Today's Fact Friday comes to you from 'Voices from the Past,' which per their website, is "a unique living history event told by 30 portrayers telling the stories of our founding fathers, civic leaders, pioneering women, and a few interesting characters."
Spread the news - Voices From the Past returns Saturday, May 14, 2022, 1-4 p.m., after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.
Included among the 30 costumed portrayers are two descendants who will be telling the story of their ancestors.
Pinewood Cemetery is the resting place of African American builders, businessmen, doctors, educators and community leaders who thrived as Charlotte moved into the 20th century. Meet Dr. McCrorey, president of JCSU, and Thaddeus Tate, the local barber and a powerful leader in the Black community.
There are too many interesting “residents” in Elmwood Cemetery to list them all here, but here are just a few you may want to meet, such as Dr. Annie Alexander, the South’s first female physician. She may be too modest to tell you, but ask her how she did on her exam.
Don’t miss getting your picture with Randolph Scott, the movie star. Although he’s been gone for thirty years, his gravesite is the most visited. You'll also have your heart touched by the boy whose name we don’t know.
At Settlers’ Cemetery you will hear stories from Charlotte’s Colonial and Revolutionary War eras. Meet Thomas Polk, founder of Charlotte. General George Graham of the Mecklenburg Militia will share his experiences fighting against the British forces, and learn how the 60-plus gold mines in the area made Charlotte the banking center it is today.
This year we are honoring the men and women of the Charlotte Fire Department by telling a few of their amazing stories. The portrayers are current fire fighters in the CFD. If you are a native Charlottean and lived in the Myers Park area in the 1950s, you don’t want to miss this rare outing for the restored Neptune pump fire truck that used to be in front of the East Blvd. fire station.
Randy Thomason portrays his great-uncle, William Houser, brick mason and architect, after the Civil War.
Thaddeus Tate, barber, businessman, and civic leader in the African American community.
Dr. Annie Alexander was the first female doctor in the South.
And if you are a regular reader of Voices of the Past, you may recall the article on this very interesting "resident" of Pinewood Cemetery. His name alone makes you want to know more about him. Col. Charles Samuel Lafayette Alexander Taylor, 1859-1905. Which story will he tell us on May 14th? His service to country as a soldier in the Spanish-American war? His service to community as Commander of the Neptune Volunteer Fire Company, an all-black company of volunteers that supplied much of the manpower for Charlotte's fledgling fire department from 1887 to the early 1900s? Or maybe how he served the high society ladies of Charlotte as their ballroom dancing instructor.
If you visit Settlers first, there is parking near the cemetery along Poplar and 5th streets. Or you may want to begin at Elmwood, where you can take advantage of the free parking. The Cedar Street gate will open at 12 p.m.
Cold bottled water will be available at the Welcome Tent along with information tables manned by Mecklenburg Historical Association and Old Mecklenburg Genealogical Society volunteers.
Learn more about the day's event, parking and a few tips to make your visit more enjoyable at voicesfromthepastcharlotte.com.
Standing Partner for the Fact Friday Series:
The Charlotte Museum of History
About The Charlotte Museum of History
The Charlotte Museum of History exists to save and share the Charlotte region’s history, helping create a better understanding of the past and inspiring dialogue about the future. The museum is the steward of the 1774 Hezekiah Alexander Rock House and homesite, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is the oldest home in Mecklenburg County. Visit charlottemuseum.org and follow the museum on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. The museum is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have interesting Charlotte facts you’d like to share or just to provide feedback!
“History is not the past, it is the present. We carry our history with us. We are our history.” - James Baldwin