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Trail of History

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MISSION

To recapture and preserve the significance of key people who contributed to the history, growth, and development of Mecklenburg County by erecting larger than life representative statues along the urban section of the Little Sugar Creek Greenway.


VISION

To establish a Mecklenburg Trail of History comprised of statues within the context of the Little Sugar Creek Greenway.


VISIT THE TRAIL OF HISTORY

Directions to Parking for Evening and Weekend Events
From Charlottetown Avenue (formerly Independence Blvd.), proceed on 4th Street towards King's and Uptown Charlotte. Turn right into the driveway to the second parking deck, labeled as Employee Parking and Theatre Parking. Overflow parking is available on Elizabeth Avenue across Kings towards Uptown before one crosses under I-277.

Parking at Thompson Park (St. Mary's Chapel)
Parking is available Monday through Thursday except during events.
No parking Friday through Sunday.
Use signalized crosswalk to go to Captain Jack.


PROJECT HISTORY

In 2005, the Little Sugar Creek Greenway Action Committee asked Dr. Dan Morrill and a group of local historians to recommend a list of key people who during their life made a significant impact on the development of Mecklenburg County.  The Spirit of Mecklenburg , a larger than life statue of Captain James Jack, was selected to be the first statue for the Charlotte Trail of History.  Captain Jack has become a legendary figure in the annals of Charlotte-Mecklenburg history for his famous ride to Philadelphia carrying the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence and a set of resolves to the 1775 meeting of the Continental Congress.  

Captain Jack - Photo by Nancy Pierce

Captain Jack Statue in Charlotte - Photo by Nancy Pierce

         
The Trail of History is a collection of privately-subsidized bronze sculptures, or similar permanent material, memorializing the men and women who shaped and defined the rich history of Charlotte-Mecklenburg.  It is a long-term project involving the design, fundraising and construction of the sculptures.  The Trail of History will stretch through the signature urban piece of the Little Sugar Creek Greenway running from 7th Street at Central Piedmont Community College south to Morehead Street.

The Little Sugar Creek Greenway Urban Section provides a unique opportunity for increasing community awareness of Mecklenburg County's history and culture through the integration of the proposed Trail of History sculptures.  In return, the Trail of History will play an essential role in increasing community involvement with the greenway.

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PROJECT OVERVIEW

As the Trail of History continues to develop, the History Committee will be responsible for final selection of the figures who will be memorialized.  The goal of each individual piece will contribute to the experience of the public space by attracting pedestrians, improving and animating the public space, expressing local identity, and helping to develop community spirit and pride; interactive art is to be encouraged as appropriate to the character and site.

The sculptures will create an experience which presents a positive image of the contributions of our ancestors to this community and will provide a sense of civic pride providing context to a growing community.  The Trail of History will serve as an anchoring reference point and "heart" of the community located adjacent to Center City Charlotte.  It will enhance the greenway as a destination providing complementary features integrated into the corridor for citizens to interact and enjoy the environment and outdoor activities along the greenway

The Trail of History will be a special place where newcomers may learn of their new community, its history, where business prospects may gain an appreciation of their potential home, and where school children may be educated, via a walking tour through time, to role models and visionary advocates who shaped and formed the continuum of life in their home county.  It's location along the Little Sugar Creek Greenway will become a nationally-recognized and distinctive venue demonstrating the community's commitment to her cultural heritage.

Plans include a Greenway Guide to Public Art that would be made available using the best media options available which might include: printed brochure, Greenway signage, and virtual form and include links to greenway and trail of history oriented web sites. Interpretive signage and donor recognition signage for the sculptures must follow the Little Sugar Creek Greenway Wayfinding Guidelines.

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LOCATION

Little Sugar Creek is a 16 mile natural treasure that runs through the heart of Charlotte-Mecklenburg.  Parts of Little Sugar Creek were straightened, rerouted and covered by parking lots during the growth over the past century.  Under the leadership of citizens and elected officials, Mecklenburg County Government is working to restore and preserve this natural treasure.  Mecklenburg County will build a greenway along the creek which will provide miles of biking trails, habitat restoration, and greater connectivity to the surrounding communities.  The Little Sugar Creek Greenway begins in Cordelia Park in North Charlotte, travels past uptown and historic neighborhoods and ends at the NC/SC State Line.

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BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Chairman
Dr. Tony Zeiss
Central Piedmont Community College

Vice Chairman
Charles R. Jonas, III
The May 20th Society

David Taylor
Gantt Center

Alvin M. Brown, Jr.
Partners for Parks, Inc.

Gwen Cook
Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation

George S. Dewey, IV
The May 20th Society

Tricia Boyer
Arts and Science Council

Meg McElwain
Magnolia Marketing

Ron Haskins
Wells Fargo

Elizabeth Murphy, CPA
Dixon-Hughes PLLC

Thomas E. Norman
NORCOM Development, Inc.

Beth Poovey
LandDesign, Inc.

Gary Ritter
Central Piedmont Community College

Chase Saunders
Mecklenburg Historical Association

Scott Syfert
Moore & Van Allen

Agnes Weisiger
Community Volunteer

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PROJECT PARTNERS

Arts and Science Council       
Central Piedmont Community College
The May 20th Society
Partners for Parks
Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department
Mecklenburg County
The Rotary Club of Charlotte

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