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REMEMBERING MY HOMETOWN
GREENSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA
--statue of Nathaniel Greene (for whom Greensboro is named) in Guilford National Military Park
Greensboro (originally, Greensborough) was incorporated in 1808.  The first permanent settlers had come into the area about 1740 and were mostly Germans, Quakers, Scotch-Irish, and English who migrated south from the northern colonies.

In 1781 a famous Revolutionary War battle was fought in what is now the northern side of the city (The Battle of Guilford Courthouse).  Nathaniel Greene, the American general, put up a good fight with Lord Cornwallis; we didn't win that battle, but we did win the War.

Greensboro was a seemingly very well-rounded city when I grew up there in the late 40's to the 60's.  There were (and are) several colleges and universities--Guilford College (a Quaker school), Bennett College (a negro school), A & T University (the state's negro agricultural and technical school), Greensboro College (a Methodist school with emphasis on music), and Woman's College (which later became coed and changed its name to The University of North Carolina at Greensboro). 

The city was heavy in industry, the main one being denim and clothing.  Cone Mills and Burlington Mills were both nationally headquartered in Greensboro; factories and mill villages were numerous.  P. Lorillard opened a showcase cigarette factory on East Market Street in the early-to-mid 50's.  Other tobacco companies also produced in Greensboro.  The city was the home of Richardson-Merrill with all its Vicks products; at times, one could catch a whiff of Vapo-Rub when driving by a Vicks plant.  We had a large brick manufacturer and a terra cotta plant; there also was a very large Western Electric facility.  Jefferson-Standard Life Insurance Company and its affiliate the Pilot Life Insurance Company both call Greensboro home.  Some of these once-proud institutions have since fallen on hard times; some are now gone or have moved on.  But we once
had a
Krystal, and we always had a Krispy Kreme--some things will never go away..

There were three distinct social classes---upper, middle, lower.  The middle class, at the least, had an upper and a lower layer.  The big presence of institutions of higher learning, as well as a huge middle-class white-collar workforce which staffed and managed all the national headquarters offices located in the city, helped to temper what otherwise would surely have been a total redneck
mentality which was so evident in many of the smaller cities nearby. Greensboro was pretty much Camelot.  Nothing really ever seemed to happen there--until, perhaps, the famous
"sit-ins" at the Woolworth's lunch counter in the early 60's.  And then, there also was a very unfortunate and highly-publicized incident in late 1979 dubbed "The Greensboro Massacre".which left several dead. 

Famous persons from Greensboro include Edward R. Murrow, radio greats Bob Poole, Rick Dees, and Jack Armstrong (John Larsh); Dolly Madison and O.Henry (William Sydney Porter).

--early post card of the Administration Building at Woman's College (now UNC-G); the campus was rather large at the time and has grown much more over the years.
--early image of one of the many cotton and denim factories in Greensboro
--one of Greensboro's many beautiful churches; this one was built in the 50's and became a "regular" on the tourist route--it was quite imposing way back then.
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--page amended 23 March 2002
  SF
--amended 01 September 2002
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