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When Carolina first opened, the University’s well served as the primary source of drinking and bathing water for the students, faculty and staff.
Since then, it has gone through a few redesigns, including the addition of a structure based on the Temple of Love at Versailles in 1897. The current well — what we now call the Old Well — was constructed in 1954 using wooden columns, a marble base and copper roof.
Over the last six decades, the Old Well has become an icon for Carolina.
The tradition of a live animal mascot began in 1924 when head cheerleader Vic Huggins was inspired by footballer Jack “The Battering Ram” Merritt to acquire a live ram. Huggins’ idea formed a royal family that has lived on for the past century.
Most recently, Otis, a Horned Dorset ram from northern Virginia, has taken the throne as Rameses XXII.
The Davie Poplar tree has been keeping watch over Carolina students in Chapel Hill ever since the University opened its doors more than two centuries ago. The large tulip poplar tree located in McCorkle Place predates the University and is named after Carolina’s founder, William Richardson Davie.
Legend has it that if the Davie Poplar falls, the University falls with it. Though the origin of the myth remains unknown, Carolina isn’t taking any chances. Davie Poplar Jr. was planted in 1918 to serve as the original tree’s heir.
With historic buildings and picturesque landscaping, Carolina's campus is iconic, and some of the University's most beautiful spots are worth a closer look.
Have you ever heard of the Tin Can or the Scuttlebutt? Those words may bring back fond memories for some generations of Tar Heels, but for today's students, they're a mystery. Though much of the Carolina experience remains the same, take a look at how campus has changed through the years.
From classrooms to makerspaces, take a new and unique look at the University through the alphanumerics that bring meaning to campus locations.
Created on June 3, 1795, the DiPhi debate and literary society is the University's oldest student organization. Carolina's colors can actually be traced to the light blue from the Dialectic Society and the white from the Philanthropic Society.
As the oldest General Alumni Association student group, the Order of the Bell Tower serves as the official student ambassadors and tradition keepers to the University. Through our events and services, the group connects past, present and future Tar Heels.
Since its founding, the University has been dedicated to serving the state of North Carolina. Tar Heels today continue that legacy by working with nonprofits and community organizations throughout the year to address critical issues and challenges facing North Carolinians.