Tales from the Trail

Charlotte’s web catches Democratic convention

February 1, 2011

It’s Charlotte for the 2012 Democratic national political convention.

Democrats picked the banking center and Republicans chose Tampa, Florida, for their convention — highlighting the importance of the South to winning the White House next year. ROUTE-RECOVERY/

In the 2008 election, Obama became the first Democrat to win North Carolina — by about 14,000 votes over Republican candidate John McCain –  since President Jimmy Carter in 1976.

First lady Michelle Obama, in a letter to Democrats, described Charlotte as a city “marked by its southern charm, warm hospitality, and an ‘up by the bootstraps’ mentality that has propelled the city forward as one of the fastest-growing in the South. Vibrant, diverse, and full of opportunity, the Queen City is home to innovative, hardworking folks with big hearts and open minds. And of course, great barbecue.”

Queen City is a reference to German Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg who was the wife of  British King George III.

It is also nicknamed “The Hornet’s Nest” from the American Revolutionary War when British General Cornwallis, after being driven out by residents, complained that Charlotte was “a veritable hornet’s nest of rebellion.”

President George Washington was apparently not very impressed with his visit to the town, remembering it as a “very trifling place.”

Other stray facts…

–Charlotte was once a hotbed of professional wrestling in the 1970s and 1980s.

–Charlotte is home to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.

–Charlotte is in NORTH Carolina and should not be confused with Charleston in SOUTH Carolina (and neither should be confused with Charlottesville in Virginia).

Photo credit: Reuters/Carlos Barria (Charlotte skyline)

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