Supporters of Durham 150: Issue #13Posted on July 30, 2019
Welcome to the Supporters of Durham 150 newsletter, designed to keep those interested in Durham’s sesquicentennial updated on all the planning activities surrounding the yearlong commemoration.
Save the Date(s)!We’re more than halfway through Durham’s sesquicentennial year and are well on our way to highlighting more than 150 anniversary-related events before the year concludes. There are two upcoming events that the Durham 150 Convening Committee and others are especially involved in planning: Fiesta! and the Durham 150 Closing Ceremony Presented by Duke University & Duke Health. We will share more details with you about each event in the coming weeks, but wanted to provide a sneak peek now — and make sure these dates are saved on your calendar.
Fiesta!, a Durham 150 signature event sponsored by Durham Technical Community College and the Law Offices of James Scott Farrin, will be held at 3-7 p.m at the Carolina Theatre on September 15. It will be a celebration of the vibrant Hispanic community in Durham, and will include a documentary showing, dance performances, and vendors. Tickets to the event will be free.
The Durham 150 Closing Ceremony Presented by Duke University & Duke Health will take place on November 2 from 7:30-10 p.m. at DPAC, the Durham Performing Arts Center. The culminating event of Durham 150 will spotlight those nominated by the Sesquicentennial Honors Commission in a report prepared for City Council earlier this year, as well as key moments in Durham’s history over the last 150+ years. More information about tickets will be announced next month.
Got Your Durham 150 Merch?We love seeing folks around town in Durham 150 gear! If you haven’t gotten yours yet, we have t-shirts, hats, magnets, and stickers available at www.Durham150.org/store. If you’re a retailer interested in carrying Durham 150 merchandise, let us know.Taking a Moment to Thank our SponsorsEarlier this month, we thanked a list of Durham 150 Investors (businesses and individuals that have already contributed to the official sesquicentennial commemoration). We also have a great list of Durham 150 Advocates to thank for allowing us to work toward our mission.
- UDI Community Development Corporation
- Veritas Collaborative
- Emily Busse Bragg
- Alston Gardner
- Rick and Jane Adams
- Carlton Wilson
- Nick and Jennifer TennysonAs we recognize Durham’s past, present, and future with a year of events, activities, and community engagement, we thank all that have already contributed to Durham 150 this year.
Find a full list of Durham 150 sponsors on our website.
Upcoming Durham 150 EventsThere are a host of significant events coming up for people of all ages and walks of life. Many are free and designed to help us all learn more about Durham’s past, present, and future. Find a searchable listing of all events here.
Duke Homestead Vintage Baseball Game
August 3, 2019
$5, children under four free
Durham Bulls Athletic Park
409 Blackwell St., Durham, NC 27701
Noche de Ferias
August 6, 2019
El Centro Hispano
2000 Chapel Hill Rd. #26a, Durham, NC 27707
The Durham College Legacy and Reunion
Durham 150 Grantee
August 9-11, 2019
$125 per person through Tuesday, July 31, 2019; Late and on-site registration is $135 per person
Durham Marriott City Center
201 Foster St., Durham, NC 27701
S.E. Rochelle Exhibit Opening
August 9, 2019
Museum of Durham History
500 W. Main St., Durham, NC 27701
Celebrate World Relief Durham’s New Legal Clinic
August 16, 2019
John O’Daniel Exchange Building
801 Gilbert Street, Durham, NC 27701
Rock The Park Movie: Throwback Night — “Bull Durham”
August 17, 2019
Durham Central Park
501 Foster St., Durham, North Carolina 27701
Appetites and Desires: Audio Under The Stars
Durham 150 Grantee
August 23, 2019
Center for Documentary Studies
1317 W. Pettigrew St., Durham, NC 27705
Harvest and Hornworm Festival
August 24, 2019
10 a.m-3 p.m.
Duke Homestead State Historic Site
2828 Duke Homestead Rd., Durham, NC 27705
Durham 150 Grantee
August 24, 2019
10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Meet at the Carroll Street/ Parking Lot of Morehead Avenue Baptist Church and The Community Park
Unveiling of the Algonquin Tennis Club Historic MarkerOn August 15 at 6:30 p.m., a new historic marker will be unveiled at the W.D. Hill Center in honor of the historic Algonquin Tennis Club. The club, established in 1922, gave African Americans a place to play the game. The Algonquin Tennis and Social Club, as many called it, became the place where leaders of Black Wall Street and their families and friends could relax, socialize and play tennis. It is also where the Durham Committee on Negro Affairs was formed in 1935. Following the historic marker unveiling, there will be a historical program at 7 p.m. that will highlight the athletic, social and political significance of the Algonquin.
Historical NoteScalawag Magazine recently published a feature on John Merrick in advance of the 100th anniversary of his death on August 6, 1919. Merrick, C.C. Spaulding and Richard Fitzgerald were nominated by the Sesquicentennial Honors Commission for their significant contributions as pioneer leaders and entrepreneurs in the City of Durham.
As told by the Honors Commission’s report, Merrick was born enslaved in Eastern North Carolina and moved to Raleigh when he was 18 to be a brick mason. He was persuaded by members of the Duke Family to move to Durham a few years later. In 1898, he co-founded the North Carolina Mutual and Provident Association with six other African American men. He became the first president of what would become the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company, also known as the “largest Negro life insurance company in the world.” He also founded and served as president of the Mechanics and Farmers Bank, the Durham Drug Company, the Durham Negro Observer, Lincoln Hospital, present-day North Carolina Central University, and the Merrick-Moore-Spaulding Land Company.
C.C. Spaulding came to Durham in 1896 at the urging of his uncle Dr. Aaron Moore (featured in our last newsletter’s historical note). He worked his way up through North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance beginning in 1900 and served as president from 1923 to 1952. He also served as the president of the Mechanics and Farmers Bank and Mutual Savings and Loan Association. He was also the founder of the Durham Committee on Negro Affairs as well as present-day North Carolina Central University.
Richard Fitzgerald began his career in the Piedmont as an innovative brickmaker and became a self-made millionaire, building lasting institutions like Erwin Mill and St. Joseph AME while churning out 30,000 bricks a day. Fitzgerald started Coleman Manufacturing Company (the first cotton mill in the United States built, owned and operated by blacks), as well as Durham Real Estate, Mercantile, and Manufacturing Company. He also served as treasurer of Lincoln Hospital, co-owner of Durham Drug Company, and was the founder and first president of Mechanics and Farmers Bank.
Do you have a friend, family member or colleague who would be interested in receiving these Durham 150 newsletters? Let them know they can subscribe to updates on Durham 150 here.Sincerely,
Shelly Green & Patrick Mucklow
Co-Chairs, Durham 150