Should UNC’s ‘Silent Sam’ Share the Recent Fate of Confederate Flags?

As Confederate flags quickly disappear from public spaces and stores in the wake of the Charleston murders, the debate over Confederate symbols has turned to monuments. One UNC historian says there’s no doubt a monument on UNC’s campus represents the old, ugly attitude of white supremacy.

Fitzhugh Brundage is a William B. Umstead professor of history at UNC-Chapel Hill.

“I think it’s possible to distinguish between different types of monuments,” Brundage told WCHL recently. “A monument like Silent Sam, for example, was intended to speak to the contemporary generation of young North Carolina men who were attending the University of North Carolina.

“And when Julian Carr gave the dedication speech in 1913, he very explicitly – very unambiguously – linked that monument to the defense of white supremacy.”

READ MORE: Hillsborough votes to leave Hillsborough Confederate Memorial in Place.

That speech was quoted in part by University Affairs Committee Chair Alston Gardner, at a March 25 meeting at UNC’s Rizzo Conference Center to discuss renaming Saunders Hall, whose namesake, William L. Saunders, was a Confederate colonel and Ku Klux Klan leader before serving as North Carolina’s secretary of state.

Industrialist Julian Shakespeare Carr was a former Confederate soldier and major benefactor in the founding of Duke University. The Town of Carrboro was named in his honor. Gardner quoted perhaps the most-repeated line of Carr’s speech for the unveiling of the “Silent Sam” Confederate soldier statue 102 years ago at McCorkle Place, facing Franklin Street.

“He ended his speech with a personal anecdote citing his pride at having ‘horsewhipped a negro wench until her skirts hung in shreds’ nearby the monument,” Gardner said.

Brundage, who advises the website Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina, says there are more than 100 monuments to the Confederacy throughout North Carolina. Most were erected between 1895 and 1935. The group most responsible for that was The United Daughters of the Confederacy, founded in 1894.

Many Confederate memorials erected prior to 1890 were placed in cemeteries.

“That’s where context is very important,” said Brundage. “There are Confederate memorials in cemeteries that I have to assume most people would accept as expressions of grief and respect for the dead.”

READ MORE: Chansky’s Notebook: Flaunting the Flag.

Public memorials such as Silent Sam, he said, were mostly created with a very different intent. Those, he said, were intended to be didactic – not just about loss and grief, but about the redemption of the Confederate cause.

“After about 1895, more and more of the monuments were erected in public spaces, in front of courthouses, conspicuous thoroughfares, et cetera,” said Brundage. “And those monuments had a much broader goal, which was to impose, if you will, a Confederate version of the past on the public, as a whole.”

In May, the UNC Board of Trustees voted to rename Saunders Hall as Carolina Hall, and imposed a 16-year freeze on renaming historical buildings, monuments, memorials, and landscapes to allow for education and curation to take effect.

WCHL contacted UNC Director of Media Relations Jim Gregory by email Wednesday for a statement about Silent Sam, in light of recent events. The statue has inspired many debates over the years.

Gregory replied that he was not aware of any discussions going on right now about Silent Sam.

UNC Board of Governors Member Arrested in Alleged Domestic Assault

A member of the UNC Board of Governors was arrested in May for misdemeanor assault of a female, according to police reports.

61-year-old R. Doyle Parrish was arrested at his home on Kingsley Road in Raleigh on May 12 after a report was filed by his wife Nancy Parrish, who was listed as the victim. Parrish was charged with simple assault.

Parrish was appointed to a four-year term on the Board of Governors by the North Carolina House in 2013.

National Institute for Money in State Politics figures show that Parrish donated to campaigns for Thom Tillis, Pat McCrory, Phil Berger, Bev Perdue, and Mike Easley, according to WRAL.

The News & Observer of Raleigh reports Parrish was ordered to be held in the Wake County Jail on a mandatory domestic violence hold for two days. A district court judge on May 18 ordered Parrish released on his promise to appear at his next court date and ordered him to stay away from his wife.

The Wake County Court Calendar shows Parrish’s next court appearance is slated for August 26th.

A UNC System spokesperson says they “have no comment to offer.”

Legacy of Dean Smith to Live On Through Award

The University of North Carolina and the United States Basketball Writers Association announced a new award to honor Dean Smith on Wednesday.

USBWA President and Yahoo! Sports writer Pat Forde says that there was one overwhelming feeling he had when approached about the idea of the Dean Smith Award during the Final Four.

“My first thought though is, ‘what took us so long?’ he asked. “We should have done this 15 years ago probably, at least.”

Past Basketball Writers Association President and Washington Post Columnist John Feinstein says the award will have nothing to do with wins and losses.

“We’re going to search for a person each year who Dean would be proud to present the award to, if he were still here,” he says. “That’s our criteria.”

Current Tar Heel head coach Roy Williams says the fact the award will focus on off-the-court accomplishments is a perfect encapsulation of Coach Smith.

“Contributions that he made off the court are probably millions of times more significant than the games that were won, the championships that were won, or anything like that,” Williams says. “I do think that it’s very fitting.”

Scott Smith, Dean’s son, says that his dad would handle this with the same humility as always.

“Dad would not want an award named for him,” Smith says. “I think he would want people to be acknowledged for doing similar things.

“Doing the right thing and not just because you’re going to get something for it, but because you should.”

Smith coached 36 seasons at North Carolina, winning two national championships and an Olympic gold medal and appearing in 11 Final Fours. He retired in 1997 with 879 victories, which at the time were the most by any basketball coach in Division I history. But he is equally remembered for his work to integrate Chapel Hill and other social issues.

In 2013, Smith was honored by President Barack Obama with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian honor.

Smith passed away in February at age 83.

UNC Spokesperson Steve Kirschner says a banquet will be held later this year in Chapel Hill to honor the first recipient of the award.

Proceeds from the dinner will benefit the Dean E. Smith Opening Doors Fund, which assists students from low-income families in attending college and professionals in education and social work – two fields close to Coach Smith’s heart – in pursuing advanced degrees.

Memorial Service for UNC Dean Emeritus

A memorial service is scheduled for 10 o’clock Wednesday morning honoring UNC School of Journalism Dean Emeritus John “Jack” Adams.

Adams, who served as Dean of the UNC School of Journalism from 1969 through 1979, died on Friday after a brief illness at the age of 95.

Adams was a member of the North Carolina Journalism Hall of Fame and served as a professor at UNC from 1958 through 1985.

Adams remained in Chapel Hill following his retirement in 1985 with his wife P.B., who died in 2003.

Adams is survived by two children and three grandchildren.

The memorial service is scheduled to take place at the Ponder Auditorium at Croasdaile Village Retirement Community in Durham.

In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting memorial contributions be directed to the John B Adams Student Emergency Fund at the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication. After clicking the link, select the fund’s name in the drop-down menu.

UNC Professor: If Education is Most Important, “You Stay Here”

Allisha Gray is one of three members of last year’s UNC Women’s Basketball team that will be playing for a different university next year. Reports say Gray was concerned about the reputation of her degree amidst the academic scandal at Carolina.

Journalism Professor Charlie Tuggle tells WCHL’s Blake Hodge more about the conversation he had with Gray and his feelings on Carolina athletic programs in general.

UNC Golfer Wins NC Amateur Tournament

A member of the Carolina men’s golf team got a come-from-behind victory over the weekend.

Carter Jenkins, who will be a junior at UNC next year, eagled the 17th hole to take the lead in the final round and held on for a come-from-behind victory in the 2015 North Carolina Amateur Golf Championship played at the Country Club of Landfall’s Jack Nicklaus Course.

Jenkins finished the four-day event at 11 under par, one shot ahead of Guilford College head coach Justin Tereshko. The win was Jenkins’ seventh Carolinas Golf Association title. He also has won two CGA Amateurs, the North Carolina Junior Amateur and a North Carolina Match Play Amateur.

The Raleigh native entered Sunday’s fourth and final round in second place, trailing Tereshko by three shots. Jenkins fired a four-under-par 68, the second-best round of the day and one of only 12 rounds Sunday played below par.

Defending champion Josh Martin of Pinehurst finished 16th. Martin will be a freshman on the UNC men’s golf and a teammate of Jenkins, next season.

Jenkins played in seven events for the Tar Heels this spring after transferring mid-year from UNCG. He finished a season-best fourth at the Lamkin San Diego Classic and was Carolina’s second-low scorer at the NCAA Chapel Hill Regional.

Jenkins will next play in the North-South Amateur on June 29-July 3 at Pinehurst No. 2.

Former UNC Chancellor William Aycock Dies at 99

Legal educator and former UNC chancellor William Aycock has died at age 99.

Aycock taught for more than four decades at the UNC School of Law, retiring as the Kenan Professor of Law in 1985. He led the university as chancellor from 1957 to 1964 during a time of rapid expansion and growing social unrest.

Amongst his many achievements, he is credited with hiring Dean Smith to coach the men’s basketball team in the wake of a scandal involving recruiting violations during the 1960-61 season.

Born in 1915, Aycock grew up in Selma, North Carolina. He married his wife Grace in 1941, shortly before leaving to serve in the United States Army. During World War II he attained the rank of colonel and earned the Bronze Star, the Silver Star, and the Legion of Merit as battalion commander in the 87th Infantry Division.

He was also much lauded during his academic career. Aycock was the first to win the UNC School of Law’s McCall Teaching Award. He went on to receive the Thomas Jefferson Award; the Distinguished Service Medal from the UNC-Chapel Hill General Alumni Association; and the University Award from The University of North Carolina Board of Governors, to name only a few.

The university announced on Father’s Day that Aycock had passed away on Saturday.

Hillsborough Hospital To Begin Phased Opening in July

UNC Health Care’s new 68-bed hospital in Hillsborough has all the services you might expect, including an emergency department, medical imaging, operating rooms and a critical care unit.

The interior, however, is more Martha Stewart than Marcus Welby, M.D.

“It doesn’t have that sterile hospital appearance, and that’s purposeful,” says Jeff Strickler, associate vice president for the Hillsborough campus. “We’re trying to create something that’s warm and inviting with a focus on healing and wellness.”

The four-story building boasts lots of windows and lots of light. There’s a soft color palette and a North Carolina nature theme throughout.

“The first floor is coastal, the middle levels are the Piedmont region, and the upper floors are the mountain region, so all the art and all the wayfinding match that theme,” explains Strickler.

HB Hosp WindowsTurning the corner around a hallway, sunlight appears to filter into the hospital through a grove of birch trees. It’s an optical illusion provided by a decorative window film spread floor to ceiling. On every floor there are glass panels and walls covered with similar nature scenes that let in light, but also grant privacy.

In addition, Strickler says local art helps provide an antidote to the antiseptic décor of older institutions.

“You’ll see photographs, pastels, watercolors, oils, 3D pieces of art,” says Strickler, gesturing to shelves that currently sit empty. “We’re really pleased to have that. It creates a healing environment.”

The new medical campus on Waterstone Drive has been six years in the making. Strickler says it’s a community hospital designed to serve a range of needs. While the emergency department is expected to treat up to 15,000 patients a year, much of the focus will be on elective surgeries.

That’s because several practices currently housed at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill will relocate to Hillsborough.

“It is sort of a surgically-leaning community hospital,” says Strickler. “This is where UNC is going to have a lot of our elective surgical practices. Our joint replacement surgeries will be done here, our elective spinal surgeries will be done here, opthamology cases and pretty much all of our non-cancer gynecological cases will be done here.”

That’s likely good news for many patients. In Chapel Hill, those needing joint replacement or spinal surgery must navigate parking decks, ramps and a lengthy pedestrian bridge to get to the hospital. In Hillsborough, they’ll be able to park just outside the front entrance.

Strickler says the Hillsborough campus design incorporates lessons learned at UNC’s older hospitals about what patients and their families need in times of illness and recovery.

“The patient experience is real important here at this facility, but also the family experience. One example of that is for the Intensive Care Unit, given the types of patients we may have, we have a family suite, and that’s a new concept.”

The family suite is like a mini-hotel room adjacent to the ICU, with two bedrooms, a common area and a kitchenette, where relatives of a patient can stay for a short time.

“This is really for a unique situation where you’ve got multiple family members in, or perhaps you’ve got people coming from a long distance and we’ve not yet made arrangements for them to go to a hotel,” says Strickler. “Their loved one may be struggling through the night and they can be close.”

The medical offices are already open, but the hospital itself is not yet ready to admit patients. There are still curtains to be hung, walls to be painted, equipment to be tested and art to install. Nonetheless, Strickler says the emergency room will open its doors in less than a month.

“The hospital is fully open August 31, that’s when we start the inpatient services, but as a service to the community we wanted to get some other things here earlier, so the emergency department is planning to open at 7 a.m. on July 6.”

Mavunga Granted Release from UNC

UNC Women’s Basketball Forward Stephanie Mavunga has been granted a release and allowed to speak with other schools about the possibility of transferring, the university announced Friday.

Mavuna is following former teammates Diamon DeShields, Jessica Washington, and Allisha Gray leaving the Tar Heel program. The four players made up the number one recruiting class of 2013.

It was announced earlier Friday that Gray would be transferring to South Carolina.

Washington’s decision to transfer was made public last month.

DeShields transferred from UNC after the 2013-2014 basketball season.

The news of Gray’s transfer and Mavunga’s permission to seek a transfer follows the NCAA Notice of Allegations and heavy ties to the women’s basketball program.

Mavunga was named first team All-ACC after leading the Tar Heels in rebounding at 9.6 per game and scoring more than 14 points per game, second on UNC’s roster only behind Gray – the new Gamecock.

Gray Transferring to South Carolina

Allisha Gray has completed her transfer from the UNC Women’s Basketball program by choosing to enroll at the University of South Carolina, the Gamecocks announced Friday.

South Carolina Head Coach Dawn Staley said in a prepared statement that Gray’s “hard work and intensity on both ends of the floor will be a great addition to our family.”

Gray led UNC in scoring last year as a sophomore with nearly 16 points per game. She was second on the team with 7.6 rebounds per game.

UNC announced the university had granted Gray a release from her scholarship earlier this week.

Now only Stephanie Mavunga remains from the 2013 recruiting class which was ranked number one in the country. The class included Mavunga, Gray, Jessica Washington, and Diamond DeShields.

UNC announced Washington’s transfer last month, and Diamond DeShields transferred from Carolina last year.

The women’s basketball program was heavily mentioned in the NCAA Notice of Allegations that was released earlier this month.

Gray will have two year of eligibility remaining beginning with the 2016-2017 season, after sitting out one year due to NCAA protocol.

Gray is one of three players from ACC programs transferring to South Carolina next year, joining Sarah Imobvioh from Virginia and Kaela Davis from Georgia Tech.