Oral History – Joseph Ryder Lewis Jr. – Part 3

Interviewed by Ann Hertzler and Jeannie Gordon

School Years: 1930s – June, 1944

When I first started to school, we were living over here on the highway; and there was no school down here.

Joseph Ryder Lewis, Jr.

Joseph Ryder Lewis, Jr.

There had previously been one down there somewhere, close to where Dow Plant used to be. That was before my time.

But it was gone when I came along.  Mrs. Hines, I think, she was a teacher over there. That’s the Mrs. Hines of the Senior Center.

My first five years of school I had to ride a school bus to Myrtle Grove. That’s up on the Sound about 5 or 6 miles. When I was getting ready for 6th grade, Carolina Beach was supposed to have a new school built, completed and ready to occupy when I started my 6th grade. But they hadn’t completed it, so we had to go on the Boardwalk to the Old City Hall, with a two-room operation. That was 1937-38, I think. It was a one through six. Two rooms, so in one room was 4, 5 and 6; the other room was 1, 2 and 3. The 7th grade, I was bused to Winter Park Grade School. The 8th grade, I was bused to Tileston in Wilmington.

Carolina Beach School 1937-38 year

Carolina Beach School – Class of 1937-1938
Grades 4, 5, 6.
[Click for larger image – and student names]

I’ll tell you what, if you got in trouble at school, you could get a ruler on  your hand and slap it. The teacher would do that …that was about the easiest thing they punished you with. Back in those days, too, if they found out at home, instead of them getting after the teacher or the school department, you got another one.

One interesting thing was when we were in the 6th grade at that school on the Boardwalk. The boardwalk right in front of that building was wood, wasn’t concrete like it is now, with cracks in it. Well, at break time we would go look down through these cracks and you’d see money down there, quite often. We would get a piece of bubble gum and stick it on a long handle stick and stick it down there to get that money. And then we would go to Mr. Cliff Smith’s store down on the corner and get us an extra snack.

And at that point in time, you could get under the boardwalk on the front. It was hunting money by just walking along the edge of the shore, on the beach. You can’t find coins today, I don’t know why it’s gone, I don’t think there’s much of it there today, but you could go along there and there were coins laying there and you’d just pick ‘em up.

School Bus 1930's

School Bus 1930’s

I wasn’t in basketball or baseball or football. I wasn’t in any of it. And one reason was that you had to ride the school bus to school and up in Wilmington, if you didn’t ride that school bus back home in the afternoon, how would you get home? See, New Hanover High School is in the 14 or 1500 block and we could walk down to 3rd street and it wasn’t too bad to get a ride with some men who lived down here but worked in Wilmington. And they would be coming home and pick you up.

I got along very well in high school. But I graduated in June of ’44, had gone through 12 grades, and I was 17 years old. My birthday is the latter part of October, so see I wouldn’t be 18 until the latter part of October. You had to register for the draft when you turned 18 and you could join the Marine Corp or the Army, but you couldn’t join the Navy after you turned 18. You could up until you turned 18, so I was going to join the Navy just before I turned 18, as a volunteer.

 

Olde Salty’s on the Boardwalk

Featured Business Member June, 2014

  – by Tony Phillips

Olde Saltys Exterior

Olde Salty’s on the Boardwalk – (click)

Olde Salty’s is located at 3 Boardwalk Ocean Front, Carolina Beach, NC. It’s a restaurant and bar owned by Brenda Armes. Brenda has owned Olde Salty’s since April 15th, 1994.

She also owned The Landmark restaurant at one time, but says she closed it “because she was competing with herself.”

Brenda and Olde Salty’s has survived over 5 hurricanes including Fran in 1996 which took off the front of her restaurant. That’s when Brenda opened the rear of her restaurant up as a smaller place named ‘A Little On the Side’. She did this so that her employees would still have jobs while the 2 months of construction restored the front.

Tony Phillips

Brenda Armes

Olde Salty’s is open year round and has much to offer visitors and locals. Regardless of the season, fresh food is served every day. Team Trivia is played each Wednesday night during the off season. Bowling competition is held in the back on Tuesdays and Shag dancing on Sundays. Brenda celebrates all festive holidays especially St. Patrick’s Day when she famously leads her own parade with shillelagh in hand around the boardwalk.

Old Salty's Interior

Old Salty’s

When asked how she came up with the name for Olde Salty’s,  Brenda smiled and winked telling us that it was pulled from a hat in 1992 by then town Councilman Rick Burrows. I would love to have that slip of paper today.

Bring the family and friends to Olde Salty’s any day of the week for great food and fun but remember, unattended children will be fed to the sharks and no screamin’ kids are tolerated.

Olde Salty's Shuffleboard

Olde Salty’s Shuffleboard

As Brenda says, “The Boardwalk is the best place in the world!”

Olde Salty’s on Facebook

 

Happy Birthday to Us! FPHPS Founded: March 28, 1994

Can you believe the Federal Point Historic Preservation Society was TWENTY ONE years old as of March, 2015?  Here are a few highlights from the Society’s early history.

Ballroom Blast, 1994

Ballroom Blast, 1994

The 1990’s

  October 21, 22, 23, 1994: First fundraiser “Ocean Plaza Ballroom Blast” Featuring Chicken Hicks

  June 22, 1994: First Speaker, Catherine Bishir of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, Historic Preservation Section

∞  Fall 1994: First Newsletter, editor Sandy Jackson

∞  December 1994 – October 1995: First Preservation Campaign – Protection and preservation of the historic plantation ruins of Sedgeley Abbey

∞  March 1995: Lighthouse logo, created by Martin Pebbles, was adopted

∞  Spring 1995: Agreement with Town of Carolina Beach for the construction of the Beauregard Shipwreck Overlook

∞  April 1995: Bingo fundraiser

∞  April 1995: Ocean Plaza and Joy Lee Apartments nominated to the National Register of Historic Places

∞  July 1995: Fort Fisher Revetment Project, advocacy, support, and ground  breaking

∞  October 20-22, 1995: Second Annual Ocean Plaza Reunion

∞  March, 1996:Received $10,000 grant from North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources for compiling an inventory of known historic sites and cartographic inventory of Federal Point, directed by Sandy Jackson

∞  May 26th, 1996: Hosted a celebration marking the 50th Anniversary of the Ocean Plaza Building. Wilmington Concert Band performed, followed by a fashion show in keeping with the original opening in 1946

∞  August 18, 1996:  Participated in Belk “Preservation Celebration” fundraiser

∞  June 22, 1997:  Oakdale Cemetery guided tour by E. F. “Gene” Risley Jr.

∞  October 18, 1997:  Barbeque fundraiser

∞  November 15, 1997:  Traditional Holiday Decorating Workshop, hosted by Fort Fisher State Historic Site, with demonstrations by staff members of Tryon Palace

∞  February, 1998:  First Cookbook

∞  February, 1999: – Entered into a lease with the  Town of Carolina Beach for Gazebo structure to be converted into the Federal Point History Center

∞  March 1998:Published Monuments & Markers of Federal Point, North Carolina compiled by Sandy Jackson

∞  May, 1998: Fundraiser: Raffle of framed art print of the Federal Point Lighthouse by Kay Robbins

∞  Summer, 1998: Entered into an agreement with MOTSU to maintain, prepare signage and protect the Newton Homesite and Graveyard. Work began with construction of a wooden fence

Newton Homesite and Cemetery

Newton Homesite and Cemetery

∞  February, 1998: – House Plaque Committee was formed and drafted guidelines for plaguing historic buildings

∞  September, 1998: – the first historic plaques were awarded to the Loughlin Cottage, Burnett Beach Cottage, and Ocean Plaza Ballroom, all over 50 years old and of significance to the community

∞  December 5, 1998: “Down East” Barbecue fundraiser

∞  April 1999: Sugar Loaf Battle marker moved from Dow Rd. to Federal Point History Center

∞  May 23, 1999: First fundraising Cruise – Aboard Pirate IV

∞  June 27, 1999: Commemorative Ceremony held celebrating the listing of Newton Homesite and Graveyard in the National Register of Historic Places

∞  October 22, 1999: Ground breaking for renovation of the Gazebo structure to become the Federal Point History Center

∞  View a Slideshow of the May, 2000 Grand Opening of the History Center.

Reenactment Sale

Fort Fisher Museum – Reenactment Sale — Kenny Koch, Darlene Bright, Leslie Bright

 

Atlantic Towers

Featured Business Member May, 2014

Atlantic Towers

Atlantic Towers

Atlantic Towers is an eleven-story high-rise condominium complex located oceanfront in beautiful Carolina Beach, North Carolina.  Atlantic Towers offers unique and attractive one and two bedroom suites.

All suites are fully furnished, including a full kitchen. Each living/dining room area opens onto a private balcony with an extraordinary view of Carolina Beach and the Atlantic Ocean.

We also offer an oceanfront outdoor pool, indoor heated pool, gazebo with a sundeck and grilling area, video game room, and laundry facility for our guests’ convenience.

Wireless internet is available in each room.  Atlantic Towers is the premier resort on Carolina Beach.

 

Atlantic Towers
1615 S Lake Park Blvd,
Carolina Beach, NC 28428
(910) 458-8313

 

Oral History – Joseph Ryder Lewis Jr. – Part 2

Interviewed by Ann Hertzler and Jeannie Gordon

My daddy had the house built from his World War II bonus or something. I think it was a $1000 and that pretty well closed the house in. So I was probably 2 or 3 years old when we actually moved into the house. That was part of the Lewis estate. My grandparents, on the Lewis side, deeded out parcels of land to their various children.

Their main activity was farming or fishing. And right across the street [from the History Center] was the main garden area, up until the middle 50’s or so, and now, when I got hold of it, it was classified as wetlands. Couldn’t do anything on it. But it used to be main farmland over there. Sweet potatoes were very important, a very important crop. Collards, a very important crop. They had watermelon patches, they had soy beans and they had other things for the animals.

Joseph Ryder Lewis, Jr.

Joseph Ryder Lewis, Jr.

Where we were living, out on the highway, was not in the town of Carolina Beach. The town of Carolina Beach started at the first street that goes across from St. Joseph Street. That went up there to that nursing home. That was the northern end of Carolina Beach.

My parents would not allow my brother and I, who was a couple years younger than I am, to go down there and roam around that beach, or to go up on the Boardwalk. That’s when we were young, unless we were escorted. You see, a lot of this stuff that went on, well like, Jimmy Davis and Milton Warwick, who came along later than I did, they were right there in town where they were involved in everything. I was in the country. And we had a big garden out back of our house, pole beans, sweet potatoes, pig pen. We had hogs, milk goats and milk cows and we did have a nanny goat.

The house that my grandparents lived in, I became the owner of it much later, but it was down where that first development is, just this side of the movie theater…Carolina Beach Village, isn’t it? All right, the first house there, as you drive in there, to the left, would have been right on the grounds where my grandparent’s home was. The sound was there, but at low tide you could not float a boat. You could walk out in the mud if you wanted to, but you might be up to your knees or further in the mud. There was no water. Eventually, the first thing that was dredged was a little 80 ft. canal on the other side and the fill dirt from that was used to help build Canal Drive. This was not made into a nice waterway area until about the late 50’s or whenever the town of Carolina Beach had the first berm project, planned on good sand underneath that mud out there. They dredged it out.

 

I don’t remember when we got power. I was probably 6 or 7 years old, or a little older, when we got electricity along there. We finally got a well with an electric pump on it. But we had the outhouse as long as I was growing up.

We had chickens. I remember one time Mom said, “that old rooster out there is getting after your baby sister, I want you boys, me and my brother, to kill that thing. We’re going to eat him Sunday. Well, we’d killed chickens before, but the way we did it was you had to hold the chicken with his head on a piece of wood and the other would chop his head off. You’d get blood on you and all that kind of stuff. Well, we’d seen some of these older people take one and wring his neck. We decided we were gonna wring his neck. So we did it. But the point was we just swung him around and when we finally turned him loose, he just started wobbling on off. Then we had to go catch him again and kill him the way we normally would have.

You didn’t take a bath every day, and a lot of times, one of the good times to take a bath was when my mother was washing clothes out in the backyard. We had an old iron pot out there, you had fire around it. That’s where you got hot water and that’s where the clothes were put in to clean them. And then you took them out and put them in these tubs for rinsing. Well, a lot of times we got our bath in there.

We had a little ole scooter, we got that for Christmas one time, and that was a big deal, just a little ole tiny two-wheeled scooter that we could ride on the highway—traffic was very, very little.

We did get to swim a little bit in the ocean and my daddy and my brother and I did a lot of floundering. But it was at night. He had a gasoline lantern, and we would go over to the river. There were plenty of places you could go to the river back then, Sugar Loaf was one of them. Just drive right there. And you’d go at low tide and the wind had to be the right way for you to do it. And you’d walk right along the edge of the water. The flounder would be bedded up right in the edge of the water and the only thing you’d see is his eyes. But that’s the way we did our main fishing, and we did a lot of that floundering. You had a gig and you stuck it through ‘em and then you took your hand and put it underneath and brought him up and put him on a string or line and we’d just drag them in the water behind us.

May 19, 2014 – Daniel Ray Norris: Britt’s Donuts

Daniel Norris

Daniel Ray Norris

 

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, May 19, 7:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

This month’s speaker will be author and publisher Daniel Ray Norris. He will be speaking on his new book Britt’s Donuts: Forever Sweet which he co-authored with Halyn Prusa.

Beautifully designed and seriously researched, Forever Sweet traces the origins and growth of this most beloved family business. Behind the scenes donut making secrets are finally revealed. Never before published photos illustrate its history and interviews with current and past employees showcase the enduring impact that Britt’s Donuts has had on people’s lives. Daniel will, of course, be available to sign purchased books after the meeting.

Britt’s Donuts – Forever Sweet and many other books are available at the FPHPS Bookstore.  Review Daniel’s book on our online Bookstore.

Britt's Donuts - Daniel Norris

Daniel Ray Norris, author

Carolina Beach Fire Department History

In 1937, 35 local men saw the need for better local fire protection at Carolina Beach. Their equipment included one hose reel and two lengths of fire hose, the bare minimum to fight a fire.

A few months later, they were the recipientsCarolina Beach FD Helmet of a hearse car. They converted this into a fire truck. In addition, an unremembered town in upstate North Carolina, gave them an older model fire truck.

And in 1939 1940, a tragic fire ravaged almost all of the central business district. Just about every building from Harper Avenue to the Fisherman’s Pier, including the recently constructed Hotel Bame, was destroyed.

Carolina Beach Fireman PlateWith the aid of Wilmington’s Fire Department, the Carolina Beach fire fighters fought the blaze all night, and saved the remaining buildings.

It set the stage for better fire protection and ensured that today’s modern Fire Departments in both Carolina Beach and Kure Beach (including Federal Point) are well equipped and properly trained.

Excerpted from:
Carolina Beach, NC
Friends & Neighbors Remembered – Volume 2
By Daniel Ray Norris

See more local pictures and Daniel Norris’ narrative
http://www.carolinabeach.net/book/cb2 preview.pdf

 

 

The Ocean Plaza

Ocean Plaza - SlapdashBy Leslie Bright & Daniel Norris

Eugene and Marie Reynolds known as Mom and Pop, knew better days were coming as World War II ended in 1945 and soldiers were coming home. Big bands were the rave of the day and the new money could be made on the north end of the Boardwalk of Carolina Beach with the building of a large enough facility to house big bands and large crowds.

The Reynolds had purchased four and a half lots and a bowling alley on the northeast corner of Harper Avenue and Carolina Beach Avenue North in August 1942, from L. M. Massey. [2015: current construction site of The Hampton Inn and Suites]. They decided to remove the bowling alley and make this the footprint for their new Ocean Plaza building.

The building would contain a bathhouse and café on the first floor; a large cabaret or ballroom with bandstand area on the second floor; and a small apartment on the third floor. Work began to build the Ocean Plaza after the beach season of 1945 and continued through the winter and spring of 1946 under the direction of Mr. Shirley, a local contractor.

Once completed, the Ocean Plaza was a sight to behold. It became the new “Crown Jewel” of the Carolina Beach boardwalk. It was opened for business on May 31, 1946, which was Memorial Day weekend.

Bill Grassick and his orchestra, featuring the lovely singer, Betty McHugh, performed to an audience who paid $2.00 per person to attend. Even though the big band era was waning, the Ocean Plaza remained the center of activity as new trends changed musical entertainment.

The Reynolds sold the Ocean Plaza around 1950 and it changed hands several times before May 1961 when E. F. Courie Sr. and his wife, Rosabelle, purchased the property.

Through the years, many notable entertainers performed to large crowds at the Ocean Plaza. Jerry Lee Lewis, Chubby Checkers, Fats Domino, Bo Diddley, and The Embers, to mention a few, attracted audiences from all over.

The Jitterbug, bob, shag, rock & roll, twist and every variety of dance imagined occurred at the Ocean Plaza through the years.

With growth and development of better lodging facilities, the need for a bathhouse on the boardwalk diminished. The bathhouse at the Ocean Plaza was converted into a night club.

During the 80’s and 90’s the entire boardwalk fell into decline causing neglect to many of its structures.

In spite of the decline, the Ocean Plaza remained open struggling at times to do so. The Courie family, including sons, Eli Jr. and Louis, continued ownership until April 1993, when the Ocean Plaza was sold to Leslie and Darlene Bright and son, Sam Bright.

The second floor ballroom was renovated again and opened after several years of inactivity as the private club, Wranglers Dance Hall and Saloon, and later as the Shag Club.

The Brights sold Ocean Plaza to Robert Russo on January 31, 2000 and his Club Tropics was installed on the second floor. Mr. Russo operated Ocean Plaza until April 5, 2006, when he sold to Russ Maynard.

Leslie Bright – Federal Point Historic Preservation Society
From:  Carolina Beach, NC – Images & Icons of a Bygone Era

Source:  SlapDash Publishing, LLC, 2006

Construction begins on boardwalk hotel at Carolina Beach – 2015/02/03

 


OCEAN PLAZA T-SHIRTS –   Only available at the Federal Point History Center!

http://federal-point-history.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/Gift-Shop-4.jpgThe OP’s gone but not forgotten. But we still have our CLASSIC Ocean Plaza T-shirts and Sweatshirts.

We’ve ordered a variety of sizes and they come in sky blue and daisy yellow.

They make great gifts or mementos and are sure to start a conversation with every ol’timer you meet.

Captain John W. Harper – Obituary

Birth:     Nov. 28, 1856Capt John Harper
Masonboro
New Hanover County
North Carolina, USA

Death:     Sep. 18, 1917
Wilmington
New Hanover County
North Carolina, USA

Captain John W. Harper, of the steamer Wilmington, as thousands knew him, passed away yesterday morning at the James Walker Memorial Hospital, where he had gone for treatment. It is hard to realize that the big-hearted, generous, jovial and popular Captain John Harper is dead and that death has closed a warm personal friendship that has never been varied for nearly thirty years. Yet it is even longer than that since he has been the friend of people in Wilmington from his boyhood days up to now. He counted his warm friends by the thousands, and they are to be found all over North Carolina and far beyond the confines of his own State.

Sorrow, therefore, will be widespread because Captain Harper has passed from this world and has closed a life of great usefulness to Wilmington and to the people of this city and Southport There were sad faces in Wilmington yesterday morning when it became known that the end had come. Many a generous deed is credited up to Captain Harper, for he was a friend upon whom the humblest and highest could depend for sympathy and help. His heart went out to poor people and there was none that could not have an outing on the several excursion steamers that he has operated on the Cape Fear. His name is blessed among thousands, and we cannot recall the death of a man who will be more universally mourned.

Captain Harper was rugged and brave and tender. Invariable courtesy was one of his characteristics, and everybody felt safe when he was at the helm. He practically made Carolina Beach and it was he who made the Cape Fear and Brunswick Bay excursion and outing waters for thousands.

The steamers which he specially popularized were the Sylvan Grove, the Passport, and the Wilmington. His greetings and smiles made him thousands of friends among the children as well as grown people of all classes. He was specially solicitous for the safety and pleasure of women and children, and white and colored can bear testimony to his courtesy, deference and kindness. He was affable and accommodating always, and his memory will be ever cherished by all who knew him.

The death of Captain Harper brings a distinct loss to Wilmington and Southport, but it is his family that has been most sorely bereaved. He loved those who were near to him, and in the sorrow that has befallen them they will have the deep condolence and sincere sympathy of a host of those who admired and loved the genial captain of the outing steamers which he commanded for so many years.

(Wilmington Star, Sept. 19, 1917)

Steamboat Owner and developer of Carolina Beach also ran a train, “Shoo Fly” to Carolina Beach
 
 
Family links: Capt John Harper - Gravestone
 Parents:
  William Riley Harper (1816 – 1877)
  Henrietta Lloyd Harper (1820 – 1899)
 
 Spouses:
  Esther Julia Foley Harper (1864 – 1897)
  Ella Chitty Strupe Harper (1877 – 1945)
 
 Children:
  Louise Foley Harper Fox (1886 – 1970)*
  John William Harper (1897 – 1918)*
  Catherine Ruede Harper Sewell (1904 – 1985)*
  Ella Chitty Harper (1905 – 1917)*
  James Sprunt Harper (1910 – 1929)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:Capt John Harper - Gravestone
Oakdale Cemetery
Wilmington
New Hanover County
North Carolina, USA
Plot: Sec R Lot 14
 
Created by: John Evans
Find A Grave Memorial# 34184608

 

Oral History – Isabel Lewis Foushee – Part 2: ‘Lewis Grocery’

By Ann Hertzer – from her interview with Isabell Foushee on January 12, 2007

Lewis Grocery at K Street and 421: Mrs. Lewis, her son, bus station sign and kerosene pump.

Lewis Grocery at K Street and Hwy 421
Mrs. Lewis, her son, bus station sign and kerosene pump.

When Isabel Lewis was 13 or 14, before World War II ended, the family moved to Kure Beach.

Her parents, Ed and Gertie Lewis, opened the Lewis Grocery or Kure Beach Grocery at the stop light at the southwest corner of K Ave at 421 Hwy – an old frame building that has since been torn down and rebuilt in brick.

The Lewis Grocery had 2 gas pumps out front and also had a kerosene pump at the end of the building, sold for cook stoves in cottages. It had an apartment at the end of the grocery store and a little store room. The Citco Station is now there.

A service station was located catty corner from the Lewis store; Canoutas Café where the vacant lot is now.

Gus from Burlington tried to sell them the Big Daddy’s land for $10,000. He might as well have said 10 million because Isabel said they didn’t have two nickels to rub together. Mr. Flowers opened a grocery store on K Avenue. When they moved to Kure Beach, the town was not incorporated yet. The governor appointed Ed Lewis to the first town council.

Because meat was rationed during the war, dad would get a cow or a bull off the island, have it butchered in Lumberton, and bring it back to the store to sell the meat. Isabel stood on a stool by the scales and told how many ration stamps were needed. People were more interested in how many rationing stamps it took than how much money it cost. They wanted some beef. When doors opened at 7 o’clock, a line would be waiting. One day while selling meat, Isabel found out that it was the pet “Booie”.  She just had to walk out.

Her folks built and ran a fish market at the Lewis grocery. Bob Ford (Margaret’s husband) worked at the store some and later rented it. If local fish wasn’t available locally, they’d get it from Failes wholesale fish house in Wilmington.

During the depression we didn’t have enough money to go to a bank. Mother would say “We’re banking and getting change in the Wilmington bank.” Back then, Monkey Junction was a big intersection with a grocery-service store combination and monkeys out back in cages.  About 1950 the Bank of Carolina Beach opened.

Going to the Carolina Beach boardwalk once a week was a special treat. Everyone would sit on the plank boardwalk (now cement) on the ocean side and watch the parade of tourists. We couldn’t wander away. We played around on the board walk and went on the rides. Most of the games came in at the end or after the war – penny pitch tosses, target shooting with rifles, or ball games to knock the milk bottles over – lots of tourist traps.

Many soldiers were down at Fort Fisher. Target planes would fly over. The machine gun embankments were out at the edge of the water. They would have the big guns out there, too. During anti-air craft training the pilings were shot out from under the Ft. Fisher Pier and finally went in the water. Isabel remembers going out at night on the beach and watching fires out on the ocean where the ships had been torpedoed. One German sub shot the land one time just above Kure Beach. During that time, we could not have lights shining at night. Dark blinds were needed.

Fort Fisher brought soldiers in by the 1000s for anti-air craft training. Convoys of big trucks would rumble by for 3 or 4 hours at a time. My folks’ property joined the base property. The MPs went up and down the road that divided the two properties. We could hear the men and the bugle playing taps every afternoon and we knew they were taking the flag down. We got to know a lot of them.

Isabel and her husband built the Center Pier two blocks this side of Wilmington Beach near the big high rise. They opened the pier the first of July; Hurricane Hazel came along October 15, 1954 and took it out. During the eye of Hurricane, her husband came back with a box of fish hooks in one hand and a piece of a reel in the other. It took the pier and the tackle shop down and moved the septic tanks out on the sand.

Isabel was out of high school 12 years before her three boys got up in school. Then she went to Wilmington College for two years and to East Carolina to finish a bachelors and a master’s degree. She then taught English at UNCW.