Learn about different people and periods of time from a rotating cast of guest speakers.

  • Postponed
    September 16, 2018
    3:00 pm - 4:30 pm
    - This program has been postponed. Please check back for updates. Bayard Wootten, perhaps North Carolina’s best-known photographer in the first half of the twentieth century, is the subject of a presentation on September 16, by Jerry Cotten, author of Light and Air: The Photography of Bayard Wootten. Wootten embraced an artistic style of photography known as Pictorialism and operated studios in several NC towns, including Chapel Hill (1928-1954).

    Her landscape images and insightful portraits of Southerners, both black and white, resulted in numerous exhibitions, lectures, and books illustrated with her photographs. Wootten was known for her independence and determination as a woman and as a photographer. Her career was at its peak during the 1930s. Originally published in 1998, Light and Air, The Photography of Bayard Wootten was reprinted by the University of North Carolina Press in 2017 and features striking new scans of the illustrations using the best digital technology.

    Jerry Cotten is a native North Carolinian and has lived in Chapel Hill since 1971. He has degrees in American history from N.C. State University and the University of N.C. at Greensboro. He worked in the North Carolina Collection at the UNC Library as Photographic Archivist from 1972 until 2002. Free and Open to the Public

    Meeting Room B.
  • Bobby G
    November 10, 2018
    2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
    - Come hear author Stan Friedland discuss the life of Bobby Gersten, the oldest living UNC former basketball and baseball star, affectionately nick-named "The Grandaddy of UNC Athletics." Bobby will also be in attendance to say hi and answer your questions!

    At 5'7" tall, he's always been under-estimated by coaches and opponents, and always has had to work extremely hard to prove himself in all athletic situations to friends and foes alike. His successes have shown that it can be done, that nothing is impossible if one is determined to reach difficult goals and to put in the heavy work to achieve them. His other exploits are significant, adding up to an inspirational life story for an audience of all ages:
    • • He won the Paterson Award when he graduated UNC in 1942, as "The Best Athlete In His Graduating Class.
    • • He became an award winning high school basketball coach.
    • • He was the originating Dean of Students for a prominent junior college, that under his leadership, became one of the very best junior colleges in the country.
    • • He has spent 92 years creating and leading an over-night summer camp into becoming one of the best in the country. During that time, thousands of young people have testified how much he has impacted their lives for the better
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    • "Opening Our Future"
      November 30, 2018
      7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

      In 2017, Mayor Pam Hemminger created the Historic Civil Rights Commemorations Task Force.  We were asked to create a timeline that identifies people, places, and events that should be remembered for their part in the struggle for civil rights in Chapel Hill.

      We have spent the last year collecting and sharing stories, starting with the spark that ignited the local movement - the Chapel Hill Nine’s sit-in at the Colonial Drugstore. We hope that you can join us for this special event as we launch the “Opening Our Future” timeline and traveling exhibit, unveil the accompanying Chapel Hill Civil Rights Trading Cards, and celebrate and commemorate the Chapel Hill Nine and other young people who helped change the world.

      Sincerely, the Historic Civil Rights Commemorations Task Force: James Britt, Ken Broun, Sally Greene, Reginald Hildebrand, Dianne Jackson, Danita Mason-Hogans, OJ McGee, Mae McLendon, Jim Merritt, Cecelia Moore, Clyde Perry, Megan Stanley, Albert Williams, and William Sturkey.

      Chapel Hill Public Library Meeting Room B.

      This program was supported by grant funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the federal Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the Department of Natural and Cultural Resources.
    • Honoring the Chapel Hill Nine
      February 28, 2019
      5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
      - On Sunday, February 28, 1960, nine young men from Chapel Hill's all-black Lincoln High School sat at a booth in the Colonial Drug Store and sought the same service that was given to white customers. Their courageous step sparked a decade of direct-action civil rights demonstrations in Chapel Hill. At 5:00 on Thursday, February 28 of this year, the Town of Chapel Hill will begin to honor that action by dedicating a site for a permanent historical marker at 405 West Franklin Street, followed by a community celebration at First Baptist Church.

      The Town will unveil a rendering of the commemorative marker outside of the West End Wine Bar, which occupies the space where Colonial Drug used to be. The marker itself will be installed in 2020, the 60th anniversary of Chapel Hill’s first Civil Rights Era sit-in.

      After the unveiling and dedication, the Lincoln High School Alumni Association will lead a community march to First Baptist Church at 106 N Roberson St for an evening program that organizers are describing as a celebration of the Chapel Hill Nine and the Civil Rights youth movement at Lincoln High School. The purpose of this program is to recognize and inspire the power to change, and to inspire Chapel Hill's local youth.

      These programs are being organized by Lincoln High School Alumni Association, Town of Chapel Hill, Historic Civil Rights Commemorative Task Force, Chapel Hill Public Library, and First Baptist Church.

      For further information about the permanent historical marker, contact Molly Luby, Special Projects Coordinator at Chapel Hill Public Library. For information about the community celebration at First Baptist, contact Danita Mason-Hogans.

      Visit chapelhillhistory.org to learn about the Chapel Hill Nine story.