A blog from Special Collections and University Archives
On October 24, 1993, a plaque was dedicated in Randall Library to commemorate and honor the members of the Order of Isaac Bear, an honorary organization of the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Former Chancellor William H. Wagoner founded the organization as a way to recognize members of the UNCW faculty. These members of the faculty had taught in the Isaac Bear building on Market Street, the original location of Wilmington College later UNCW, and were still employed by UNCW in 1987. The original Isaac Bear building had been an elementary school before it was home to Wilmington College. The former elementary school, Bear Hall on our current campus, and the Order of Isaac Bear were all named in honor of Isaac Bear, the brother of a local businessman.
As inscribed on the plaque, "Founded in 1988, the Order recognizes those who have demonstrated loyalty to UNCW, contributed to the academic quality of the University, or had a significant role in uniting the institution and the community." Listed are charter members Louis Adcock, Mary Bellamy, Walter Biggs, William Brooks, Thomas Brown, Joanne Corbett, Marshall Crews, Calvin Doss, Thomas Lupton, Dorothy Marshall, Duncan Randall, Gerald Rosselet, and Doug Swink. Chancellor Wagoner had an honorary membership.
In 1991, the Order expanded membership beyond faculty members who worked at Wilmington College on Market Street. Members of the staff and faculty who had contributed to the development of UNCW are invited to the Order. Associate memberships are for people who aided in the founding of the institution and for members of the Board of Trustees.
40 years ago, three musical acts--the Stories, Lynyrd Skynard, and Heather--played in Hanover Hall at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. The venue had a newly installed sound system for the event. Tickets for students were $2.50 in advance or $3.50 at the door.
At the time of the performance the Stories was the biggest name of the three. They had previously released two albums both of which were well reviewed by the music world including Rolling Stone. The group had one popular hit with “Brother Louie.” Wes Knape, a Seahawk newspaper writer, wrote that this had been “a really great song when it was released; however...most of us are tired of it being played so often.”
Lynyrd Skynard had only released their first album in August of 1973 and had not built up their popularity. Even though they were not nationally recognized, music critics had already begun to hail them as the next big hit to come out of the South. This would prove correct as they would become nationally recognized shortly following their performance at UNCW.
According to students interviewed by the Seahawk, the concert did not exceed their expectations, especially the band Stories. The Seahawk published the thoughts of six students, one of whom did not even attend the concert. The students stated that the new sound system was “out of wack” as the instruments were louder than the vocals. Another complaint was the high number of high school students in the audience. One student protested the high cost of the ticket and suggested bringing in local bands to lower the cost, while another student complained that the bands brought in should be more “well known” and represent a greater variety of musical styles.
Jordan began his association with Washington Wizards as president and minority owner in 2000. In October of the same year, he brought the NBA team to the University of North Carolina Wilmington for their training camp. A sold out crowd watched the team at the end of their week-long stay in Trask Coliseum. At that time, the Wizards announced plans to return to UNCW in 2001 for their training camp. This move was anticipated by the Wilmington community, but the excitement and anticipation reached a high when Jordan announced that he would return to the NBA as a Washington Wizards player for the 2001 season.
UNCW was immediately launched into national and international news as it would serve as the location where Jordan would make his latest debut. News media from around the country, including ESPN, came to UNCW to cover the event. The event was highly publicized and well received in the community as a whole, but one UNCW student expressed parking-related grievances against the commotion caused by the visit.
Jordan played again with the Washington Wizards in Trask Coliseum in 2002. In later years, when Jordan was affiliated with the Charlotte Bobcats, UNCW welcomed this club for training camps.
See also: news articles about Michael Jordan's summer basketball camp at UNCW in 1987.
The North Carolina General Assembly passed the Safe Roads Act of 1983 and stipulated that the law would become effective on October 1, 1983. The law had many parts, but it most specifically dealt with drunk driving. The law raised the drinking age in North Carolina from 18 to 19 for beer and wine. The United States Congress would further increase the drinking age nationally the next year with the National Minimum Drinking Age Act of 1984, 23 USC § 158, which mandated that states raise the drinking age to 21 or the government would withhold ten percent of the federal funding for highways. North Carolina complied with the federal law.
Many students at the University of North Carolina Wilmington voiced opposition and protested the fairness of the new law. The Seahawk published editorials against the Safe Roads Act. The treasurer of the SGA even wrote, in an open letter published in the Seahawk on April 16, 1981, that one of the greatest accomplishments of the group during the 1981-1982 school year had been a resolution passed to stand in opposition of the law.
While many UNCW students stood in oppostion the administration and the campus police saw the change as a positive, because drinking and parties involving alcohol had become a problem for the school and had begun to tarnish the image of UNCW. Student drinking continued to plague the administration for the years to come.