From the President – July, 2017

By Elaine Henson

Our final local World War I soldier featured in our WWI exhibit is Arthur Bluethenthal.  He was born in Wilmington in 1891 to parents, Leopold and Johanna Bluethenthal, who had emigrated from Germany after the Civil War. Leopold worked in his uncle’s dry goods business which he eventually took over in later years.

The family lived on Dock Street and later at 17th and Market Streets which remains across from the Kenan mansion, home of UNCW’s Chancellor. They also had a home at Wrightsville Beach built c.1897. The home, which was the oldest surviving on Wrightsville Beach, sold in 2015 for over $3.45 million, only to be torn down so the two lots it sat on could be relisted.

Nicknamed “Bluey”, Arthur was educated in local schools, then attended Phillip’s Exeter Academy and graduated from Princeton University in 1913, where he was a star on their football team.  After college he did some football coaching at Princeton and UNC- Chapel Hill.  He also worked in his family’s business.

Arthur joined the war effort in France in May of 1916, the year before the US entered the war. He was a volunteer ambulance driver before joining the French Foreign Legion as an aviator in May of 1917.  He was shot down in combat on June 5, 1918 and was buried in France.  Later his body was exhumed and shipped home.  He was re-interred in the Jewish section of Oakdale Cemetery.  On Memorial Day of 1928, the Wilmington Airport was renamed Bluethenthal Field in his honor and remained that until the 1950s when the name was changed to New Hanover County Airport.

The North Carolina State Archives has a collection of letters that Arthur Bluethenthal wrote from France during WWI.  You can access the State Archives here and search for them and other North Carolinians’ letters from the “Great War”.

This is an excerpt from one of Arthur’s letters that we have on display at our exhibit:

Our own Cape Fear Museum has a collection from the Bluethenthal family. See it at: www.capefearmuseum.com  Photo courtesy of Cape Fear Museum.

 

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! Tuesday Evenings

Family Night on the Boardwalk

Our Society will be participating in “Family Night on the Boardwalk” this summer. We will have a table with our brochures and information on the history of Carolina Beach and the Boardwalk behind the stage on Cape Fear Blvd.  

We need volunteers to sit at the table and talk to people from 6:30 to 8:30 Tuesday evenings beginning July 18 and running through August.

Please call  the History Center at 910-458-0502 to let us know which Tuesday you can work.

Fort Fisher for Kids

2017 Summer Kids Activities
10 am to 2 pm

Saturday, July 14: The Anti-Aircraft Artillery Gunner.  From 1941 to 1944, Fort Fisher was home to a US Army Anti-Aircraft training base. Soldiers from around the country were here to learn to shoot down enemy aircraft from the sky. Find out about this period in Fort Fisher’s history and find out if you have what it takes to be an AA gunner.

Saturday, July 21: Archaeology at Fort Fisher. Explore the history of Fort Fisher with Maritime archaeologist from the North Carolina Underwater Archaeology Lab. Find out about the amazing historical finds in the Cape Fear Region. Educational and hands-on activities will focus on the role of Archaeologists in understanding Fort Fisher’s history and how they accomplished their important work.

Saturday, July 28: Civil War Communications. How did Civil War units send messages over large distances without texting or cell phones? How could units be sure these messages would not fall into enemy hands? Come to Fort Fisher to learn the “Wig Wag” flag system to send messages and encrypt your own messages using cipher disks that you can take home!

Saturday, August 4: Protecting the Blockade. Join the Fort Fisher Signal Corps and learn how blockade runners supplied the Confederacy with much needed supplies under the protection of the Fort’s guns. Be your own blockade runner and see if you can safely transport goods to and from the Port of Wilmington. What will you decide is worthy of such risky transportation?

Saturday, August 11: The Whole Garrison has Gone to Gardening! The garrison at Fort Fisher had a big issue with fresh food to eat. To supplement their diet, the soldiers were ordered to create company gardens. Learn about how the soldiers at Fort Fisher fed themselves and fought off disease and take home their own potted plant!

 

Builder’s Glass and Hardware

Featured Business Member
July, 2017

 

 

Thanks to our new business member for donating to our World War I exhibit.  If you are building or remodeling be sure to check them out.

Builder’s Glass & Hardware offers the best and widest selection frameless, semi-frameless, heavy glass shower door enclosures, mirrors, shelving, bath accessories and locksets. They have specialists who provide unparalleled end-to-end service – from design to fabrication to installation.

Their customers know that they use the best materials available and they will enjoy their products and services for years to come. If you would like to see their products for yourself, we encourage you to view their galleries below or go by their showroom. The team at Builders Glass & Hardware look forward to providing you with the products you deserve and have always wanted.

Providing Luxurious Frameless Glass Shower Doors in Wilmington, NC & Beyond. If you’re looking to achieve a seamless look in your bathroom’s design, a frameless glass enclosure from Builder’s Glass & Hardware is a great way to add elegance and class. Whether your shower is tucked away next to a bathtub or stands alone in a luxurious master bath, it’s no problem for their experienced shower glass designers and installers.

Custom Frameless Shower Doors from Builder’s Glass & Hardware. Builder’s Glass & Hardware is proud to offer high-end frameless shower glass, and you can be sure that all of their materials are top-of-the-line and will look their best for several years. Serving homeowners and builders across the Wilmington area, their designers can easily create a custom frameless shower door to fit any space or style. They often work with custom requests providing a perfect match for your current bathroom or an updated style for a renovation or remodeling.

Builder’s Glass & Hardware
221-6 Old Dairy Rd., Wilmington, NC
910-686-6236

Society Notes – July, 2017

By Darlene Bright, History Center Director

  • The History Center recorded 68 visitors in June. We had 25 in attendance at the June Potluck.
  •  The History Center was used for a meeting held by the Got-Em-On Live Bait Fishing Club.
  • Welcome to new business members Benson and Terry Hall of Richmond, Virginia. Also, Byron and Ramona Hovey of Carolina Beach.

Chefs of the Coast: Restaurants and Recipes from the North Carolina Coast

By Nancy Gadzuk

John Batchelor, food critic and author of Chefs of the Coast, Restaurants and Recipes from the North Carolina Coast was the featured speaker at the May 2017 History Center meeting.

He spoke on his experiences as a restaurant reviewer for newspapers in both Winston-Salem and Greensboro and as a judge of restaurant cooking competitions throughout Western North Carolina.

These experiences led him to write first , Chefs of the Mountains with recipes and stories from some of the restaurants he’d visited there.

To some people (like me), John’s would be a dream job: sampling delicious food, hearing the chefs’ and restaurateurs’ stories of how they got into the business, learning at least some of their secrets and recipes, finding out where their ingredients come from, and compiling these experiences into a beautifully photographed collection to be shared with others.

Apparently John thought so too, and he began work on Chefs of the Coast. One of the things he learned in his first book was that refining recipes that are meant to serve fifty down to recipes that serve four is not so easy.

Based on feedback he’d gotten on his earlier book, he also knew readers wanted simpler recipes and that some relatively inexpensive restaurants needed to be included. Seventeen Wilmington and Southport restaurants are represented in the book, which leans heavily toward the Outer Banks.

He said the key to pulling everything together came from his interviews, where a line or two would stand out and inform the focus of the entire segment. For example, “If it’s white – rice, flour, sugar – don’t eat it,” is John’s own food mantra.

He acknowledged that many home cooks can prepare a meal that’s every bit as tasty as what a top chef prepares, but for two or four people rather than a restaurant full of people all wanting different meals.

John’s line that stood out for me was this: The traditional chef’s hat has one hundred folds in it, signifying that a good chef should be able to cook an egg one hundred different ways, from memory.

Bon appetit!

 

 

June Meeting – Covered Dish Dinner 6:30pm

Monday, June 19, 2017

6:30 PM (one hour early)

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, June 19, 6:30 p.m. at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.  Please Note: We will begin at 6:30 (one hour earlier than usual).

In lieu of our usual program, we will enjoy our annual covered dish dinner. Please bring a favorite dish to share with the group.

If the weather behaves you might also want to bring a lawn chair.  This is always a wonderful time to visit with old friends, but also a great time to introduce new people. PLEASE bring a friend or neighbor who might be interested in joining.

 

World War I Exhibit

This summer the Federal Point History Center, located next to Town Hall at 1121-A North Lake Park Boulevard, will host an exhibit, World War I “Locals Who Served”, featuring three men with ties to the Lower Cape Fear area who served in the “War to End All Wars.”

The opening reception for the exhibit was on Sunday, June 11, 2017, 2-4 pm at the History Center.