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BIG CITY: Test your downtown knowledge

By Kirk Ross

This is that time of year when the streets are teeming with new residents. It’s when the old Chapel Hill lightbulb joke is most apt.

Q: How many Chapel Hillians does it take to change a lightbulb?

A: Four. One to change the bulb and three to talk about how cool the old lightbulb was.

In a town with built-in tides of change, clinging to the old and cherishing what was is tradition. Here are some questions about downtown Chapel Hill and Carrboro in various eras that are sure to include stumpers for nearly everyone, maybe even a few of you natives.

1. Heading from campus toward Hillsborough, the streets in order are Cameron, Franklin, Rosemary and what?

2. Two men who have run establishments downtown have had the nickname “Papa D.” What are their actual names and their establishments?

3. Name two bookstores that were located in the 100 block of either East or West Franklin.

4. Where did Marty Ravellette hang out in the mornings?

5. Where was the Sidetrack tavern?

6. Where did the sidetrack it was named for go to?

7. Name one of the two people who tackled Wendell Williamson and the intersection where it happened.

8. Where did former Chapel Hill Mayor Jimmy Wallace teach?

9. What large downtown structure is named for him?

10. Where and when was the first civil rights Chapel Hill sit-in?

11. Say something Cat Baby would say.

12. Carrboro used to have a Western Auto store. Where was it?

13. What was the first name of the late, great Friendly Barber?

14. In what famed Chapel Hill clothing store did Doug Clark and the Hot Nuts play on Hot Diggity Days?

15. What building is named for Doug’s mother?

16. Where was the Dairy Bar?

17. What is the name of the big hill you travel down heading east from downtown on Franklin Street?

18. What is the shared last name of Bill, Matt, Sheila and Moreton?

19. When did Julian Carr buy the mill in Carrboro?

20. What did Professor Venable teach?

21. Where is “Chapel Hill’s Oldest Tavern?”

22. Whereabouts on the hill was the original New Hope Chapel?

23. The parade of history mural in Porthole Alley ends with a sink and the signature “R Mutt.” What does this name refer to?

24. Where was the first automatic traffic signal in Chapel Hill located?

Good luck. Answers next week.

  1. Michael Layden

    All good questions. I only know a few of these. Looking forward to the answers. Ahh Cat baby…