Greensboro 1808 - present

  • Greensboro 1808 - present
    • Mar 25, 1808: Ralph Gorrell sells 42 acres at the center of Guilford County to build the town of Greensborough* for the price of $98. Forty-four lots are sold for $1,689.39.
    • 1809: Greensboro becomes the Guilford County seat of government. The courthouse is moved from Martinville on May 18 and the first Greensborough* session is held the next day at 10:00 a.m.
    • 1810: Legislative charter for the town is written.
    • 1819: The first route of the Underground Railroad, a network of trails and hiding places that led fleeing slaves to the North, began in a cave near a creek on what is now the Guilford College campus. A slave from Guilford County, John Dimrey was the first to follow the Underground Railroad to freedom.
    • 1820: Benjamin Benson, a slave wins his freedom in Guilford County Superior Court.
    • 1823: The Greensboro Patriot established.
    • 1828: Henry Humphries builds the first steam cotton mill in the area. The Mount Hecla Steam Cotton Mills had 3,000 spindles and 50 looms.
    • 1829: Town’s first census includes 369 white citizens, 101 slaves, 26 free blacks, five stores and three saloons.
    • 1829: Henry Humphrey establishes Humphrey’s Folly (dry goods) at Courthouse Square (Market and Elm).
    • 1830: Police department established.
    • 1831: The Methodists’ first church building is built on South Elm Street. Jesse Lindsay donated land to the First Presbyterian Church.
    • 1833: Greensborough* Female School (Greensboro College) is established by The Rev. Peter Doub, a Methodist minister.
    • 1834: The state legislature unanimously passes “An Act to Incorporate the Trustees of New Garden Boarding School.” Local Quakers will raise the money for the school, the first coeducational institution in North Carolina. It will train students to be teachers and eventually will become Guilford College.
    • 1837: New Garden Boarding School (Guilford College) opens.
    • December 28, 1838: The first charter for a women’s college in North Carolina and the third in the United States is granted for Greensborough Female College (Greensboro College).
    • October 18, 1839: Town officials decide to have elm trees planted along the four main streets when spring arrives. They hire a man named Gill to plant the trees for $34. Later, with a beautiful canopy over the main street, it was named Elm Street. But about 1900, the trees were chopped down, supposedly to give Greensboro a big-city look.
    • 1844: Blandwood, an Italian villa style home at 447 West Washington St designed by Alexander Jackson Davis is built for Governor John Motley Morehead.
    • December 12, 1845: Dr. I.J.M. Lindsay, appointed Greensboro postmaster by President Andrew Jackson in 1832, is abruptly removed from office after it is discovered he voted for Whig Henry Clay rather than Democrat James K. Polk in the presidential election. The Patriot newspaper notes it is a case of “to the victors belong the spoils.”
    • 1846: Classes begin at Greensboro Female College (Greensboro College), with 87 students enrolled. Chartered in 1838, it is the oldest state-chartered women’s college in North Carolina and second-oldest state-chartered women’s college in the South.
    • July 11,1851: Calvin Graves (D-NC Sen.) participated in a ceremony laying the first rails for the North Carolina Railroad.
    • 1854: William Clarkson Porter establishes Porter’s Drug Store at 121 S. Elm Street.
    • 1858: A courthouse of Roman Corinthian architecture is erected at Market and Elm Streets. It features a wooden tower with a clock facing Elm Street.
    • 1861-1865: Civil War – Guilford County residents vote 2771 to 113 against secession in Feb. 1861, but N.C. withdraws from the Union on May 20, 1861. Six local units serve. The Guilford Grays are the first soldiers from Guilford to join the Confederacy. In1862, First Presbyterian Church gives its buildings to the Confederacy and its church bell is melted to make ammunition. The Reverend Jacob Henry Smith becomes a Confederate chaplain. He visits and preaches a Christmas sermon to the Guilford Grays in Virginia. His wife, Mary Watson Smith, along with other Greensboro women helped serve meals to troops arriving or departing at the railroad station. Greensboro women prepare bandages and care packages for local troops. Confederate soldiers were disenfranchised after the war and must apply to the federal government for pardons. A certified copy of a Presidential Warrant of Pardon for prominent Guilford County attorney, James McLean can be viewed at the Greensboro Historical Museum.
    • 1862: William Sydney Porter (O. Henry) is born.
    • 1863: Fire closes Greensboro Female College.
    • 1864: Greensboro residents suffer food shortages. The railroad line linking Greensboro with Danville, Virginia is completed.
    • April 1865: Greensboro becomes the seat of the Confederate government for a few days with a brief visit from Jefferson Davis. A week later, General Johnston and General Sherman agree to surrender terms. Thirty thousand Federal troops occupy Greensboro after the war.
    • 1865: William L. Scott is appointed mayor of Greensboro. Appointed town commissioners: Lyndon Swaim, Jacob Hiatt, A.C. Caldwell, A.P. Eckel, W.C. Porter (O.Henry’s uncle), and Dr. D.W.C. Benbow.
    • Late 1860s: The city’s first suburb, near Ashe St., called Warnersville, a black community is developed.
    • 1870: Democrat, Robert M. Sloan elected mayor. Elected commissioners: James W. Albright, Julius A. Gray, John Alexander Gilmer, A.J. Brockman.
    • March 28, 1870: Greensboro officially becomes a city, with 2,000 residents and one square mile of incorporated land.
    • 1871: Benbow House at South Elm and Sycamore streets is built by Quaker leader Dr. Dewitt Clinton Benbow to draw commercial travelers.
    • 1872: J.A. Odell establishes Odell Hardware Co. at 327 S. Elm Street.
    • 1872: The courthouse at Market and Elm Streets burns.
    • 1873: A new courthouse is built on the same site as the 1858 building and has the same architectural design except for an iron tower with a clock on four sides.
    • 1873: Bennett College opens.
    • 1874: The Central Protestant, a weekly religious and family newspaper founded.
    • 1882: Green Hill Cemetery founded.
    • 1883: The Daily Workman, a non-partisan newspaper established.
    • December 18, 1884: Banner Tobacco Warehouse opens on West Market Street, with Ralph D. Williams & Co. as proprietors. The warehouse pledges to expend its best efforts to secure good prices for its clients. It offers stalls for the tobacco and camp-rooms with water for farmers who need to spend the night.
    • 1885: Legislature charters The Piedmont Bank of Greensboro. Organizers, including such prominent business leaders as Julius A. Gray and A.M. Scales, start with $77,000 in capital funds. The bank becomes City National Bank in January 1899.
    • 1886: An earthquake centered in Charleston, S.C. shakes Greensboro.
    • 1886: The city orders a steam-powered fire engine.
    • 1887: Asheboro St. Pharmacy is founded by William Clarkson Porter and George W. Kestler.
    • 1889: Bennett College chartered.
    • October 6, 1889: Four Greensboro women start the Coney Club to study music and the lives and works of great composers. Eventually the club would offer concerts. The name was later changed to the Euterpe Club, after the Greek muse of music. It has remained active in Greensboro culture and schools, and today is the South’s oldest music club.
    • 1890: According to the Census, there are 3,317 residents. The Greensboro Record publishes the first issue on November 17 at 222 South Elm Street.
    • 1890: C.M. Vanstory establishes Vanstory Clothing Co.
    • 1890: Lunsford Richardson Sr. and John Fariss establish L. Richardson Drug Co at 121 S. Elm Street.
    • 1891: The General Assembly issues a charter for the State Normal and Industrial School. One of the reasons Greensboro is chosen as the site was the city’s successful passage of $30,000 in bonds to pay for the college’s first buildings. The school referred to as Woman’s College or “WC” became UNCG in 1963
    • . Throughout 1890s: July 4th celebrations are held at Guilford Battleground. After 1899 fairs are held at West Lee Street Fairgrounds. Greensboro Dramatic Club and visiting acts hold performances at the nine-hundred-seat Academy of Music Theater on West Market. The Benbow Hall on South Elm is a theater, opera house and dance hall.
    • 1891: City limit extends to include 4 square miles.
    • 1892: Brothers Moses and Ceasar Cone establish the Southern Finishing and Warehouse Company.
    • 1892: State Normal and Industrial School opens; becomes State Normal and Industrial College in 1896.
    • 1892: Simon Schiffman founds Schiffman’s Jewelry store in the 300 block of South Elm Street.
    • 1893: Agricultural and Mechanical College opens.
    • 1894: Lunsford Richardson introduces Vick’s VapoRub.
    • 1896: Brooks Lumber Company opens.
    • 1896: Proximity Cotton Mill is built.
    • 1898: C.C. Fordham’s Drug Store is built on South Elm Street.
    • 1898: Revolution Mill is built.
    • 1898: Belk’s Department store opens.
    • 1899: A new Southern Railroad station on South Elm Street opens.
    • 1900: First Agricultural Fair is held.
    • 1901: Ten prominent Greensboro citizens, including George A. Grimsley, P. H. Hanes, C.C. Taylor, J. Van Lindley, J.W. Scott and others form a mutual life insurance company called Security Life and Annuity Company. Another group of businessmen organize Greensboro Life Insurance Co.
    • Sept. 1902: President Theodore Rooseveltmade a short talk from the back of histrainwhile returning to Washington from a Southern trip.
    • 1902: The newly built White Oak cotton mill is set to employ 3,155 workers. The American Cigar Company employs 1,800. Other instances of Greensboro's growth include: erection of a city hall, opera house, and market; erection of Benbow and Huffines hotels and enlargement of McAdoo and Clegg hotels; completion by Greensboro Electric Company of a street railway, light and power system; a 13 percent increase in postal receipts; growth in bank deposits to $1,412,295, a 78 percent gain since November 1899.
    • 1902: Public library opens.
    • 1903: A.W. McAlister founds Pilot Life Insurance Company.
    • 1904: Blue Bell founded.
    • 1904: The Pomona Graded School opens.
    • 1904: The Dixie Building at 125 South Elm St, designed by F.A. Weston is constructed.
    • 1904: C.C. Hudson Overall Co (later Blue Bell/Wrangler) is founded.
    • Oct. 1905:PresidentTheodore Roosevelt spoke briefly to a throng of people who gathered along South Elm Street and at thetrainstation when his four-car presidential train stopped to refill with water while returning to Washington from Raleigh, where he made a major address at the State Fair.
    • 1905: White Oak Cotton Mill is built.
    • 1905: E.S. Wills establishes Wills Book and Stationery Co.
    • 1905: Lunsford Richardson founded Vick Manufacturing.
    • 1908: Greensboro celebrates its 100th anniversary with a six-day party from Oct. 11-17. More than 6,000 schoolchildren and 400 Confederate veterans march in parades, and an airship flies over the city. The 20,000-seat Hippodrome hosts many events, and the Central Carolina Fair has the largest poultry exhibit, with about 3,000 fowls, ever shown in the South.
    • 1908: First Lutheran Church of Greensboro and Greensboro’s Synagogue are established.
    • 1909: Greensboro Daily News begins publication on July 18 with 2,000 Greensboro subscribers.
    • June 1910: William Sydney Porter, novelist known as O. Henry, dies at age 42.
    • September 28, 1911: The nation’s first official piece of airmail is delivered to Greensboro. Sent from New York by postal inspector T.M. Reddy to his friend Postmaster Robert D. Douglas, the text reads, “This is the first piece of mail ever dispatched by aeroplane in the United States. Best wishes for your welfare and prosperity.”
    • 1911: Greensboro’s first “modern” shopping center – a two-building, dozen-unit operation is built at Fairview and 14th Street by Cone Mills Corp. The adjacent building, built the previous year was called the Proximity Mercantile Co.
    • 1911: The Greensboro News Co. is formed and has a circulation of 5,600.
    • 1912: Jefferson Standard Life Insurance Company moves to Greensboro. Proximity Print Works opens in Greensboro to produce printed fabrics.
    • 1914: Wesley Long Hospital opens.
    • 1914: Cones’ Proximity Manufacturing Company employs 2,389.
    • 1915: Holton Drug Store and the McAdoo Hotel at 301 S. Elm St. are destroyed by fire.
    • 1916: High Point Road constructed.
    • 1917: The courthouse property at Market and Elm Streets is sold to Jefferson Standard Life Insurance Co. for $171,000.
    • 1917: Rotary Civic Club is organized.
    • 1917: Wesley Long Hospital opens.
    • March 27, 1917: The Manicure Shop opens for business in the Guilford Hotel Building on Sycamore Street. The only exclusive shop of its kind in Greensboro.
    • 1918: Guilford County Courthouse at West Market and Library Place is constructed.
    • 1919: O. Henry Hotel is built at the corner of Bellemeade and North Elm Streets.
    • August 20, 1920: American-Southern Motors produces its first “American Balanced Six” automobile, often called the “Smile Car.” The company is affiliated with American Motors and was formed to produce the car for a southern clientele. It was located near North Elm Street but closed in 1922.
    • 1920:The Carnegie Library had become the state's third largest.
    • 1921: Council-manager form of government begins.
    • 1923: Greensboro grows to include 17.84 square miles, a jump from 4 square miles authorized in 1891. The city population jumps from 19,861 to 40,000 (estimated).
    • Oct 1,1923: 17-story Jefferson Standard building at Market and Elm Streets is completed and is the tallest and largest office building in the South. 23 carloads of marble line the corridors. New York architect Charles C. Hartmann moved to Greensboro to get the plum assignment of designing the $2.5 million tower.
    • 1924: The city built a library for blacks on East Washington Street near Bennett College.
    • 1924: Pilot Life Insurance Company established.
    • September 18, 1924: A developer makes 100 lots available for sale near Cornwallis Road. The property is marketed to people of moderate means who want a home with every feature, including gas, water and lights. The minimum cost of homes to be built will be $3,500. The location, known as Kirkwood, remains desirable today.
    • November 6, 1924: The Greensboro Historical Society is incorporated after communications with local civic groups and historical organizations. Alice Bell becomes its first president.
    • Nov. 11, 1925: The Greensboro Historical Museum opened with its collection shown in eight cases housed in rooms provided by the public library.
    • 1926: WBIG becomes Greensboro’s first radio station.
    • 1926: Blumenthal’s retail store is established at 358 South Elm.
    • 1927: The U.S. Census Bureau estimates Greensboro's current population at 50,300. Based on the bureau's estimates, Greensboro is the third largest city in the state, behind Winston-Salem (77,100) and Charlotte (55,900) and ahead of Durham (45,700) and Wilmington (38,400).
    • Jan 17, 1927: The King Cotton Hotel opens at East Market and Davie Streets – the previous site for Christopher Moring’s Inn and the current site of the News & Record building. The King Cotton, a 225 room hotel was Greensboro's first skyscraper and cost $1.3 million.
    • 1927: Greensboro Bank and Trust Company Building at 301 S. Elm St. and designed by Charles C. Hartmann is built.
    • 1927: War Memorial Stadium is completed and the Carolina Theatre opens.
    • 1927: The Pomona Graded School is heavily damaged by fire. The school's 385 students will be transferred to the new Pomona High School and 150 high school students will be transferred to Central High School.
    • 1928: Greensboro High Point Airport opens – the first in N.C.
    • 1928: Sears Roebuck and Co. opens a retail branch store on South Greene Street.
    • August 13, 1928: For the first time, the Carolina Theatre shows a talking motion picture, “Glorious Betsy.” Each of the three showings is standing-room only, and loud applause often drowns out the dialogue. Because so many viewers come from out of town, automobiles fill the downtown streets.
    • 1929: F.W. Woolworth Building, designed by Charles C. Hartmann, at 132 South Elm St. is constructed.
    • 1930: The Greensboro News Co. acquires the Daily Record. The evening paper has a staff of eight and a circulation of 15,000.
    • 1930: Air passenger service begins.
    • 1930: Art Deco S.H. Kress Building at 212 South Elm St. opens. It is considered one of the finest examples of art deco architecture in the South.
    • 1930: The oldest and largest building at A&T is destroyed by fire.
    • 1930: July 28, War Memorial Stadium hosts its first professional night baseball game when 6,500 people come to see the Greensboro Patriots play the Raleigh Caps. A general admission ticket is 50 cents. Baseball stadiums are experimenting with night games, and so far they are drawing good crowds. But the Patriots lose, 22-6.
    • 1933: United States Post Office and Courthouse at 324 West Market Street is dedicated.
    • 1934: Burlington Mills Corp. locates executive offices in Greensboro and becomes the largest producer of rayon fabrics in the United States.
    • 1935: Burlington’s headquarters is moved to Greensboro to temporary offices in the Jefferson Standard Building. By 1936, 22 plants are in operation, with sales of $25 million.
    • 1936: A tornado strikes downtown Greensboro at 7:15 p.m. on April 2. A dozen people are killed, over 100 injured and many homes and businesses destroyed.
    • 1937: In August, Greensboro Jaycees and civic leaders meet at the O. Henry hotel and agree to launch a PGA-sanctioned golf tournament in Greensboro.
    • Jan 2, 1941: The last issues of the Greensborough Patriot roll off the presses.
    • 1943: A U.S. Army basic training center is built. Over 30,000 soldiers are camped within the city limits of Greensboro. The camp morphs into the Overseas Replacement Depot (ORD), one of only 3 in the country and only one of its type in the eastern United States.
    • 1945: Gate City Insurance Co. merges with Pilot Life. Combined firms establish one of the largest insurance companies in the south, with the headquarters to be in the Sedgefield offices of the Pilot. Jefferson Standard purchases controlling interest in Pilot Life.
    • 1946: Guilford Mills is founded by James Hornaday in a garage on Sycamore Street, with six employees and two knitting machines that make synthetic fabric for ladies lingerie. Fabric production begins in 1947.
    • 1947: Sears, Roebuck and Co. opens mail order facility.
    • 1948: Proximity Manufacturing and Revolution Cotton Mills merge to form Cone Mills Corp.
    • Oct. 11, 1948: New $60,000 polio convalescent hospital - Central Carolina Convalescent Hospital opens. Guilford County had the worst polio epidemic in the United States. There would be 205 cases and five deaths before it ended. Cooperation during the polio crisis led to the consolidation of the county’s three health departments in 1949.
    • 1948: Guilford Industries for the Blind dedicates its new home, an $80,000 plant at 922 W. Lee St on March 12.
    • June 1, 1948: The City Planning and Zoning Commission distributes a pamphlet describing a plan to route "inter-regional" traffic around Greensboro. Chairman Stark S. Dillard introduced the loop as part of “a comprehensive thoroughfare system for Greensboro, based on the existing form of the city, designed to meet present and future needs and yet flexible enough to meet any unexpected shifting.”It was envisioned as a network of three “outer loops” involving Holden and Pisgah Church roads, Westover and Aycock streets and a new road planned just south of Lake Jeanette.
    • 1949: WFMY-TV television station begins operations.
    • 1949: Juliette Dwiggins is the first female elected to the City Council.
    • 1950: About 74,400 people live in Greensboro and the city covers 11,600 acres.
    • 1951: William Hampton becomes the first African-American elected to the City Council.
    • 1951: August 3 six women join the city’s police department.
    • 1953: Moses H. Cone Memorial Hospital opens.
    • 1954: Greensboro College accepts men as students.
    • 1954: City planners began looking to the future by preparing the city's first thoroughfare plan - a design that included Painter Boulevard, planned as a loop around the city.
    • Mid-1950s: Bennett College professor Edward Edmonds led a group of parents to protest inferior educational facilities before the school board. He also demanded integration of the whites-only pool at Lindley Park.
    • September 12, 1954: Greensboro is suffering from its first drought in modern history. Since water rationing hasn’t helped, the City Council hires a professional rainmaker who promises to produce rain in 60 days by seeding clouds with iodide crystals.
    • October 15, 1954: Hurricane Hazel exacts a death toll in an eight-state area, but brings an end to an extreme drought in North Carolina and Greensboro.
    • 1955: P. Lorillard Company opens manufacturing plant.
    • September 3, 1957: Greensboro becomes the first city in the Southeast to desegregate its all-white public schools when five black children enroll at Gillespie Park School. The children endure heckling, screaming from spectators. The next day, Greensboro Senior High is integrated when former Dudley student Josephine Boyd transfers.
    • 1957: The city limits now extends more than 49 square miles.
    • 1957: Starmount builds the Friendly Shopping Center designed by Greensboro architects McMinn, Norfleet & Wicker on Starmount Farms property once owned by Edward and Blanche Benjamin. Opened with14 businesses and 150,000 square feet of retail space. There are 25,000 shoppers on opening day. 2,000 drivers compete for the 1,300 parking spaces and traffic backs up for 5 blocks. Major stores include Belk, Woolworth’s, Eckerd and a Colonial grocery.
    • 1958: Greensboro celebrates sesquicentennial May 2-10.
    • 1958: Anew airport terminal was dedicated.
    • 1959: Greensboro Generals make their debut against the Washington Presidents on Nov. 11.
    • 1959: Governor Hodges appoints nine Greensboro residents to serve on the newly created John Motley Morehead Memorial Commission. The group will restore the Morehead homeplace – Blandwood - on W. Washington Street.
    • October 24, 1959: The Greensboro Coliseum is dedicated with 8,000 people attending the ceremony. The opening attraction will be North Carolina’s only showing of “Holiday on Ice” that season. The coliseum reserves all seats at prices ranging from $2 to $3.50 and provides paved parking for 3,000 cars.
    • October 1959: The State Highway Commission promised three major highway jobs to be started within a year ­— making U.S. 29 North a dual-lane road for a distance of 11½ miles from Greensboro to the Rockingham County line, extending Aycock Street under West Market Street and Friendly Road and extending and improving Wendover Avenue from Green Valley Drive to Huffine Mill Road.
    • 1960: On Feb 1, four A&T students, Franklin McCain, David Richmond, Ezell Blair, Jr. (Jireel Khazan), and Joseph McNeil sit down at the whites-only lunch counter and refuse to leave. Within 2 months, the sit-in spreads to 54 cities in 9 states. On July 25, Woolworth agrees to integrate its Greensboro store. Woolworth looses $200,000 in business during the sit-ins.
    • 1961: The Clegg Hotel at South Elm and Walker is demolished. The hotel hosted famous persons, such as William Jennings Bryan.
    • 1962: A contract is let for the extension of East Wendover Avenue, from Raleigh Street through the Bessemer area to a connection with U.S. Highway 70-A at Penny Road. The expected cost is $1,500,000.
    • 1963: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. visits Greensboro to support civil rights protests at A&T.
    • June 1963: N.C. A&T student body president, Jesse Jackson is arrested for 'inciting a riot' during civil rights demonstrations in downtown.
    • 1965: Ownership of the Greensboro News Co. transfers to Norfolk-Portsmouth Newspapers of Norfolk, Va. Frank Batten is president and Carl Jefferess remains as publisher.
    • 1965: The Greensboro Jaycees are recognized as the best Jaycee Chapter in the world. They win this honor again in 1968.
    • 1966:Gaston Avenue downtown was renamed as Friendly Avenue. It became the third major route from downtown to northwest Greensboro, after Market Street and Battleground Avenue, when portions of Gaston and Madison avenues were connected and a bridge built on Friendly over the railroad tracks through downtown.
    • 1966: Themost expensive city thoroughfare in state history was began - a 10.3-mile extension and widening ofWendover Avenueto six lanes at a cost of $12.5 million.
    • 1966: Sixteen-story Wachovia building at 201. N. Elm Street opens.
    • 1966:Road bonds were approved to fund improvements to major thoroughfares such as High Point Road and Battleground Avenue.
    • 1967: Carolina Peacemaker newspaper begins publication.
    • December 23, 1968: Greensboro Beautiful is founded. The private nonprofit organization encourages businesses, residents and community groups to work together for the beauty and ecology of the city. Its sponsors are the Parks and Recreation Department, the Chamber of Commerce and the Greensboro Council of Garden Clubs.
    • 1968: The $5.5 million Wendover section between Hill and Church Streets is completed.
    • 1968: Henry Frye becomes the first black in the 20th Century to serve in the N.C. House of Representatives.
    • December 5, 1968: Elreta Alexander-Ralston becomes the country’s first African American woman to be elected a District Court judge. Judge A, as she was called, held the position until 1981 and was known for her personality and style. “Speak now, darlin’, because the truth will set you free,” she would say to those appearing before her in court.
    • 1969: The bid is let for the $3,275,725 extension of West Wendover Avenue from West Friendly Avenue to Interstate 40.
    • 1969: May 19-20: Violence erupts after weeks of community meetings and protests over administrators not allowing a student election to stand at Dudley High School. Students are arrested. Police are accused of misconduct. May 21: Students assemble again near Dudley. The principal requests police aid. Rock throwing erupts. Tear gas is used to disperse the crowd. Activity moves to A&T. The mayor requests National Guard assistance. By 8 p.m., police barricade streets in the area to prevent white motorists from traveling through. Late that evening, police and the National Guard begin receiving sniper fire. Sometime late that night or early the next morning, Willie Grimes is shot in the back of the head. May 22: Students bring Grimes by car to Moses Cone Hospital. He is pronounced dead on arrival at 1:30 a.m. . Another student is shot in the leg. Reports of sniper fire continue until dawn. At 10 a.m., the mayor declares a state of emergency. A curfew is imposed. That afternoon, A&T officials announce the school will close as of 6 p.m. May 23. Gunfire continues throughout the evening between students and police. May 23: Five police officers are wounded, one seriously, when they are shot near Scott Hall at 1 a.m. The National Guard sweeps Cooper and Scott halls at 7 a.m., fearing a large number of firearms are being stored. Students are taken downtown and released that afternoon. Nine weapons, three of them operable, are found. Aug. 26: The police chief announces that findings in the joint police and SBI investigation into Willie Grimes' death are inconclusive. Oct. 3-4: A state arm of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights holds hearings in Greensboro on the "disturbances" at Dudley and A&T. Grimes is mentioned little in the testimony. March 1970: The committee concludes an underlying system of inequality in the city created conditions that caused violence to erupt. It offers recommendations on changes.
    • April 7, 1969: President Nixon presents the Congressional Medal of Honor posthumously to Pfc. Phill G. McDonald for heroism during the Vietnam War. He was killed while attempting to save the other men in his platoon. His family donated the medal to the Historical Museum.
    • 1970: Construction begins on a new 800,000 square-feet-four-story expansion to the Sears’Catalog Order Plant at 2600 Lawndale Drive, at a cost of more than $5 million. When completed, the total building space is 2,000,000 square feet, with parking for 1,800 cars.
    • 1971: Bryan Park and Golf Course is dedicated on May 20. The speaker at the event, U.S. Rep. Richardson Preyer, remarks that Joseph and Kathleen Bryan should know how a pancake feels when the syrup is poured over it. The Bryans, noted for their many philanthropic endeavors, later purchased more land to expand the park’s facilities.
    • Oct. 24, 1971: The King Cotton Hotel was razed by implosion.
    • 1972: After 10 years and a cost of $12.5 million, Wendover Ave - the 10.7 mile link between Burlington Road (old U.S. 70) east of the city limit to Interstate 40 at the western city limit is compete and in use.
    • 1973: A group of business and professional leaders organize Greensboro City Club. First election for Greensboro mayor; previous mayors were elected by the City Council.
    • 1974: Newly completed City Club, decorated by Otto Zenke, opens with about 600 members, occupying the 9th and 10th floors of the First Union building.
    • September 15, 1976: The David Caldwell Historic Park is dedicated. Caldwell (1725-1824), a distinguished minister, educator and physician, once owned the land where the Hobbs Road Park stands. David and Rachel Caldwell raised a family there, operated a farm and founded a preparatory school for young men.
    • 1976: Carolina Circle Mall opens on Aug 4 with 22 stores. The mall employs 1,000 with another 900 jobs created from peripheral businesses.
    • 1976: Shops at Forum VI opens with 220,000 total square feet; 126,000 square feet of retail space and 19 stores.
    • November 19, 1976: The city’s downtown area loses its last major grocery store when the Mitchell and Anthony Grocery on North Elm Street closes. The grocery, Greensboro’s first to offer home delivery, specialized in fancy foods and served the city for almost 50 years. Its customers included the Cone family.
    • 1976: The present home of the News & Record is completed on the site of the old King Cotton Hotel at the corner of Market and Davie Streets.
    • 1977: Proximity Print Works closes.
    • 1978: Proximity Cotton Mill closes.
    • 1979: Members of the Communist Workers Party assemble in Morningside Homes, a public housing complex for a “Death to the Klan” march and labor rally. Ku Klux Klansmen and Neo-Nazis arrive with weapons. Fights and shots ensue, leaving five CWP members dead and 10 injured. One Klan/Nazis is wounded by friendly fire. Criminal trials in 1980 and 1984 for fourteen Klan and Nazis members - 6 tried for first-degree murder - are found Not Guilty, all counts. In 1985 a $48 million civil suit against 65 defendants under federal conspiracy and state wrongful death and assault and battery statutes is settled when the City of Greensboro consents to pay $351,500 to the estate of slain CWP member, Michael Nathan.
    • 1982: An all-day paper titled, Greensboro News & Record is introduced.
    • 1982: Jefferson Standard celebrates its 75th anniversary.
    • 1982: Revolution Mill closes.
    • 1982: New airport terminal is completed.
    • December 16, 1982: Greensboro becomes the last major North Carolina city to adopt a district system when the City Council votes to abandon at-large elections for all council members. Starting in 1983, five will be elected from districts, with the other three members and the mayor elected at-large. Two of the districts will have black majorities.
    • Jan. 12, 1983: Former state Senator Henry E. Frye is sworn in as associate justice of the N.C. Supreme Court, becoming the first black justice in the court’s 164-year history.
    • 1985: Fire in downtown engulfs a two-block area of Davie Street.
    • 1987: Jefferson Standard and Pilot Life Insurance Co. merge to form Jefferson-Pilot Life Insurance Co.
    • 1987: Airport renamed Piedmont Triad International.
    • 1988: Construction begins on new 20-story twin tower Jefferson Building.
    • 1988: Sears, Roebuck and Co. is Greensboro’s largest employer, employing more than 4,600. Opens new catalog plant located in an office park off N.C. 68 west of the airport.
    • 1989: Nineteen-story Renaissance Plaza at 230 N. Elm Street opens.
    • 1990: The News & Record celebrates its centennial.
    • 1990: Twenty-one-story, First Union Tower (now Wachovia) opens at 300 N. Greene Street.
    • 1990: Jefferson-Pilot Tower (now Lincoln Financial) twenty-story building opens.
    • August 29, 1990: The Greensboro Historical Museum dedicates its new wing, which Director Bill Moore calls “a $1.6 million bargain.” A capital campaign drive combined with 1985 bond funds paid for two exhibit galleries, a lecture hall, meeting room and classroom. The museum is undergoing a $7 million renovation.
    • 1991: Cone Mills Corp observes its 100th anniversary.
    • 1991: RF Micro Devices is founded by William Pratt, Powell Seymour and Jerry Neal.
    • 1991: Greensboro voted All-American City.
    • December 3, 1992: Despite cold, windy weather, more than 3,500 people take part in a candlelight walk that has raised more than $100,000 to fight AIDS, which affects about 2,800 Guilford County residents in 1992. The walk ends at the coliseum, where a quilt whose squares memorialize local people who have died from AIDS is displayed.
    • 1993: Carolyn Allen becomes the city’s first female mayor.
    • 1993: Saturday, October 23, Woolworth’s lunch counter stops serving food.
    • 1993: Sears closes Catalog Merchandise Center on Lawndale Drive. 1100 lose jobs.
    • 1994: On Jan 22, Elm Street Woolworth's closes.
    • 1994: Sit-in Movement, Inc. is founded by Skip Alston and Earl Jones.
    • 1998: Newly built central library opens at Church and Friendly.
    • 1998: VF moves headquarters to Greensboro.
    • 1998: Nano-Tex, the research arm for Burlington Industries, is founded.
    • 1998: FedEx picks PTI for a $300 million air-cargo hub.
    • 1999: Burlington Industries begins producing denim at its newest plant in Mexico, and begins a restructuring program, laying off nearly 3,000 workers and reshuffling business segments.
    • 2000: Work begins on the Painter Boulevard loop. Named for P.C. Painter, Greensboro's first city manager, the highway will range from four to eight lanes. The 41-mile circle will not be complete until well after 2006. Once completed, the Urban Loop will mean drivers can circle the city. Interstate 73 will provide a north-south highway the length of the county. Interstate 74 will connect the county with Winston-Salem and points northwest.
    • 2001: The Millennium Gate is dedicated at Phill G. McDonald Plaza. A committee took ideas from the public and decided which events or people from the past 1,000 years influenced Greensboro most. Seventeen artists designed icons to represent these ideas, and Greensboro sculptor Jim Gallucci and his employees built the gate.
    • 2001: Construction on the Randleman Lake Dam begins.
    • Aug.2001:Ground was broken on the new Kathleen Price Bryan Family YMCA on West Market Street downtown.The $9.5 million Y, which replaced the existing Central YMCA five blocks west.The new Y is named after the wife of the late philanthropist Joe Bryan, whose money established the Bryan Foundation after his death. The foundation contributed $1.5 million toward buying the site and $1 million toward construction.The Bryan Y will occupy the location where the city's main YMCA stood from 1925 until the late 1960s.
    • September 2001: Sandy Bradshaw, a flight attendant from Greensboro working on United Flight 93, helps thwart the 9/11 hijackers’ plan, crashing the plane into a Pennsylvania field.
    • Dec 2002: A major ice storm strikes the Piedmont, leaving tens of thousands without heat, light and power for days. The ice storm is blamed for 30 deaths statewide, most of them traffic-related. Four Triad residents die — two from traffic accidents, one from carbon monoxide poisoning and another from a house fire. Century-old oak trees are destroyed by the ice storm.
    • Feb 2002: Action Greensboro’s plans to help finance downtown residential projects could speed the pace of revitalization. Of the $37 million in private money it plans to spend to generate jobs and revitalize downtown, the nonprofit earmarks $1.5 million for housing incentives.
    • 2003: Pilot Life celebrates 100th anniversary. The company ranks 11th among life insurance companies in the United States.
    • July 2003: Financier Wilbur Ross wins a six-hour bidding battle for bankrupt Burlington Industries and expects a federal bankruptcy judge to approve the results. Ross wins with a bid of $620.08 million.
    • Sep 2003: The announcement that Cone Mills has filed for bankruptcy opens the way for financier Wilbur Ross to buy the company –– one of the city’s oldest and most revered businesses –– for $90 million.
    • Sep 2003: The Rev. Michael King resigns as president and chief executive officer of Project Homestead, the nonprofit home builder whose costs and spending of taxpayer money have come under increasing criticism.
    • Mar 2004: Cone Mills and Burlington Industries merge. The new private company is called International Textile Group (ITG).
    • 2005: 430,000-square foot former Burlington Industries headquarters building on West Friendly Ave is imploded, the site cleared and a retail center, called The Shops at Friendly Center will be built.
    • 2005: Greensboro Police Department: In June, after a police lieutenant is placed on paid administrative leave he accuses the department’s Special Intelligence Section of targeting him and other black officers. In autumn, the interim city manager orders a review of allegations against Special Intelligence and hires a consultant to help with the investigation. Two high-ranking officers retire and in Dec. the police chief is striped of his authority to fire or transfer employees.
    • Oct 2005: Employees trickle out of the Jefferson-Pilot building on Market Street and head to the Carolina Theatre to hear news they already know: Lincoln National has bought their company.
    • Oct 2005: Gov. Mike Easley, local officials and company executives join Michael Dell, founder of the world’s largest personal computer company, in officially opening the firm’s largest plant.
    • 2006: The Shops at Friendly Center opens with 300,000 square feet of upscale shops and restaurants. New merchants include Brooks Brothers, Coldwater Creek and REI.
    • Jan 2006: Police Chief David A. Wray resigns amid turmoil over a “secret police” unit, irregularities in personnel matters and an independent report investigating possible misconduct on the part of some department leaders.
    • Aug 2006: Elon Law School enrolls its inaugural class.
    • Nov 1, 2006: More that 1,000 students from Eastern Guilford High School have to be relocated after an afternoon firereducedthe building to rubble.
    • Dec 2006: Center City Park, a privately built $12 million park opens.
    • Mar 2007: More than 22,000 fans hear Chris Daughtry and band in a free concert in downtown Greensboro.
    • May 2007: A nanotechnology school planned for Guilford County should get nearly $4 million to begin its development, state House leaders recommend. The project between UNCG and N.C. A&T is located on the Millennium Campus near Lee Street and Interstate 40/Business 85.
    • Jun 2007: Honda Aircraft Co. announces it will start fast-track construction of its headquarters. This first phase of the $100 million project is expected to be complete in March or April 2008. Honda Aircraft Co. will invest $60 million for its world headquarters and other facilities at Piedmont Triad International Airport, where it will manufacture its HondaJet. Employment will exceed 300, with salaries averaging more than $70,000.
    • Nov 2007: Yvonne Johnson is elected first African-American Mayor of Greensboro.
    • Dec 2007: All of Guilford County falls into the worst drought category, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor. The record setting drought causes mandatory water restrictions.
    • Jan 2008: Skybus airline begins operations (opens hub) in Greensboro and is expected to create as many as 375 jobs and invest more than $350 million in aircraft and other equipment in the Triad. The airline was lured to PTI with an incentives package that could possibly total more than $56.8 million. Skybus ceases operations on April 5, 2008.
    • March 26, 2008: A statue of Gen. Nathanael Greene is unveiled in the roundabout at Greene and McGee streets. The 11½-foot-tall bronze statue is a gift to the city from the Joseph M. Bryan Foundation. Senator Barack Obama hosts a Town Hall Meeting at War Memorial Auditorium during his Presidential campaign tour.
    • May 17, 2008: “Parade of Decades” marks the final event for the city’s bicentennial observance.
    • Sept. 27, 2008: An estimated crowd of 18,000 at the J. Douglas Galyon Depot in downtown Greensboro greets Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama and his running mate Sen. Joe Biden.
    • Nov 2008: Democrat Kay Hagan, often described as a “little-known” state senator by national media, defeats one of the lions of the Republican Party, unseating U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Dole.
    • July 18, 2009: One hundred years since The Greensboro Daily News, the morning paper, was founded.
    • Nov 2009: Bill Knight elected Greensboro mayor. Yvonne Johnson is the first mayor to lose reelection bid since the mayor was elected by the public in 1973.
    • Feb 2010: Greensboro celebrates the 50th anniversary of the Greensboro Sit-Ins with the opening of the International Civil Rights Center & Museum.
    • Jun 2010: FedEx dedicates a new 9,000-foot runway for its East Coast sorting hub at Piedmont Triad International Airport.
    • Nov 2010: Dell shuts down the production lines at its plant, ending a six-year run that failed to reach its economic potential.
    • Dec 25, 2010: Greensboro has a white Christmas. Snow started falling on Greensboro and most of the Triad about 1 p.m. Christmas day and kept falling into the night, with an accumulation of about 6 inches.It was the first time snow fell on Greensboro on Christmas Day since 1947, according to the National Weather Service.
    • Nov 2011: Robbie Perkins ousts Bill Knight as mayor, 57 percent to 43 percent.
    • Nov 2013: Nancy Vaughan elected mayor.
    • Nov 19, 2014: Community Foundation of Greater Greensboro breaks ground for new $10 million Carolyn and Maurice LeBauer Park, which is expected to be completed in spring 2016.
    • 2015: Construction set to begin on the Tanger Performing Arts Centerin Oct.
    • Aug. 5, 2016: The first phase of the $34 million Union Square Campus opened. The new 85,000-square-foot building anchors the south end of downtown Greensboro. UNC-Greensboro, N.C. A&T, Guilford Technical Community College and Cone Health partnered as tenants of a jointly owned state-of-the-art center for the training and development of nurses.
    • Aug. 8, 2016: Downtown (Davie Street)Carolyn & Maurice LeBauer Park opens.
      * The original spelling of Greensboro was Greensborough.


    Compiled by Diane Lamb, News & Record Researcher

    Sources: Greensboro, North Carolina by Ethel Stephens Arnett, U. of North Carolina Press, 1955. Greensboro, An Architectural Record, by Marvin A. Brown, Preservation Greensboro, Inc.,1995. Codename Greenkil by Elizabeth Wheaton, U. of Georgia Press. 1987.; Greensboro Public Library files; Report from the North Carolina State Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights; Greensboro Historical Museum; News & Record archive.

    Also see Greensboro Neighborhoods