Raleigh Roasts 2020!

Get your caffeine on: City of Raleigh Museum’s popular ‘Raleigh Roasts’ event returns Saturday, Jan. 18

More than 800 people attended last year’s coffee tasting event – buy your tickets now!
What: The City of Raleigh Museum will host its 3rd annual Raleigh Roasts event in
celebration of Raleigh's café culture on Saturday, Jan. 18. Visitors can purchase
wristbands allowing them to sample freely from onsite local coffee and pastry
businesses while browsing museum exhibits and enjoying live music. Paid admission
includes a complimentary, newly designed 2020 Sir Walter Raleigh coffee mug (while
supplies last).

Confirmed vendors include Counter Culture Coffee, Dilworth Coffee, Slingshot Coffee
Co., Larry’s Coffee, Full Bloom Coffee, Benelux Coffee, Pine State Coffee, Lousy
Hunters Doughnuts, Yellow Dog Bread Co., Carroll’s Kitchen, and TAMA Tea.

Tickets are $5 in advance/$10 at the door – tickets are recommended in advance
at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/raleigh-roasts-2020-tickets-85479388151

Tickets for members of the Friends of the City of Raleigh Museum (the non-profit
organization that supports the City of Raleigh Museum through fundraising and
initiatives) are $3 in advance/$5 at the door.

There will be a separate entrance line for members of the Friends.

The 3rd Annual Raleigh Roasts is sponsored by Campbell University Raleigh campus,
Slingshot Coffee Co., and TransLoc.

A Delicious Country

Explorer John Lawson trekked through the Carolina colony in 1701, recording all he saw. Three centuries later, Raleigh journalist, Scott Huler, followed his trail documenting what had changed and what remained the same. Their journeys are featured in a new exhibit, A Delicious Country, at the COR Museum on display through March 22, 2020.

Thank You For Coming To Rooted In Raleigh!

Thanks to everyone who attended our event this year! We hope you had as much fun as we did.

Through your generous support, and the support of our sponsors, we raised approximately $9,000! This funding will help support new exhibits as well as our educational programs.

We look forward to seeing you again soon at City Of Raleigh Museum!




“Al Norte al Norte: Latino Life in North Carolina.” debuts January 4th, 2019!

A new exhibit is opening on Friday, January 4 titled “Al Norte al Norte: Latino Life in North Carolina.” This traveling exhibition organized by the North Carolina Museum of History features the work of Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist and Triangle resident José Galvez. It chronicles the diversity and strength of the state’s growing Latino community – from business owners and farm laborers to grandparents and kindergarten graduates.

Many Latinos have made North Carolina their home since the 1980’s, in search of better economic opportunity. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates North Carolina’s Hispanic population increased by 22 percent (to 1.26 million) between 2010 and 2017. Shot over 10 years, the exhibit’s black & white photographs (grouped into categories of family, faith, celebration, and work) depict the daily life of Latino North Carolinians adapting to and shaping life across our state. Less political in nature, the exhibit seeks to underscore the cultural similarities that exist for everyone today.

City of Raleigh Museum is one of Marriott Traveler’s Top 5 Things To Do!

We’re excited to be part of such a great list of things to do in Raleigh!

New to the city? Have friends coming to town? Learn more about our museum and the other fun things to do in Raleigh!

The City of Raleigh Museum Opens New Exhibit on History of Dorothea Dix Park on October 21


“From Plantation to Park: The Story of Dix Hill” chronicles legacy of Dix Hill Community
Free exhibit will be run through 2020

Listen to Ernest Dollar talk about this amazing exhibit on iHeart Radio!

What: The City of Raleigh Museum on Sunday, October 21, will unveil a new permanent exhibit about the history of Dorothea Dix Park, titled From Plantation to Park: The Story of Dix Hill. The exhibit, a joint venture with the Dix Park Conservancy, explores the long history and future of Raleigh’s newest park. From Plantation to Park explores four perspectives on the land known as Dix Hill:

  • The story begins with the earliest Native American, African, and European inhabitants and continues with the experience of its mental health patients, starting in 1856 at the then-named North Carolina Insane Asylum. These perspectives are brought to life through patient artwork, video segments, and items used over the hospital’s 150-year history.
  • Also profiled in the exhibit are the nurses and hospital staff, who forged a close-knit community in service to the mentally ill.
  • Unique to the exhibit is the ability for the public to leave their own audio recordings of Dorothea Dix stories, which will become part of its preserved history.
  • Lastly, the public will be able to see the latest redevelopment plans for the 308-acre park as the City of Raleigh envisions the future of Dix Hill as the “next great American city park.”

“We feel the public needs to understand the complicated history of the site to make informed decisions about its future. This is why the exhibit is important for Raleigh,” says City of Raleigh Museum Director Ernest Dollar.

Located less than a mile from downtown Raleigh, the Dorothea Dix Hospital was essentially a city within a city, sourcing its own food and power. Its last patient departed more than five years ago.

This new Dix Park exhibit replaces Our War: Voices of Raleigh’s World War II Veterans, which was installed in honor of D-Day.

Where: City of Raleigh Museum, 220 Fayetteville St., Raleigh, NC 27601

Hours: Tuesday-Saturday 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m.-4 p.m.

Contact: Call 919-996-2220 for more details.

Thank you! Time Warp 2018 is in the Books!

Thank you! Time Warp 2018 is in the Books!

Our 1970s-themed Time Warp this year was a huge success! Thank you to everyone that came out, all our sponsors, and even those that couldn’t make it but managed to bid or look at our amazing silent auction. We sold off some fabulous items including art, vacations, and night-outs, all that money supporting the museum and our upcoming programming.

At the event, we had food from Raleigh restaurants and drinks from Raleigh breweries and distilleries. The dance contest was a blast! Soul train anyone? What a hit!

The costumes were great. Partiers looked totally rad!

Sure it was a fundraiser first but it was also a way to celebrate the good

things our city museum does and is planning in the future. We hope to share more with you in the coming year as we work on a major new exhibit for our City of Raleigh Museum.

We want to thank all our sponsors again and again. They believe in the work being done here at the museum and we want to deliver on that support. If you were part of us this year, again, THANK YOU! If not, see how you can join us.

Thank you for being a part of the 2018 story. Until next year.

The City of Raleigh Museum Debuts Political Cartoonist Dwane Powell Exhibit on June 4

The City of Raleigh Museum Debuts Political Cartoonist Dwane Powell Exhibit on June 4

The City of Raleigh Museum announced today that its retrospective of the nationally syndicated work of political cartoonist and area resident Dwane Powell will open to the public Sunday, June 4. Titled “You really stuck it to me today”: The Political Cartoons of Dwane Powell,” the free exhibit will feature more than 40 cartoons from Powell’s childhood to the present, as well as sketchbooks and artifacts of the cartoonist’s trade. “You really stuck it to me today” will be on display through June 2019.

Powell has inked over 15,000 cartoons during his four decade-long career that have caricatured presidents, politicians, and North Carolina notables. Powell began cartooning for the News & Observer newspaper in 1975, where he remained until his official retirement in 2009. He continues to ink images for the newspaper’s Sunday edition. His provocative drawings about topics such as gun control and HB2 never fail to tickle funny bones or raise hackles, and are always successful in inspiring audiences to engage in current events conversations.

Powell’s work is an encapsulation of social history of the past forty plus years. It reflects his views on complicated issues molded into satirical and comical images that poke fun at both Republicans and Democrats alike. The museum exhibit’s title appropriately stems from a quote made by North Carolina’s iconic senator, Jesse Helms, who after viewing a cartoon, called up Powell and exclaimed, “You really stuck it to me today” – but still asked to display the artwork.

Growing up on a farm in rural Arkansas, Powell studied agri-business at the University of Arkansas-Monticello but loved doodling and was drawn to the cartoons he saw in Collier’s, The Saturday Evening Post and MAD Magazine. It was only by luck that his hometown paper offered him $5 a cartoon, launching his life-long passion. Powell went on to win industry recognition including the Overseas Press Club Award for Excellence in Cartooning and the National Headliners Club Award for Outstanding Editorial Cartoons. He has published three collections of his cartoons.

“Dwane Powell is a legend among American editorial cartoonists with his innate ability to chronicle the life and times of our country in a single frame,” said Ernest Dollar, director of the City of Raleigh Museum. “It is truly an honor for the museum to highlight the amazing work of one of Raleigh’s own.”

Exhibit Details:

“You really stuck it to me today”: The Political Cartoons of Dwane Powell

The City of Raleigh Museum
220 Fayetteville St. Raleigh, NC 27601
(located in the famous downtown Briggs Hardware Building built in 1874)

  • Museum Hours: Tuesdays – Saturdays 9 a.m.- 4 p.m./Sundays 1-4 p.m.
  • Admission is free; donations accepted
  • Group tours available with advance notice
  • More information at cityofraleighmuseum.org or call 919-996-2220

A special exhibit preview will be available to those attending the City of Raleigh Museum’s “Time Warp 2017: The Roaring 20’s” fundraising gala the evening of Saturday, June 3. Benefiting museum exhibitions and educational programs, the annual sold-out event features live music, food, drinks and premium silent and live auction experiences.

Not Jumping for Joy: Raleigh’s Contentious Relationship with Ice Cream Trucks

Not Jumping for Joy: Raleigh’s Contentious Relationship with Ice Cream Trucks

[This material is from the Raleigh Register, a benefit to our museum members. Would you like to see more of this content? Become a member of the museum!]

As a part of the quintessential experience in American suburbia, I grew up ecstatically waiting for the ice cream truck with my brother and cousins during the summer. I can instantly recall the sounds of the hypnotic melody from an ice cream truck as it drove down the narrow street and passed the small church down the road from my house. As I would hear the sound, I would almost instantly run to my dad asking for money for the Tweety bird ice cream.

The iconic symbolism of the ice cream truck and its representation of the childhood summer make it strange to believe that the trucks were at the center of a debate about mobile food stands in Raleigh back in the early 1960s.

A Pine State truck sits in front of their plant at 426 Glenwood Avenue in 1950
A Pine State truck sits in front of their plant at 426 Glenwood Avenue in 1950

Before the modern food truck, the ice cream truck fought for the ability to sell in Raleigh. The main points of contention were child safety and littering. City officials and parents argued that ice cream trucks were a hazard to the community and posed a threat to children. Like food trucks, ice cream trucks divided the community.

Tension between ice cream truck operators and the City of Raleigh began as early as 1962 when the city regulated sales of ice cream and ice cream products. However, on January 22, 1962, a court ruled that city ordinances limiting ice cream truck sales were unconstitutional.

The Raleigh City Council promptly scheduled a public hearing on February 2, 1962, about rescinding the original ordinance, No. 18, concerning the regulation of sales by ice cream trucks.

Proponents of ice cream truck regulation argued passionately, claiming ice cream trucks were an attractive nuisance and created a hazard because they drew children into the streets.

Ice cream truck owners and their supporters argued that instances of accidents involving children were few and that vendors operated ice cream trucks in a way that minimized potential danger.

Ultimately, the council passed a measure agreeing with the opponents of ice cream trucks. The council declared it “unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to sell or offer to sell on the streets or alleys of the city of Raleigh any ice cream products from mobile ice cream units.”

Although the North Carolina Superior Court overturned the ordinance on May 21, 1962, the ice cream truck debate foreshadowed today’s discussions on mobile food stands in the city of Raleigh.

Christopher Phompraseut
City of Raleigh Museum Intern

Latta’s Living Legacy: Rev. Morgan L. Latta and the Latta University



The COR Museum partnered with the Latta Foundation to craft a new exhibit for February entitled, Latta’s Living Legacy: Rev. Morgan L. Latta and the Latta University. The exhibit tells the story of Morgan Latta, a former slave, who gained his freedom and established an industrial school in Raleigh. On display are artifacts from archaeological digs at the school site and architectural elements from Latta’s home which burned in 2007.