Catawba County News
When Claremont Was Mayberry
Published: September 18, 2018
The allure of, and nostalgia for, small-town living often conjures the idyllic community of Mayberry from television’s The Andy Griffith Show. Taking inspiration from Griffith’s hometown of Mt. Airy, NC (and from nearby Pilot Mountain), the fictional show has become a model of sorts for how people would like to imagine rural America existed in the 1960s.
To an extent, that close-knit community and friendly naiveté had real-life counterparts in mid-century America. And to historian and professor Dr. Gary Freeze, who authored the three-part book series called The Catawbans, the perception of Mayberry rings true in certain aspects of the past in Claremont, NC. To mark the town’s 125th anniversary, Dr. Freeze will be sharing a light-hearted, informative look at the people and events that have shaped Claremont through its century-plus of history.
If you have ties to Claremont or are intrigued by its parallels to one of yesteryear’s favorite sit-coms, make sure to claim a seat and watch as history comes to life. From the quirky to the funny to the unusual, folks will get a taste of local life in an era that seems distinctly different – and yet familiar – to those who love and appreciate the western foothills of the Old North State.
Dr. Freeze’s presentation is a collaborative effort between the Catawba County Library System, the City of Claremont, and the Catawba County Genealogical Society. Light refreshments will be served, and live music will add to the festive atmosphere. The event takes place Tuesday, September 25 at 6 pm at the First Baptist Church Fellowship Hall (4791 South Depot Street, Claremont).