Winston-Salem - In 1913, the cities of Salem and Winston decided to join forces and become one city, beginning a prosperous relationship that will celebrate it's centennial next May.
J.R. Snider, popular radio host at WSJS in Winston-Salem, spoke with News 2 about the history of the two cities, and what brought them together.
Snider said in the beginning, not everybody was for the merging, saying, "There was a newspaper headline that said merging the two towns would have been like marrying the preachers daughter to the town rascal."
This was because Salem was run by the church, and Winston was more industrialist, Snider telling News 2, "Winston, it was pretty wild, there were no bars or anything in Salem, but all you had to do was walk up the street to go to Winston if you wanted to drink you know."
Immediately after the merge, Winston was already so much larger than Salem, Snider said, that "immediately Salem became a part of Winston."
Over 100 years together, the city has gone through its share of boom and busts, but through it all, said Snider, the city learned to grown, saying, "It hasn't been that many years ago that you could stand on 4th street at 5:30 and bowl and not hit anybody."
Snider went on to say, "We have had some really forward looking people who have said we are not going to let this town die."
The Winston-Salem Centennial Commission is soliciting ideas for the centennial celebration. Among the ideas being considered is a New Year's Day celebration to kick off the centennial year, and other events to be held around the city during the weekend of May 9-12, 2013.
Residents are encouraged to submit their suggestions no later than Friday, March 16, by going online to the city's website or calling 734-1400.