North Carolina Stadium Built Atop Demolished Black Town

Source: Omar Vega / Getty

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The first private hospital in North Carolina to serve Black patients, Good Samaritan Hospital, located directly where Bank of America Stadium stands, was a remnant of segregated healthcare. This historic hospital, built in 1891, was one of the first of its kind in the United States.

Men and women emancipated from slavery built Charlotte’s Brooklyn neighborhood in the late 1800s. It was built, like many other Black communities in the state, to settle on low-lying ground where flooding, sewage, and sanitation difficulties made it unsafe.

According to WRAL, at the height of Brooklyn’s prominence, the town also boasted Charlotte’s first Black public school, Charlotte’s only Black high school, the city’s first free library for Black patrons, the first companies to offer white-collar jobs to Black workers, and the first private hospital for Black citizens in the city.

Dan Aldridge, Davidson College professor of history and Africana studies, called the hospital a symbol of Black achievement.

“The hospital is the most notable thing on the site of the Bank of America Stadium,” said Aldridge. “So at the one hand, it’s a symbol of Black achievement and pride. We have a hospital! But it’s also emblematic of racial health disparities. It’s a symbol of both shame and pride.”

WRAL in Raleigh’s documentary ‘Ghosts in the Stadium’ is a historical documentary that looks into the unknown past of four major football stadiums in the Carolinas and its connections to the country’s terrible history of race relations. Cristin Severance, WRAL Investigative Documentary Producer, and Chris Lea, WRAL Sports Anchor, discover who these stadiums were named after, where they were built, and what communities they displaced.

In the film, Aldridge, and Krista Terrell, a member of the Charlotte- Mecklenburg Remembrance Project claim that one of the “most horrific racial incidents in Charlotte’s history” took place on the hospital grounds.

It details the 1913 lynching of 22-year-old Joe McNeely in the black neighborhood, which is now the site of Bank of America Stadium. McNeely was dragged into the street in front of the hospital and shot to death by a mob of masked men.

“I don’t think you can tear down the stadium because of it but you should acknowledge what happened on the site and the presence of Good Samaritan Hospital and this whole black community,” Professor Aldrige expressed.


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North Carolina Stadium Built Atop Demolished Black Town  was originally published on