Raleigh did you know? #funfacts

Starting a new topic just for fun. Let’s see what sort of fun facts and unusual things that we can share about our city. I’ll start.

In 1970, Raleigh’s population (122,830) was nearly identical to Macon, GA’s (122,423). I find this pretty shocking! Then again, there are dozens and dozens of cities that were larger than Raleigh at that time, but Macon being nearly equal??? :astonished:

@dtraleigh, if you think this should not a separate topic, go ahead and fuse it with another one.


When I came here in 1980, Raleigh’s population was around 150,000. Many people do not realize where Raleigh has come from. From 150,000 to close to 500,000 in forty years. That’s pretty good growth.


Right? When I moved to Raleigh in '72, it was around 110,000.

come on folks…more fun facts!

Raleigh schools were full integrated in the fall of 1973?
When the city and county schools were merged in the mid-70s, city kids got an extended summer, till after labor day, so the county kids could help bring in the tobacco crop! :grin:


When I moved here 11 years ago, the tallest building in Raleigh was the PNC (RBC) tower, and there was a fountain at the end of Fayetteville St!


I remember the big resistance to the unified county-wide school system because of the county’s farm needs from kids. I remember that some kids in my high school class made good money picking tobacco. Until you mentioned it, I had forgotten all about that! Thanks!

  • The Raleigh beltline was once supposed to be a wall, but they decided to turn it into a roadway.
  • The Capitol building was originally to be the tomb of the wife of Gov. Montford Stokes, but the dimensions were wrong and they turned it into the seat of the state legislature.

Found this info here:


Dort Narena
I’m dying here!


When I moved here in 1987 Capital Blvd was just 2 lanes each way north of 440 and 440 itself was just 2 each way. North of what is now 540, Capital was 1 lane each way. Creedmoor was 1 lane each way along its whole length. Etc.


In 1970 Brentwood was thought of as northern edge of Raleigh


The area to the west of Capital just north of 540 used to be home to Cheviot Hills golf course. Fun course to play. Now it’s a bunch of car dealerships

Back in 1984, before AA or Midway had their hubs, New York Air had a mini hub/focus city at RDU. They had about 20 flights a day on weekdays with a reduced schedule on weekends. The mini hub only lasted a few months.


I don’t even remember New York Air being a thing. Very cool! :airplane:

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When I was born here, Raleigh’s I-540 (which is a block away on an overpass road from my house on FOX Road) to Zebulon wasn’t even finished yet it was still under construction now it about to be a full circle.

This article today seemed relevant.


Calling all ecology/botany buffs out there; does Raleigh have any particular reason to be known as “the city of oaks”? Do we actually have more or more grand oaks here than surrounding areas? Did people just plant a lot of oaks here back in the 18th and 19th century?

One interesting thing about this area not everyone might know; just west of Raleigh is an ancient rift valley caused by the splitting of N. America from Africa called the Triassic Basin. This is why the clay it’s so terrible in Cary, Morrisville, South Durham, and surrounding areas. This basin was once sunken relative to the surrounding land due to the continents pulling apart, and it filled with sediment and fossils.



Any local geologists will tell you that drilling in the Triassic Basin is a huge pain in the butt. That Carolina red clay is why there are so many red bricks produced in the area. #NCState :wolf:


yep the carolina red clay is almost; dig it up, shape it, cook it and presto you have to brick. No additional processing needed.

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Does that rift go through the RTP as well? I heard that one of the reasons RTP is where it is, is that the area has poor soil for farming, and the land was virtually unused and they were trying to find a good use for the land when they initially porposed the park.

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