One hundred and 50 years later, is the Civil War finally over?
When UNC-Chapel Hill Professor Emeritus William Powell died last week at the age of 95, North Carolina lost its dean of history. With constant help and support from his wife Virginia, he authored countless books and articles, including the preeminent history of our state, “North Carolina Through Four Centuries,” all 670 pages of it. Even though it is now 25 years since its publication, it is still the best.
Here are five recent books, starting with a novel featuring a thinly disguised Jesse Helms, by North Carolina authors to put on your bedside reading table.
If you just want to read about the incredible basketball game described by Scott Ellsworth in “The Secret Game, A Wartime Story of Courage, Change, and Basketball’s Lost Triumph,” you can skip the first 250 pages. Then you can read about that secret game played in 1944 between a team of all-white college all-stars at the Duke medical school and the North Carolina College for Negroes Eagles.
“Were you a part of the Army that made the Indians leave their homes?”
David, my 5-year-old grandson, had been learning about American Indians in his preschool.
Come on and go to Norlina with me!
Is there something special about the way we talk here in North Carolina? The best person to answer is Walt Wolfram, who has studied the speech patterns in our state since 1992 when he became the first William C. Friday Distinguished University Professor of English Linguistics at N. C. State.
If you are looking for an interesting book for springtime reading, I have four suggestions: A cookbook that will be fun to read. A book of stories from one of North Carolina’s rising stars. The story of a ’57 Chevy and its complicated, troubled and fascinating 13th owner who took it to Moyock in Currituck County for restoration. An award-winning story of a mother who writes letters to the son she gave up the day he was born.
It has been more than five years since Ron Rash first talked on North Carolina Bookwatch about his best-selling novel, “Serena.” UNC-TV is re-airing that program to coincide with the release of the movie, finally.
Last week two men claimed they had been robbed of about $5 million worth of gold bars they were transporting along Interstate 95 in Wilson County. According to their story, when they pulled over on I-95 to fix their truck or attend to an illness, three armed men appeared, took the gold, tied them up and sped away.
What is it about a 1957 Chevrolet?
Like The New York Times offering on its store page a “1957 Bel Air 50th Anniversary Edition $99.95. Numbered, limited edition of 1,957.”
Before you order, let me tell you about the North Carolina connection to the car. Make that “connections,” as there are more than one.
Each February we celebrate Valentine's Day and Black History Month.
Five years ago, when the University of North Carolina board of governors was searching for a candidate to replace Erskine Bowles, I wrote in this column, “The Board will be looking for the new president who has two critical qualifications:
1. A good feel for North Carolina’s traditions and the state’s needs, and,
2. Successful experience at the highest level of university administration.”
Jason Mott’s successful first novel, “The Returned” was a big success. Not only was it a bestseller with lots of critical acclaim, but it is the basis of an ABC television series, “Resurrection,” which completed its second 13-week series on January 25.
What are you doing to commemorate Black History Month?