Historic Feature — Wilmington after the Occupation by Union Troops

[TAKEN FROM: The War of the Rebellion: a Compilation of the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Armies consists of 138,579 pages with 1,006 maps and diagrams assembled in 128 books, organized as 70 volumes grouped in four series, published between 1881 and 1901.]

District of Wilmington: March, 1865; Major-General Schofield directed the District of Wilmington to comprise all the territory under military control of the army operating from Cape Fear River as a base. Brig. Gen. J. E. Hawley, U. S.

Volunteers were assigned to the command and made responsible for the protection of the depot at Wilmington, Cape Fear Harbor, and the line of railroad in rear of the army and, also, appointed provost-marshal-general for the district. The Second Brigade, First Division, Twenty-fourth Corps was ordered to report to Brigadier-General Hawley for duty in the district. On the 1st of the month Major-General Schofield, with a portion of the Twenty-third Corps, and Major-General Terry, with the Provisional Corps, were in the district, but soon moved northward to combine with General Sherman at Goldsborough.

About 8,600 Union prisoners were released on parole, at Northeast Bridge, ten miles above Wilmington and cared for at Wilmington and, thence, transported north; several thousand of them were put into the hospital. This delivery was wholly unexpected, and the district was almost without proper material to care for them properly. They were in a frightful condition in all respects, and a camp or jail fever broke out among them. Besides, they were all sick of the commands of Major-Generals Schofield and Terry, and when Major General Sherman’s columns reached Fayetteville, he sent down 1,000 or 7,000 miserably destitute refugees, white and black, and 1,000 or 2,000 sick and wounded soldiers.

All the supplies that the rebels had left were seized; citizens and citizen physicians were set at work; a heavy force of contrabands were set at work cleaning the city (perhaps the dirtiest ever seen); requisitions were made for supplies, and the surgeons, Doctors Barnes and Buzzell, who died of fever contracted in the hospitals, and Doctor Jarvis, successively in charge, labored faithfully. A portion of the white refugees was sent to New York, as directed by General Sherman. A few blacks were sent to South Carolina, perhaps 500. A large colony of blacks was established at Fort Anderson and the usual efforts were made to get them food, clothing and work.

Brevet Brigadier-General Abbott (with four regiments) was assigned to the command of Wilmington; the battalion of the Sixteenth New York Heavy Artillery was sent down the river; Major Prince to command at Fort Fisher; Captain Beach at Fort Caswell, and Captain Sheppard at Smithville. A company of engineers, under Captain McClure, assisted by a force of contrabands, was set at work on the railroad bridge over Smith’s Creek (Wilmington and Weldon Railroad), 280 feet long, and it was rebuilt substantially before the regular construction train could get around from Goldsborough to finish the Northeast Bridge.

Captured cotton and tobacco were collected and turned over to the treasury agent and afterward to the quartermaster. During the month about 7,000 men in detachments and provisional organizations reported here and were sent forward to Goldsborough and the front. A large amount of stores accumulated here, and the commands of Generals Terry and Kilpatrick were chiefly supplied, hence, before they started for Raleigh.

No important events occurred during the month. The organization of a company of police guard in each county was completed. A great many refugees (white and black) and paroled and released rebels were sent off toward their homes, public property gathered in, soldiers mustered out from their hospitals. The duties incident to such a district kept the forces busy. Major-General Sherman and Chief Justice Chase visited the district during the month.


Recipe – By Popular Request

From Chris Say

(this was served at the May meeting and everybody loved it)

Adapted from Chris’s Grandmother’s recipe

Jam Cake:

½ cup buttermilk

2 tsp. soda

2 sticks unsalted butter (1 C)

2 cups sugar

6 large eggs

2 cups good quality jam or preserves

4 cups all-purpose flour, sifted

1 tsp. allspice

2 tsp. cinnamon

2 tsp. nutmeg

Combine buttermilk and soda.  Set aside. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, beating well after adding them. Add jam or preserves, flour, and spices. Add buttermilk and soda mixture to the batter. Blend well. Bake at 350 degrees 1-1/2 hours in greased bundt pan or tube pan. Or, bake in greased layer pans or cupcake pans until done (about 25-30 mins) It will make 3 dozen cupcakes.

Caramel Frosting and Chocolate-Caramel filling (adapted from BBC Good Food, August 2012)

225 grams (1cup/2 sticks) unsalted butter softened

450 grams light brown sugar (2 ¼ cups) firmly packed

175 ml. heavy cream (3/4 cup)

300 grams icing 10X confectioners sugar (2 ¾ cups approx.) sifted when added to mixture

¼ tsp. sea salt or to taste

1 tsp. pure vanilla

100 grams chocolate (dark or semisweet according to preference)  3/4 cup in broken pieces or chips with ¼ cup reserved to make chocolate shavings as decoration

Put 1½ sticks of butter, the light brown sugar, and  the heavy cream in a mediun pan. Heat gently until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat and simmer the mixture for 5 minutes. Remove from heat . Add vanilla. Pour into a heatproof  bowl. With an eletric mixer gradually beat in the 10X sugar as you sift it into the mixture. (This will prevent lumps) Beat the mixture until fluffy. Add the rest of the butter – ½ stick and sea salt to taste. If the frosting is too firm to spread, add a bit more heavy cream. If it is too thick to spread, add a bit more 10X sugar. Put aside ¼ of the mixture to make the chocolate-caramel filling. Frost the cake with the  remaining ¾ of the mixture.

Chocolate Caramel Filling

Melt the chocolate and mix it into slightly less than ¼ of the caramel mixture.


Use the chocolate-caramel filling between the layers or slice the cake horizontally and fill with the chocolate-caramel filling. Frost the top and sides (if desired) with the caramel frosting.

Society Notes – June, 2019

Fort Fisher to hold Confederate Navy and Marine Corp Program

KURE BEACH—With a unique nod to Father’s Day weekend, history will come alive June 15-16, 2019, when Fort Fisher State Historic Site hosts a Confederate Navy and Marine Corp living history program 10 am – 4 pm Saturday and 12 noon – 4 pm Sunday.

The event will feature costumed interpreters, small arms demonstrations, special tours, and periodic firings of the site’s 12-pound bronze Napoleon cannon.

As a special bonus, the program will also include the ‘Toy Soldier Workshop,’ a Junior Reserves family activity, in which kids and parents get to paint toy soldiers while learning about military uniforms, colors, and equipment. Participating artists even get to take their work home.

All Fort Fisher programming is made possible through the generous support of the Friends of Fort Fisher and its sustaining members, the Town of Carolina Beach, and the Town of Kure Beach.

Boardwalk - CBWe’re doing it again this Summer!

Guided Tour Historic Carolina Beach Boardwalk

10 am every Tuesday!

June 18, 2019 – September 3, 2019

 50 minutes walking tour

532 Postcard - Boardwalk


Meet on the Boardwalk at the southeast corner of the new Hampton Inn, near the Visitor’s Bureau Kiosk.

Park at: the Municipal Parking lot across from the Town Marina, as close as you can get to the Hampton Inn. Donation requested: $10.00 per person.

Society Notes

             By Darlene Bright, History Center Director 

  • The History Center recorded 56 visitors in March. There were 50 people in attendance at the May meeting. The History Center was used by the Got-Em-On Live Bait Club and the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC).
  • Welcome to new members Dale and Sue Walters of Carolina Beach.
  • Thanks to Elaine Henson and Chris Say (see recipe on previous page) for the May refreshments.
  • Thanks to Linda Kuharcik for beginning the painting of the sign and door.
  • Thanks to John Gregory for taking pictures of the re-plaquing of the Kure Cottage.
  • WE STILL NEED PEOPLE TO LEAD (and help lead) THE BOARDWALK TOURS. Call Cheri if you can take a Tuesday.

Kure Beach Mayor’s Message at Dedication Ceremony of Fire Hall Heglar Station

–  Kure Beach’s New Town Hall and Fire Station

May 14, 2019 11:30 am

Welcome friends and neighbors to this special event, I am Craig Bloszinsky, the Mayor of this group of service minded commissioners which you elected and entrusted to guide the workings of this community. We welcome our guests from our neighbors, our county, our state, and our country who are here to celebrate with us. We are all proud and happy with this new facility. Today is a day of celebration and hope.

I thank Pastor Keck for asking God’s blessing on all those who had a hand in bringing this to reality. Who are these people, it is you, this is your building, you paid for it and it stands as your representative past and future devoted to your service. I also want to let the staff know, Nancy, Mike, John, Jimmy, Arlen, Nikki, Ed and their staff, that their service in moving to trailers, suffering the crunch of space, the extent of Hurricane Florence and its damage, moving back into a new structure and keeping all services as if things were normal was outstanding leadership on their part. Give them a hand, I ask that you remember that in your dealings with them as they work hard to support you.

As a community, Kure Beach, we are blessed with the incredible beauty of the ocean and the river, the insight of the fathers of our town in the layout and the vision of what it could be. We celebrate these new buildings today with the presence of the founding family, Punkie Kure, and the legacy of this pioneering and insightful family. There are two plaques representing the founding family that were part of the old structure, one will be added with the new dedication plaque in front of the town hall entrance and the other to a stand in front of the fire station, both original, historic and appropriate as testaments to the work and memory of these men.

Now lets dedicate these structures, you have just heard from Commissioner Allen Oliver how this complex was completed on time ( except for hurricane Florence’s impact ) and under budget. Remarkable in itself but you may ask “why now”? Our old building served us when the town had 1500 residents, we are now 1000 residents stronger, it is testament to the future of the Kure Beach that will be built in the 220 open lots and the future cottage rebuilds. It’s important as a place to work, to build morale for town and for staff, to represent you and this beautiful home of ours. It is a time of financial strength as this and other councils have built a strong financial base and reserve to ensure you the safety, services and cleanliness we all want.

Today we dedicate this complex of buildings to those who made this town their home and care for this community and its past and future. Notice that we did not add council names, this is not about Mayors or Commissioners this is yours and ours to the extent that we are citizens together to ensure that the character of our town is preserved.

Naming the Fire Hall

Now that the complex is dedicated as shown on this plaque, lets talk about naming the Fire Station.

Citizens of Kure Beach, we are not intending to name every building, however this moment in our history offers a unique opportunity to recognize selfless service across generations for an impressive period of time.

Your naming committee has followed the process under Article 4 Facilities, Section 4.03 Naming Public Facilities adopted 06/16/2009 to consider naming the new Fire Hall structure in the Town Complex.

There have been many volunteers for our Fire Dept. over the years, individuals like Wayne Bostic who served as chief and dedicated 47 years to this town. I would say that beyond Wayne and other respected individuals none have contributed at the levels of three generations of the Heglar Family.

Fire Dept. Service : Harold – 45 years, 42 as Chief, official leader of the Fire Dept. growth till last year. Jerry – 45 years volunteer service as fire fighter, one year as Chief. David – 22 years volunteer service as fire fighter, 13 years voluntary service as Emergency Manager. These three men provided 125 years of service to the Fire Dept. More than a century of volunteer work over 3500 emergency calls and only 13 years of salary to Harold as the Fire Chief. 112 years flat out free to this town, to you citizens.

These courageous men walked into buildings on fire, took small boats into the fog to rescue errant boaters and into the surf in all seasons to rescue distressed individuals in the water. They accepted the mental burden of managing hurricane recoveries, leaving home, family and any activities at any time of day or night when others needed help. I have no idea how to measure that.

This tally is not near complete as it does not cover the service on Town Council for David or his Grandfather Dub. It does not include Dub’s tenure as Police Chief for the 5 times he stood in to serve when the town had no officer, or his 25 years of service as the Director of Public Works. It does not include the service of Michael as lifeguard or in Public Works. It does not include Diane and Harolds founding of the Kure Beach Fantasy Christmas Show we have enjoyed for the past 19 years. It does not cover the support of the Heglar Wives, Sons and Daughters to their men and the town during hurricane recoveries and other emergencies.

Therefore The Naming Committee and Council are proud to name the new Fire Hall Heglar Station in recognition of the incredible service of this family to this town. Life Guards, Police Chief, Fire Chief, Emergency Manager, Councilman, Firefighters, Director Public Works, this family is part of the lasting fabric of this town and these men especially and their families most certainly deserve your gratitude.

Jerry and David grab each end of the item on the table, Harold please pull off the cover. The sign will be affixed to the building as shown on this slide.

This community does have HOA’s but I tell you Kure Beach is the entire community, the entire community is our neighborhood, so I ask you all to get involved, step up to serve as a volunteer as these and others on our town committees, the beauty and success of our town depends on it.

Now please adjourn to the outside of the building for the ribbon cutting.

Craig Bloszinsky

May Meeting — Chris Fonvielle on the Battle of Sugar Loaf

Monday, May 20, 2019  7:30 PM

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, May 20, 2019, at 7:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

This month Chris E. Fonvielle, Jr. will talk about “Sugar Loaf and the Battle for Wilmington, NC, 1865.” Learn about the strong Confederate defenses at Sugar Loaf and Union army efforts to overrun them to capture Wilmington, the Confederacy’s most important city.

Chris E. Fonvielle Jr. is from Wilmington, North Carolina, where he was born in 1953. He attended local public schools, including New Hanover High School, class of 1971. Chris was the first soccer-style placekicker in North Carolina football history when he kicked for Coach Glenn Sasser’s New Hanover High School Wildcats in 1970.

Chris also attended UNC Wilmington, graduating with a B.A. in Anthropology in 1978. He then served as the last curator of the Blockade Runners of the Confederacy Museum at Carolina Beach, North Carolina, before going off to graduate school in 1983. He received a M.A. in American history from East Carolina University in Greenville, North Carolina, where he studied with Dr. William N. Still Jr., the foremost authority on the Confederate States Navy. Chris subsequently studied Civil War history with Dr. Thomas L. Connelly at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, and from where he received his Ph.D. That makes Chris a Wildcat, Seahawk, Pirate, and Gamecock.

Fonvielle Explaining the Earthworks

Dr. Chris Fonvielle

Dr. Fonvielle is the author of articles and books on the Civil War and North Carolina history, including The Wilmington Campaign: Last Rays of Departing Hope; Wilmington and the Lower Cape Fear: An Illustrated History; Louis Froelich: Arms-Maker to the Confederacy; Fort Fisher 1865: The Photographs of T.H. O’SullivanFaces of Fort Fisher, 1861-1864; and To Forge a Thunderbolt: Fort Anderson and the Battle for Wilmington.





President’s Letter — May, 2019

By Elaine Henson

Kure Memorial Lutheran Church Part I

117 North 3rd Street in Kure Beach is the address of Kure Memorial Lutheran Church.  It is a block off of busy Fort Fisher Boulevard and a block from K Avenue.  The brick church building opened its doors for a dedication service on June 26, 1955, but the congregation had its beginnings before that.

Kure Lutheran’s story actually begins during the war years of 1942-43 and not as a church but with nondenominational Sunday School classes at the home of Mrs. W. O. Fickling located near the intersection of S. Fort Fisher Boulevard and K Avenue.  The adults who came were taught by retired Lutheran minister, Rev. B. D. Wessinger.

As the town filled with soldiers and their families, defense and shipyard workers and those with other war related jobs, the Sunday School outgrew Mrs. Fickling’s home.  The Sunday School began meeting in a vacant store building owned by Lawrence C. Kure.

Founders of Kure Beach, Mr. and Mrs. Hans Kure, Sr., had set aside land on 3rd Street for the time when a Lutheran church could be organized.  Hans and Ellen Kure deeded the land to St. Matthews Lutheran Church in Wilmington for safe keeping until the time arose.

In 1946, the Sunday School group reorganized as Kure Memorial Chapel with a constitution and soon after St. Matthews deeded the 3rd Street property to them as a nondenominational church.  Pastor Wessinger, Mrs. Fickling and Lawrence Kure began fund raising for a building with fish suppers and the like.

Soon they were able to purchase two Army barracks from Fort Fisher.  They put them together in the shape of a T and added a vestibule on the front replete with a steeple. The converted barracks were dedicated as Kure Memorial Chapel on December 1, 1946. Pastor Wessinger officiated assisted by Rev. Edwin Carter from Carolina Beach Methodist Church and retired Salvation Army Major John O’Beinne.

The first trustees of Kure Memorial Chapel were Fred Schenk, Linwood Flowers and Lewis E. Weinberg. The first wedding in the Chapel was on July 13, 1949 as Oscar B. Wrenn and Anna Lee Lewis were married by Rev. Edwin Carter and Dexter Moser. A. E. “Punky” Kure and Jean A. Kure were married there in 1952.

Sunday School was held every Sunday with a church service once a month held by Pastor Wessinger until ill health forced him to resign.  In the summer of 1949 Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary student Dexter Moser conducted services every Sunday.  In winter other students from the seminary, located in Columbia, South Carolina, held monthly services.  In the summers of 1950 and 1951 seminarian Jack Martin conducted Sunday services.

Next month:  Kure Memorial Lutheran Church, Part II


Statement by Chris Fonvielle on Confederate Monuments

From Wilmington Star News (August 29, 2018)

 “Our past has been good more often than not, but sometimes it has been bad and ugly. We must not forget any of it.”

It has been my honor and privilege to serve the people of the great State of North Carolina for more than half of my life, first as a professor of American history at East Carolina University in Greenville and then at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, my undergraduate alma mater in my hometown. I recently retired after a 22 year career in UNCW’s Department of History. Go Seahawks! I continue to serve as a member of the North Carolina Historical Commission, to which I was appointed by then-Gov. Pat McCrory in 2014.

In the aftermath of the horrific violence that occurred as a result of the controversy over the equestrian statue of Confederate General Robert E. Lee in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017, Gov. Roy Cooper petitioned the N.C. Historical Commission to give him the authority to relocate three Confederate statues — an obelisk to the Confederate dead of North Carolina; a statue to Private Henry Lawson Wyatt, the first Tar Heel killed in action during the war; and a memorial to North Carolina women of the Confederacy — from the grounds of the old State Capitol in historic downtown Raleigh to the Bentonville Battlefield State Historic Site in Johnston County. I was subsequently asked by the Deputy Secretary of the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources to serve with four other members of the Historical Commission on the newly formed Confederate Monuments Study Committee to seek clarification of the 2015 General Assembly’s Statute 100-2.1, Protection of Monuments, Memorials, and Works of Art, and to make recommendations to the commission concerning the governor’s request.

Ably led by David Ruffin of Raleigh, who chairs both the Historical Commission and the Confederate Monuments Study Committee, the group worked diligently for 11 months, seeking public input, legal advice, and historical precedence from academic historians.

In the end we proposed three resolutions to the commission for consideration. First, that there is a glaring over representation of monuments to the Confederacy on Capitol Square. Second, that the Historical Commission did not possess the authority, in its interpretation of state law, to nullify General Statute 100-2.1. Beyond the somewhat ambiguous legal issue involved, the committee recommended that the Confederate monuments not be relocated or removed. Third, in order to provide greater understanding of North Carolina’s role in the Civil War and Reconstruction, the committee resolved that the state should put up signage in the form of markers or plaques adjacent to the statues and memorials. For example, when were they erected and by whom? Did the politics of race and identity influence the people and organizations that funded the construction of the monuments? What are the debates concerning their representation in the twenty-first century?

To address the egregious imbalance of monuments to only North Carolina Confederates, the committee also advised the General Assembly to act “without delay” to appropriate funding for statues to ethnic minorities in the state during the Civil War era, beginning with one to African Americans. Eventually that effort might become a public/private venture and work to erect memorials to Native Americans and Unionists. The idea is to recognize the contributions of a greater cross section of North Carolinians during the Civil War.

Given the divisive political climate in our state and country today, the resolutions proposed by the Confederate Monuments Study Committee were controversial. Casting an ominous shadow over the proceedings of the Historical Commission in Raleigh on Aug. 22 was the toppling of “Silent Sam,” the statue to students from the University of North Carolina who fought for the Confederacy, by “protesters” less than two days before. Undeterred and unintimidated, the Historical Commission voted 9-1 in support of the committee’s resolutions.

I favored the commission’s decision and was satisfied that the Confederate Monuments Study Committee had offered a fair and reasonable compromise on the highly charged political, racial, and cultural issues. Along with my committee and commission colleagues, I gave long and deliberate thought to the governor’s petition and, admittedly, it has taken a personal toll.


Society Notes – May 2019

By Darlene Bright & Cheri McNeill

We’re doing it again this Summer!

Guided Tour

Historic Carolina Beach Boardwalk

10 am every Tuesday!

June 18, 2019 – September 3, 2019
50 minute walking tour 
Meet on the Boardwalk at the southeast corner of the new Hampton Inn, near the Chamber of Commerce Kiosk. Park at: the Municipal Parking lot across from the Town Marina, as close as you can get to the Hampton Inn. Donation requested: $10.00 per person.

Featured Business Member: Britt’s Donuts

You know tourist season is upon us when Britt’s Donuts opens for business!! They only make one kind of doughnut – glazed. It is by far the best glazed doughnut you will ever put in your mouth.  Hot is the only way to eat them.

Britt’s Donuts owned for years by Bobby and Maxine Nivens, have provided  the WORLD’S best donuts on the Carolina Beach boardwalk for over 75 years. But don’t ask for the recipe, it’s a secret.

Britt’s generally opens the weekend before Easter and is open Friday-Saturday-Sunday until Memorial Day. For the summer they are open from 8:30 AM until they run out, sometime in the evening, After Labor Day it’s back to just weekend hours. Don’t leave the island until you’ve had 1 or 20!

Carolina Beach Walk of Fame

On Saturday April 27, 2019, the Carolina Beach Walk of Fame Committee honored two new members to its rolls.  Charles E. “Bill” Nash Jr. was honored for his long time work with Boy Scout Troops 221 & 222.  Laurie Marshburn Taylor was honored for  years of work  with the Federal Point Help Center.  The committee will be accepting nominations for next year’s honorees until September 1, 2019. Applications may be picked up at the Federal Point History Center.

Can’t get enough Chris Fonvielle

Dr. Chris Fonvielle

Dr. Chris Fonvielle

June 2. Join Dr. Chris E. Fonvielle Jr., Professor Emeritus with the Dept. of History at UNC Wilmington, and Wilmington Water Tours for a river cruise and discussion about Wilmington and the Lower Cape Fear during the Civil War. Dr. Fonvielle, author of books and articles on Wilmington and North Carolina during the war, will talk about Wilmington’s transformation from a backwater seaport to the Las Vegas of the South, blockade running at Tar Heel port town, and Union military operations to capture the Confederacy’s most important seaport and city in 1864-1865.

Space on board the boat is limited so make reservations at https://wilmingtonwatertours.net or call (910) 338-3134. REMEMBER,     Wilmington Water Tours gives us a percent of your ticket price if you tell them you’re a member of Federal Point Historic Preservation Society.

Welcome and Thanks

  • The History Center recorded 82 visitors in March. There were 40 people in attendance at the April meeting. The History Center was used by the Got-Em-On Live Bait Club, the United Daughters of the Confederacy (UDC) and Walk of Fame Committee.
  • Welcome to new member, Tom Wetzel of Carolina Beach
  • Thanks to Jim Kohler for helping with the Newsletter.
  • Thanks to Linda Ogden and Jim Kohler for providing refreshments for the April meeting.

April Meeting — Richard Jones and the Venus Flytrap

Monday, April 15, 2019  –  7:30 PM

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, April 15, 2019, at 7:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

Our program this month will be presented by Richard Jones, who is licensed by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture to grow Venus Flytraps.  Richard will talk about the history and biology of our most famous native plant.

While it’s against the law to remove or poach Venus Flytraps from the wild, Richard Jones has gotten permission to legally harvest seeds to grow and sell the plant. He is licensed to grow the plants by the North Carolina Department of Agriculture’s endangered species division and is inspected on a regular basis.

“The requirements are that they be farm-raised and I do grow from seed,” Jones explained. “I produce the seed myself. It is all done in house and I have done it that way for many years.”

“It is not so much hard as it is slow,” Jones says. “For the first two or three years, they are just so tiny, they are just little pin-pricks of chlorophyll, and then for the third and certainly by the fourth year, you get a growing spurt. But up until that time, they just have to be protected from any kind of physical damage, or drying out, it is a slow, slow process.”

Jones sells the carnivorous plants at farmer’s markets but he likes to point out that this is the only place in the world that a Venus Flytrap will naturally occur. “About a 90-mile radius of Wilmington is it, for the world, and that makes people look at them in a new light very, very often, over and above just how magical it is to watch a plant catch an insect.”

While the majority of his plants are Venus Flytraps, Jones also sells pitcher plants, another carnivorous plant. He said they are not as regulated as the Flytraps.”

Photos: Venus Flytraps – StarNewsOnline

Venus Flytrap–Dobbs’ “Catch Fly”

On April 2, 1759, Governor Arthur Dobbs penned a letter to his naturalist friend in England, Peter Collinson. His words are the first written about the Venus Flytrap: “We have a kind of Catch Fly sensitive which closes upon anything that touches it, it grows in the Latitude 34 but not in 35°– I will try to save the seed here.”


President’s Letter — April, 2019

By Elaine Henson

Blockade Runner Museum

Blockade Runner Museum

Last month we featured the Picnic Shelter/Gazebo next to the Blockade Runner Museum which is the home of Federal Point Historic Preservation Society.  This month our focus is the Museum.

John Hanby Foard (1901-1977) opened the Blockade Runner Museum in the 1100 block of Lake Park Blvd., Carolina Beach, as a private venture on July 4, 1967, after years of research and construction. He moved from Newton, N.C. to Carolina Beach, living on Raleigh Avenue, in 1965 to begin the museum project.

Foard was a retired textile executive whose interest in the Civil War came from his maternal grandfather John Hazard Hanby (1841-1910).  Hanby was a Confederate veteran who owned the Atlantic View Hotel at Wrightsville Beach in the late 1880s when Wrightsville Beach was known as Atlantic View Beach.  Young Foard delighted in hearing stories of the war, blockade runners and Fort Fisher from his Grandfather Hanby which spurred his life long love of Civil War history.

The museum’s exhibits focused on Fort Fisher and the Wilmington port’s roles with ships getting through the Federal blockade carrying goods vital to the Confederate supply line.  There were several dioramas made by renowned model maker Lionel G. Forrest and ship modes by John Railey. It was open for ten years when Foard died unexpectedly in 1977, but remained open until 1983.

Civil War expert and retired UNCW Professor, Dr. Chris Fonvielle, worked at the museum as curator from 1979-1983.  He recalls that when he put the key in to lock the door on the last day, the key broke off in the lock.  After closing, many of the museums displays went to the Cape Fear Museum where they remain today.  One is a diorama of the Battle of Fort Fisher with lights and sound and the other is a very large model of Wilmington’s waterfront during the Civil War.

In 1989, the Town of Carolina Beach purchased the Blockade Runner Museum and adjoining property in the 1100 block of Lake Park Boulevard for $398,000.  Town officials and employees moved into the renovated museum in 1990 from the Municipal Building across from the marina on the corner of Carl Winner Drive and Canal Drive. In 1999, after record hurricane flooding in the Municipal Building, they added on to the remodeled former museum making room for the police, recreation and other departments.

Twenty years later we have the handsome town complex, separate Recreation Center and converted the picnic shelter, to the Federal Point History Center, on the former Blockade Runner Museum grounds.

In 2016, four of the smaller dioramas from the Blockade Runner Museum were installed in the atrium in the Carolina Beach Town Complex.  One depicts the drowning of Rose O’Neal Greenhow when the blockade Runner Condor went down in 1864; one shows an auction house scene where goods from the blockade runners were sold; another shows Union sailors boarding a blockade runner; and the last is a recreation of Lt. Commander William B. Cushing’s raid on Smithfield, present day Southport.  Visitors can view the dioramas during regular business hours at the town complex.