Community Arts & Culture

Hargraves Community Panel

What is this mural about? 

Since 1959, many additions and improvements to the facility have been made. The Hargraves Community Center is comprised of a main building which houses the administrative offices, meeting rooms and Holmes Day Care Center. The daycare center has assisted many working community families through affordable childcare. The bottom center portion of the canvas captures key educator, Ms. Sally Pendergraft and her staff during a class picture. Girls from Ebony Dance class, instructed by Sister Rashii Purefoy, gracefully move along the top of two girls peeking their head from playground equipment at the Center. The right portion of the panel illustrates other aspects of community involvement in the Center. From religious to recreational, Hargraves Community Center is truly a gathering place for all.

A History of the Hargraves Center

“Birthed from the collective labour of Chapel Hill’s hardworking black community, the center has grown from one, lone-standing brick building which served as a recreational outlet for Chapel Hill’s black youth, to a place where all community members can enjoy tennis, baseball, workshops, dance classes, and affordable, quality childcare.”—David Wilson, Artist

The Hargraves Community Center was constructed in 1941. The murals, a more recent addition, were completed in 2004 by Durham artist, David Wilson.

The Hargraves Center murals showcase a history of the Center’s community and political leaders, its central role in the Northside neighborhood, and its significance as the first social and recreational facility for African-Americans in Chapel Hill. They depict essential figures to Chapel Hill’s rich history; like Ms. Rebecca Clark, Mildred “Mama Dip” Council, Glenda Hargraves, Fred Battle and Nate Davis. Also included are community rock masons Willis and Alfred Barbee; Ms. Lucille Caldwell, the Center’s first paid director and the first black professional recreation administrator in NC; William Hargraves, former Parks and Recreation Commission member who spearheaded many of the wonderful programs available to the community today; Mr. Adolphus Clark and Ms. Cornelia Spencer Love, who made financial and organizational contributions to beautiful pool; and Ms. Sally Pendergraft, who dedicated herself to caring for the youth of the community through Holmes Day Care.

Want to see more of the murals? Check out the ones mounted at the Hargraves Community Center, the adjoining AD Clark Pool, or the Northside gymnasium!

A picture of this mural halfway through completion:


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