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Growing up watching
wrestling, our cable system in Kingsport, TN, carried WBTV-3 in
Charlotte for a few years. This was around 1974-1976 and I saw some of
the great promotional spots for the major cards they always had over the
mountain down in Charlotte. During these promos there would always be
information on the screen with the date of the show, the town, the
building, and where you could go to purchase advance tickets. For just
about as long as the Crockett family promoted wrestling in Charlotte,
the primary advance ticket outlet was the National Hat Shop on South
Gary Silverstein is the son
of the man who owned the National Hat Shop, a Charlotte landmark for
just over five decades. We communicated with Gary via email awhile back
and he was nice enough to share some information about the National Hat
Shop and his father's relationship with Jim Crockett, Sr.
"My dad's name was
Isadore Silverstein, but he was always called Izzy. He opened
National Hat Shop in 1932. We had four different locations on South
Tryon Street. Previous to that, he'd owned a cigar shop (Dixie Cigar
Store on E Trade) and was selling tickets to events at the old Armory,
the predecessor to the Park Center and the Grady Cole Center.
He was in charge of
the box office for all Crockett Promotion events. In fact for the Monday
night wrestling events, my dad would bring the money home with him and
make the deposit for the Crocketts. Jim Crockett was a close
friend of my father, as was Grady Cole.
My Grandfather came to Charlotte in around 1896 and opened the Vogue
Men's Clothing store. My dad was born here in 1903. We continued to sell
tickets to almost every event held at both the Coliseum and the Grady
Cole Center (this was prior to Ticketmaster) until I closed the store in
photo of a jam-packed Charlotte Park Center, probably late 1960s
banner advertising the National Hat Shop can be seen
hanging on the balcony railing.
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