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Holden Beach 10-year-old uses popcorn business to buy Christmas gifts for other kids
08/27/2016 04:57 AM
Mason MarshallPink lemonade, smoky barbecue, birthday cake, southern butter pecan and ranch are only a few of the 30-plus flavors of popcorn offered by 10-year-old Mason Marshall.

Fort Bragg launches program to reduce aggressive driving
08/27/2016 04:57 AM
Fort BraggOfficials at Fort Bragg say they're expanding a driver improvement program aimed at cutting down on aggressive and dangerous driving on post.

43-year-old pedestrian struck, killed while walking on I-40W
08/27/2016 04:50 AM
Traffic accidentA pedestrian walking on Interstate 40 westbound on Friday night was struck and killed by a vehicle, officials said.

Mike Pence coming back to Winston-Salem next week
08/26/2016 09:20 PM
Mike Pence in RaleighFresh off a campaign stop in Brunswick County Wednesday, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence will be back in North Carolina next week for a rally in Winston-Salem.

McCrory, Cooper battle for law enforcement backing
08/26/2016 09:20 PM
McCrory, Cooper debateAlthough most political observers usually discount their importance, politicians routinely tout endorsements by everybody from business groups to celebrities as empirical evidence that many people think they are most qualified for the office they're seeking.

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Raleigh Connoisseur Feed

Pic of the Week
08/24/2016 04:00 AM
This is a shot of 224 (left) and 222 (right) Fayetteville Street. 224 Fayetteville Street, or the Lewis-Woodard Building, has a fresh new front door. This is a huge contrast to the white marble, colder feeling version it had before. You can see the previous version in this April 2015 Google streetview. A little background […]

Weekend Video: Capital Boulevard Makeover
08/19/2016 04:00 AM
From the meeting this week hosted by NCDOT, the video above was being played on a loop at the Borden Building in Fred Fletcher Park Thursday evening. If you can’t see the embedded video, go here. The video is a great watch for those following this project and construction starts on Wade Avenue first this […]

The Smoky Hollow Neighborhood May Be Making a Comeback
08/16/2016 04:00 AM
Looking West down Peace Street, August 2016 What would it take for a Raleigh neighborhood of the 1900s that was completely wiped out, literally paved over, to come back? It seems naming a new development in the 2000s after it would be a start. The Smokey Hollow project will be a 12-story mixed-use project with […]

Pic of the Week
08/11/2016 04:00 AM
The latest addition to Christ Church is starting to really take shape these days. You’ve got to hand it to them for trying to make their newest expansion along Edenton Street match the historic building. They have an album of construction photos on their Flickr page. Similar Posts: Christ Church Expanding along Edenton Street (October […]

Upcoming: Smokey Hollow, Peace Street, and Seaboard Station
08/08/2016 04:00 AM
This is what it is like to take a walk downtown with @dtraleigh A photo posted by Jennifer Suarez (@jenniferraleigh) on Aug 7, 2016 at 5:42am PDT Readers of the blog should not be surprised that there is a lot of momentum coming soon to Peace Street. The Smoky Hollow project near Peace and West, […]

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Our goal is to provide you with information about the wide variety of free things to do in Raleigh, NC. With the many parks, museums, and other attractions, there's enough to keep most people busy and happy for quite a while. Browse our links, and check back soon, more content is coming online quickly.

History of Raleigh

Oak Tree Raleigh is also known as the "City of Oaks," mainly because of the numerous oak trees that adorn the entire city. Yet aside from these functions, the city is also North Carolina's capital and Wake County's seat. According to a count for July 2006, Raleigh's population is estimated to be around 353,604, thus making the capital one of America's rapidly expanding cities. In fact, Raleigh ranks fourth in the "List of Best Big Cities in 2006" by Money Magazine. Of course, anyone who is familiar with the city's history is not at all surprised by such a remarkable development. Since Raleigh is among the selected US cities intentionally developed to be a state capital, it can easily be said that the city is destined for expansion and progress.

Long before becoming a state capital, the city was called as the "Wake Crossroads," a name that gives a clear idea regarding the city's geographical function. At that time, Raleigh served as a place where travelers from either north or south could rest and maybe have a drink in one of its taverns. The place was eventually chosen to be North Carolina's capital in 1788. According to some accounts, "Wake Crossroads" was selected since it was within a 10-mile radius of Isaac Hunter's Tavern, a place popular among legislators at that time. But it was in 1792 when Raleigh was formally established as North Carolina's capital.

Sir Walter Raleigh That same year, the North Carolina General Assembly bought a lot from a local businessman and started making plans for Raleigh, which was by the way, modeled after Philadelphia, the US capital state at that time. The city got its name from Sir Walter Raleigh, who sponsored the Colony of Roanoke. The aforementioned assembly held its first meeting in the capital in December 1794. A month after that, the legislative body officially granted Raleigh a charter along with an "Intendant Police" (Mayor) and seven commissioners. John Haywood was Raleigh's first "Intendant Police."

Although Raleigh was lucky to be spared from destruction during the Civil War, the city remained little in size until streetcar lines were introduced in the 1920s. Since then, Raleigh began to grow, eventually transforming into one of the state's commercial hubs. A railroad was also constructed to link the city to neighboring communities. By the end of the Second World War, Raleigh had undergone many significant developments, particularly in its infrastructure. What used to be a rural community evolved into a bustling urban center. The development of the city's infrastructure is largely attributed to the founding of the North Carolina State University School of Design in 1948. But the construction and existence of the Research Triangle Park in the 1959 also brought big changes to the city. With a 7,000 acre land area, the RTP is the world's biggest research park, comprising Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. With its high-tech facilities, the RTP is also among the global leaders in scientific research and development.

As education is essential to any improvement of a city, Raleigh also has many universities and colleges. Aside from the North Carolina State University, other schools in the capital include Shaw University, St. Augustine's College, Meredith College, Wake Tech Community College, and Peace College. Both St. Augustine's and Shaw were founded towards the end of the 1860s, as schools for the freed slaves after the Civil War. Shaw was the premier university founded for that particular purpose in the country. In 1874, the Estey Hall was added to provide higher learning to women of African-American ethnicity.