseph Gaston of New Bern penned the song’s patriotic lyrics in the 1830s, when North Carolina was lagging economically behind its […]


Jeffrey MacDonald and the 1970 Fort Bragg Murders

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 17, 2014 – On February 17, 1970, Green Beret surgeon Captain Jeffrey MacDonald called the Fort Bragg military police. When they got to his apartment, the police found MacDonald injured and unconscious and his wife Colette, and their two daughters, Kimberly and Kristen, murdered. Once revived by […]


The Lowrie Gang of Robeson County, Agents of Vengeance

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 16, 2014 – On February 16, 1872, the infamous Lowrie Gang committed its last robbery. The daring raid netted $28,000. Days later, Henry Berry Lowrie, the leader of the band, disappeared and launched himself into North Carolina legend. During the Civil War, Lowrie and his brothers—all Lumbee Indians—hid out […]


Fort Macon Garrisoned for Spanish-American War

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 15, 2014 – On February 15, 1898, Charles L. Abernathy, editor of the Beaufort Herald-Dispatch, wrote to U. S. Senator Marion Butler to point out that North Carolina’s Fort Macon was “in a dilapidated condition with a lone sentry in charge of it.” “In the event of a naval engagement, [it] […]


Maceo Parker of Kinston Brought the Funk

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 14, 2014 – On February 14, 1943, saxophonist Maceo Parker was born in Kinston. Perhaps best known for his work with James Brown, his percussive rhythmic style brought funk to the soul music of the James Brown Band. For nearly 20 years, Brown’s call “Maceo, I want […]


Blind Boy Fuller of Durham, Blues Master

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 13, 2014 – On February 13, 1941, Piedmont Blues musician “Blind Boy Fuller” died in Durham. Fuller was famous for playing a steel-bodied National guitar that was a natural resonator before amplification. Along with Reverend Gary Davis, Fuller dominated the Bull City’s blues scene, attracting and influencing […]


Hinton James: First Student at University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill

RALEIGH, NC Feb. 12, 2014 – On February 12, 1795, Hinton James became the first student to enter the University of North Carolina. James, who had walked to Chapel Hill from his home in New Hanover County, was the only student for the first two weeks of the school year. […]