Fact Friday 50 - Charlotte Chamber of Commerce


Happy Friday everyone!

 

The Charlotte Chamber of Commerce is a membership, volunteer-led organization. Its vision is to make Charlotte the best place to run a business and to live.

 

Its current mission statement: The Charlotte Chamber creates competitive advantage by growing the economy, advocating pro-business public policies, and delivering programs and services.

 

Records show that the Chamber of Commerce existed in Charlotte as early as 1876, although at that time it was known as the Board of Trade. In 1879 it became the Charlotte Chamber, and prominent local merchant Samuel Wittkowsky served as its first president. It existed until the 1890s, when it disbanded for reasons unknown, and was revived in 1905. This new organization of civic-minded Charlotteans was known as the Greater Charlotte Club, which dedicated itself to community building and became the forerunner of the present Charlotte Chamber of Commerce, which was incorporated in 1915. The first office for its nearly 400 members was located on South Tryon and Second, and it moved down the street to this building at the corner of South Tryon and Fourth in 1921. This photo (below) of the chamber’s entrance was taken in 1936.

 

The chamber’s headquarters contained an auditorium and a dining room, and also provided space for various local civic organizations like the Civitans, the Rotary Club, and the Charlotte Junior Chamber of Commerce. The chamber remained here until 1953, when it moved to the Addison Building on South Church Street. In the 1970s, it occupied the former Wachovia Building on West Trade and remained there until 1995, when it moved back to its original location on South Tryon and Second. Today the Charlotte Chamber is located at 330 South Tryon Street, and continues to spur economic and social development in the city.

 

Along those lines, click here to watch Chamber Board Chair Ned Curran and Chamber President Bob Morgan’s discussion about the City of Charlotte’s nondiscrimination ordinance and HB 2.

 

The site of the old chamber headquarters was occupied by the American Commercial Bank in the 1960s, and in the 1970s it became a parking garage. The corner is now home to McCormick and Schmick’s Seafood.

 

Until next week!

 

Chris.

 

Email me at chris@704Shop.com if you have interesting Charlotte facts you’d like to share or just to provide feedback!

 

Find all previous Fact Friday blog posts by clicking here.

 

Information taken from:

 

CharlotteChamber.com

 

Charlotte Then and Now, 2013, Brandon Lunsford.

 

“We have to do with the past only as we can make it useful to the present and the future.” – Frederick Douglass