Chapel Hill, NC fire truck Here are some fun facts about Chapel Hill and Durham that you might not know.

  • In Chapel Hill, fire engines have been Carolina blue, and not the traditional red, since 1996.
  • UNC Chapel Hill is the oldest public university in the United States. The school was founded in 1789.
  • The Morehead Planetarium was the first planetarium in the south and a NASA training facility from 1960-1975.
  • 73.5% of adult Chapel Hill residents hold a Bachelors degree or higher, based on the most recent us Census data from 2012. This is higher than both the national average (just under 40%) and North Carolina’s statewide average (just under 30%).
  • 7.8 million people visited Durham in 2011 (source: Durham Convention and Visitors’ Bureau).
  • Durham is called the City of Medicine for a reason: it is home to over 300 health and medical related businesses.
  • Before Europeans arrived, the area now known as Durham was occupied by two tribes of Native Americans who farmed the area: the Eno and the Occanecchi.
  • William Hayes Ackland, the Founder of the Ackland Art Museum (which is part of UNC Chapel Hill), is buried in the museum, based on his final request. Ackland had no connection to UNC and had originally made his bequest to Duke University, but Duke was unwilling to grant the request to inter him within the museum.
  • Chapel Hill was originally named after the hill that once served as home to New Hope Chapel. The town was initially named New Hope Chapel Hill. The Carolina Inn now sits atop that hill.
  • Durham was home to Erwin Mill, the first textile manufacturer to produce denim.
  • The City of Durham maintains over 60 public parks with over 1,800 acres of green space and over 20 miles of trails and greenways.
  • The only Rose Bowl game not played in Pasadena, CA was played in Durham in 1942. This past November, a man found a trophy in the trash that appeared to be from the 1942 Bowl game.
Posted by Larry Tollen on
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