5 years ago: William Finger profiled the upcoming American Dance Festival, celebrating its 65th anniversary that year. The festival, which started in Bennington, Vt., in 1934, has been at Duke University since 1978.
10 years ago: In a follow-up to The Independent's investigation into the clout that campaign contributors have getting DOT road projects built, a Front Porch item noted that N.C. Board of Transportation member Kenneth Younger had voted four times to spend $44 million to widen N.C. 150 for nine miles through rural Gaston and Lincoln counties. "Why his persistence?" we wrote. "Younger, chair of Carolina Freight trucking company, wants to connect his trucking company in Cherryville to U.S. 321."
20 years ago: Barry Jacobs wrote, in "A Letter from... The Great Dismal Swamp" in the northeastern corner of North Carolina, that "with the region suffering outmigration and economic distress, and developers commanding tools to tame the land, the Dismal Swamp is in increasing danger of losing forever its distinctive blend of vegetation and moist peat beds."