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Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    General William Davie Bench, UNC (Chapel Hill)

  • Type


  • Subjects

    Historic Political Figures

  • City

    Chapel Hill

  • County


  • Description

    A marble bench sits at the base of "Davie Poplar", a large tulip poplar tree in McCorkle Place on the campus of the University of North Carolina. The bench has become worn and weathered during the century since its installation. The tree is believed to be more than 300 years old.

    Image: Rear inscription

  • Inscription


    Rear: GENERAL DAVIE CHAPTER / N.S.D.A.R. / DURHAM, N. C. / NOV. 3, 1914

  • Custodian

    The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

  • Dedication Date

    February, 1915

  • Decade


  • Geographic Coordinates

    35.913400 , -79.051790 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      Angley, Wilson. "William Richardson Davie,", (accessed May 12, 2023) Link

      Carr, James O. "Presentation of Portrait of William Richardson Davie to the State of North Carolina: In the Senate Chamber at Raleigh, November 15, 1910 by the North Carolina Society of the Sons of the Revolution," (accessed May 25, 2012) Link

      Clark, Walter. An Address Upon the Life and Services of Gen. William R. Davie, "A Great Man in An Age of Great Men." Delivered at the Celebration on the Battlefield of Guilford Court House 4th July 1892, (Greensboro, NC: Guilford Battle-Ground Company, [1892]), (accessed November 12, 2012) Link

      Denniston, Eliza Olver (ed.). Daughters of the American Revolution Magazine, 46: 2, (1915), (accessed May 18, 2012) Link

  • Public Site


  • Materials & Techniques


  • Sponsors

    General Davie Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution

  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    Mrs. Wiley, chapter regent, and Mrs. Reynolds, State regent, both made remarks at the presentation of the bench to the University. They discussed the rich history of Chapel Hill and their appreciation for the University. Dr. Edward Kidder Graham, University President, accepted the gift on behalf of the University. The University Glee Club sang for the attendees.

  • Nickname

    Davie Poplar Bench

  • Subject Notes

    William Richardson Davie, an attorney and officer in the Revolutionary War, served as Governor of North Carolina from 1798 to 1799. He was heavily involved in the founding of the University of North Carolina while he was a member of the North Carolina general assembly.

    [Additional information from NCpedia editors at the State Library of North Carolina: This person enslaved and owned other people. Many Black and African people, their descendants, and some others were enslaved in the United States until the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in 1865. It was common for wealthy landowners, entrepreneurs, politicians, institutions, and others to enslave people and use enslaved labor during this period. To read more about the enslavement and transportation of African people to North Carolina, visit To read more about slavery and its history in North Carolina, visit - Government and Heritage Library, 2023.]

  • Location

    The bench stands in front of the giant Davie Poplar in McCorkle place on the University of North Carolina Campus in Chapel Hill, NC.

  • Landscape

    The bench is surrounded by shady trees, bushes and perennials.

  • Post Dedication Use

    According to legend, if a couple kisses on this bench, they will marry. This has led to its becoming a popular place for wedding proposals.

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