Wednesday, August 20, 2014

317 E. Morehead Street

American Dry Cleaners vacated their East Morehead Street location in 1984 to make way for I-277. 

    They are still in business, though, on N. Graham Street. Look for the gigantic American flag!

'Making Room For The Road: American Dry Cleaners and Laundry is one of many businesses displaced by construction of I-277.' March, 1983. Fred Wilson/Staff

'Sign in front of American Dry Cleaners.'
January, 1984. Milton Hinnant/Staff

'Lisa Smith waits on last customer, Robert Berton.'
January, 1984. Davie Hinshaw/Staff

'Bill Linney disassembles equipment at American Dry Cleaners. 
This equipment was sold to B-Kleen Cleaners.'
January, 1984. 

'American Dry Cleaners at 317 E. Morehead Street.'
Fred Wilson/Staff

'David Allen (right) and his employees of American Dry Cleaners.'
December, 1983. Don Hunter/Staff

'Blue Bricks Falling: Demolition of the American Dry Cleaners building on E. Morehead St. began Wednesday, clearing one of the last obstacles to construction of the I-277 downtown loop. Anyone with a soft spot for the building can buy one of its blue bricks next week at Machine Gun Kelly's, a nightclub across the street at 300 E. Morehead St. Patrons can buy club admission and a brick for $1, which will assist victims of the March 28 tornadoes.'
April 12, 1984. Fred Wilson/Staff


Anonymous said...

Hard to imagine a dry cleaners having 18 employees these days.

Cullen Ferguson said...

Ah yes, I remember it well! Back in the 1970's I got my shirts dry cleaned and suits dry-cleaned there, and I continued to patronize American Dry Cleaners after they moved to N. Graham St. near the Channel 9 studios where I worked. It was always a bedrock American business and David Allen's Christian faith and deep patriotism were always refleced in his ads in the Charlotte News and the Observer. He had many employees, including some very friendly African-American women who were always busy sewing on buttons and making other clothing repairs. If I needed a button sewed on, they would gladly stop what they were doing to help me. The walls behind the front desk were lined with lots of signs relecting bedrock American values of honesty and hard work,and a very large American flag always flew high above his store.

Anonymous said...

Those red white and blue neon lights never went off 24/7/365 at that place.

Maria David said...

Cullen - nice comment!

Anonymous said...

Maria Davis has just scratched the surface.

So where is the article on the old Coffee Cup on Morehead?

What about the original South Park Mall that opened Feb 11, 1970? Forget the ugly one now.
The original was a masterpiece of beauty and class that should have never been touched or added too.

How about the old Charlotte Coliseum out 2 lane Independence that opened around 1957 as the largest dome in the world? Billy Graham televised a world crusade in 1958 and Ringling opened the same year with the Globetrotters.

What about the Tyvola Rd Charlotte Coliseum 8th wonder of the world brutally demolished way before its time that made the smaller ugly downtown armory TWA look like a piece of crap that cost 10 times more? The great Larry Bird should have been picked as new owner but was rejected over Bob Johnson. Can you believe that?

What about the long major controversial history of I-485 belt to be complete finally after 40 yrs in Dec 2014 and how the south side fought it tooth and nail in the 70s and 80s?

What about old Clark Griffith stadium that burned and the original Hornets 1A baseball team off Marsh built when Dilworh was a burb 100 yrs ago?

What about the old Charlotte Checkers all Canadian hockey team who played in the old dome who all hung out at Lanny's Swayback Mare on weekends getting loaded after the match? Most stayed after bing sold it the late 70s and fond jobs and married local girls and raised families.

What about the World Famous Cellar on Morehead since the mid 60s who had every famous R&B Soul or Rock group for many yrs from Jr Walkers All Stars, OJays, Friends Of Distinction, to Spirit, Humble Pie to Skynyrd ?

What about the old Park Center that had all big names like Otis Redding, Joe Tex, Sam and Dave to Marshal Tucker, Allman Bros, Frampton to Pink Floyd including Jim and Tammy Bakker original start for a few weeks?

The long PTL history here would be another good one.

What about Big Bill Ward and Mid Atlantic Wrestling every Sat in the 60s at WBTV studio or Park Center or old Coliseum with names like Flair, Valentine, Rip Hawk, Swede Hanson, George Becker, Masked Bolos, etc sold to Ted Turner in the 80s in Atlanta as WCW and WWF bought by McMahon in the 90s? Many wrestlers were bouncers at big strip clubs on Wilkinson like the Paper Doll.

What about the major construction of I-77 that cut the city in half for at least 7 yrs?

Forget the closing of all of downtown Tryon St for the failed mall remodel crap for a year in 1979. What a sham. Big mess.

What about Shuffletown drag strip off 16 where every Sunday guys race their own cars in the 60s or early 70s to the sound of Beach Boys hot rod songs drawing the biggest names the world over when no one whined about noise?

What about old Morris Field airport that progressed from the 1940s '50s '60s and '70s off Little Rock Rd and the demolished red brick airport with Piedmont Airlines compared to the modern day international Jetport?

What about Shoneys as the #1 teen hang out on Freedom and Independence or the South 21 DIs all over from S Blvd to N Tryon to Indep?

What about the many Drive Ins in such as the Viking I & 2 on Freedom, Queens on South Blvd, South 29 out Wilkinson, The xxx Fox off Old Statesville or Thunderbird on North Tryon? Teen date heaven in the 60s and 70s.

The list goes on ... lot of work to do ... thanks for the work so far ...

Ron and Susie

Anonymous said...

Ms David has done a super genuinely honest job on her retro historical adventure of looking back at the past. Keep up the good work.