Remembering The Old Winston-Salem Radar Station

Union Cross Park is a nice park. It has a walking/jogging path, softball fields, as well as tennis courts and a basketball court. It has a picnic shelter for community get-togethers and a playground for kids.

Everyone knows that Union Cross Park was a former radar base, but few know much about the specifics of the old radar base.

Union Cross Park should have an educational element to it. It’s strange to have a park on a decommissioned military base … Read the rest

Remembering The Winston-Salem Black Panther Party Chapter

Fifty-one years ago this week the Black Panther Party was formed in Oakland California by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale. The Panthers have experienced a new appreciation in recent years, with numerous articles, books, and documentaries praising their activism in the late sixties and early seventies.

The Black Panthers were a radical resistance movement that opposed police oppression and economic exploitation in Black communities. Where the civil rights era’s leaders came primarily from church pulpits, the leaders of … Read the rest

Winston-Salem Honors Another Historical Site That It Failed To Preserve

This afternoon a local historic marker commemorating the 14th Street School was unveiled at 1215 N. Cameron Ave. It’s a warm September day, perfect weather for such a happy occasion.

The 14th Street School produced many proud graduates that went on to do many fine things in the community and beyond. Honoring the 14th School is in the same tradition as honoring the African School at Happy Hill, which was honored in May of this year.

Both former schools … Read the rest

Happy Hill, A Historic Gem That Wasn’t Preserved

Saturday, Mayor Allen Joines, members of the city council, various other local officials and community members gathered in Happy Hill for a historical marker unveiling, but the dirty truth about Winston’s oldest African American neighborhood was not mentioned.

The marker honored both the Brothers’ Spring and the African School, which were adjacent to each other, near where the Alder’s Point Apartments are currently located. Both were lost to development years ago.

I came out to honor and remember the African … Read the rest

Will Reynolds Envisioned More Than Just A White Christmas…

A few days ago The Winston-Salem Journal reported that more than 294,000 attended the 2016 Festival of Lights, making last year one of most successful years in the festival’s 25-year history. Tanglewood is a huge, sprawling park, with a lot to offer. The Festival of Lights is Tanglewood’s biggest annual event. It’s a popular Christmas tradition in the Triad, an illuminated drive down memory lane. But what about the history of Tanglewood? That’s a history that folks don’t like … Read the rest

Though Happy Hill Has Been Marginalized, It Remains Historically Important

Last Saturday Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf visited Winston-Salem. According to the Winston-Salem Journal this was the first time in Mayor Joines fifteen years in office that a foreign head of state visited Winston. In recent years presidents Bush and Obama have made frequent trips to Winston.

Presidents have visited our modest sized city fairly consistently since George Washington visited Salem during his southern tour. But I don’t remember any of them visiting any of Winston’s black neighborhoods. … Read the rest

Razing A Black Neighborhood, Then Celebrating It’s Culture

Friday night the New Winston Museum hosted an evening of great art and great music. It was the opening reception for The Birth of the Cool, a photo collection by Owen Daniels. The exhibit, which runs all month features twenty of Daniels’ exquisite photos of local jazz and blues musicians such as Joe Robinson and Big Ron Hunter. These local jazz and blues musicians are gifted musicians who don’t often get the recognition that they deserve.

As I listened to … Read the rest

Lawrence Joel And Darryl Hunt: Winston’s Two Finest Soilders

Memorial Day in Winston is a time when we remember that the LJVM stands for something. It’s not a meaningless acronym. The Coliseum bears Lawrence Joel‘s name and that’s something that we should be proud of. The Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum was christened by the city nearly thirty years ago to honor Lawrence Joel and all the veterans in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County that died in foreign wars.

Memorial Day should also be a time to reflect on … Read the rest

Honor The East Winston Library By Rebuilding It

Last Saturday, Mayor Joines, members of the city council and other city/county officials and honored guests gathered to celebrate yet another historical marker unveiling in the city. As a history major, I’m thrilled to see another historical marker in Winston. But I see little reason to honor the East Winston Library.

When I first read that the East Winston Library (referred to formally as the Malloy/Jordan East Winston Heritage Center) on East 7th Street was being honored, I must admit … Read the rest

Demolished But Not Forgotten: The Five Row Neighborhood At Reynolda

Recently a new historical marker was unveiled honoring Five Row. Five Row was a small African-American neighborhood just down the street from the Reynolda House, along Silas Creek. Five Row was home to the Reynolda’s African-American workers. The historical marker honoring Five Row has been placed between Silas Creek Parkway and Reynolda Road.

The Five Row neighborhood was razed sometime in 1960 to facilitate the completion of Silas Creek Parkway. Five Row was a relic of the past, when … Read the rest