Happy Friday everyone!
The Panthers are on a roll! 704 Shop is pumped about it and we know you are too! Judging by sales this week at the Southern Christmas Show, we should be seeing more #LUUUUKKE shirts around town. Cardiac Cats tees, too!
Obviously we adore our hometown heroes of the gridiron. And with a current record of 9-0, the team has already made history, never having started the season with this many wins in a row! But did you know that the land the stadium sits on has a pretty historic past, as well?
Good Samaritan Hospital was the first private, independent hospital in North Carolina to have been built exclusively for the treatment of African Americans, and is one of the oldest of its kind in the U.S. Located in Charlotte’s Third Ward neighborhood between Mint and Graham streets, it was built in 1891 with funds raised by St. Peter’s Episcopal Church and its parishioners. The church had already started St. Peter’s Hospital on nearby Seventh Street as the first civilian hospital in North Carolina, and in the 1880s plans were laid for a mission chapel and care facility for the city’s black population. In 1925 a major addition was built immediately behind the original building, more than doubling the size of the hospital. In 1937 another wing was added, making the facility a 100-bed hospital staffed by doctors and nurses who were often African-Americans themselves. The view shown here appeared in a Charlotte Observer article about the hospital in 1961.
By the early 1950s, the small church found it increasingly difficult to support a modern hospital, and in 1961 ownership of Good Samaritan was formally passed to the city and Charlotte Memorial Hospital [where yours truly was later born in 1980]. Another new addition was built facing Graham Street, and its name was changed to Charlotte Community Hospital. It closed as a hospital in 1982, was renovated again, and soon became the Magnolias Rest Home. In 1996 the historic and the homes nearby were torn down to make way for Ericsson Stadium, today known as Bank of America Stadium and home to the [ILLUSTRIOUS] Carolina Panthers. The hospital existed roughly near the forty-yard line of the field, and a historical marker acknowledging the site was erected outside the stadium in 2002. The chapel of the hospital was saved, and was recently displayed by the Levine Museum of the New South on Seventh Street in uptown.
Until next week!
Email me at chris@704Shop.com if you have interesting Charlotte facts you’d like to share or just to provide feedback!
Information and illustrations taken from Charlotte Then and Now, 2013, Brandon Lunsford. Additional commentary added.