The History of Kure Beach: the Family Beach

By Nancy Gadzuk

Brenda Fry Coffey, FPHPS Board member, life-long resident of Kure Beach, and author of Kure Beach (Images of America) spoke at the November 19, 2018 meeting of the Federal Point Historic Preservation Society. She spoke on the History of Kure Beach: the Family Beach.

Brenda focused her presentation on the people of Kure Beach, primarily the Kure family and other families who lived in the town during the 1940’s and 1950’s.

Her presentation was a family photo album featuring these Kure Beach families, among others: The Kures, starting with Hans Anderson Kure Sr. and his wife Ellen in the late 1800’s, to Punky and Jean Kure more recently. The Kures purchased 900 acres of land, which became the town of Kure Beach. Kure’s Pier and Beach was “where you are always welcome.”

She talked about the Lewis family: Ed and Gertie Lewis ran a combination gas station, restaurant, and fish market in Kure Beach, and had turtles in a pen that kids could touch.

The Walter Winner family lived and fished right on the water at Fort Fisher. Walter was known for having caught the second manta ray ever off the Atlantic Coast. Teddy Roosevelt caught the first.

Pictures of Mitsn Saunders, the Glenn Flowers family, the Frys, Heglars, Canoutas, and others were shown during Brenda’s presentation.

The buildings in the background of many of these family pictures provide a story of how Kure Beach has changed over the last 75 years. Many of the houses were simple wooden barracks that families bought for $175 each, and placed on lots bought from Lawrence Kure for $200. Walter Winner had wheels on the bottom of his house (on Battle Acre Road near the Fort Fisher monument) so he could move it himself.

The Kure Beach post office was not heated or insulated, and certainly not air- conditioned. Mitsn Saunders, the first postmaster, used to bring the stamps home in the summer and steam them apart since the humidity in the building made them stick together.

In the 1950’s, the Kure’s house was the largest in town, a brick ranch with 2 bedrooms, a living room, dining room and even a garage. It was demolished in 2017 to make way for something bigger.

The site of the Winner house and small store at the corner of Fort Fisher Boulevard and F Avenue is now a massive glass house that’s been featured in Wrightsville Beach Magazine and the Star News.

The barracks are mostly gone and replaced with much larger houses. But Kure Beach is still a family beach, and the fish still bite – or not – as they did during the times Brenda shared with us in her presentation.

 

Holiday Shopping – FPHPS Gift Shop

 

Local Flavor - CookbookDoes everyone in your extended family have one of our Local Flavor Cookbooks?  How about friend and neighbors!

At $25.00 it’s the perfect homegrown gift for every cook you know. It is full of “cookable” recipes mostly built from ingredients you already have in your pantry or can pick up at any local grocery store.  And, it has a section with historic highlights of well known restaurants of Federal Point.

Don’t forget our t-shirts are a real bargain at  $12.00 each..  We’ve got plenty of the Society shirts in every size and color.  We’re also well stocked with the Ocean Plaza BIRTHPLACE of the SHAG shirts.  Anyone with a history of the Boardwalk would love this reflection of  our history.

Books, Books, Books! We have lots of books that relate to the history and culture of our area.  The two most important are Elaine Henson’s Carolina Beach in Postcards and Brenda Coffey’s new Images of America: Kure Beach.  Both are well researched and would be a great present to anyone who’s interested in the history of our local area.

Carolina Beach in PostcardsCarolina Beach, North Carolina, has been a destination for beachgoers, boaters, and fishermen since the 1880s. Visitors came first by the combination of river steamers and a train and later by automobiles to seek respite from the summer’s heat and the daily grind. This book shares the history of this seaside community through the postcards its visitors sent home. From the early hand colored cards printed in Germany to the modern chrome cards of today, we see the people and places of Carolina Beach.

Kure Beach derived its name from a Danish immigrant named Hans Anderson Kure, Sr. He began acquiring land in the area in 1891, and  by 1900, he had purchased 900 acres just south of Carolina Beach to Fort Fisher.

He established the Kure Land and Development Company and in 1913 produced a map of Fort Fisher Sea Beach, which would later become Kure’s Beach and eventually Kure Beach. In 1923, the first wooden fishing pier on the Atlantic coast was constructed by Lawrence Kure.

DAN PRI, one of the first surfboard companies on the East Coast, was also established at Kure Beach.

The area is rich in historical significance from Verrazzano’s discovery to Cape Fear Indians, pirates, lighthouses, the “Rocks,” the Ethel Dow Chemical Plant and the community’s role in both the Civil War and World War II.

 

November Meeting – Brenda Coffey – Kure Beach

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, November 19, 2018 at 7:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

Our speaker this month is a lifelong resident and member of the Federal Point Historic Preservation Society, Brenda Fry Coffey.

In 1943, Brenda, her mother and father (Fundy and Mary Lee Fry), along with her grandfather and grandmother (Charlie “Pa” and Ada “Ma” Fry), moved to Kure Beach from Lumberton, North Carolina.  Her father and grandfather worked in the shipyard during World War II in Wilmington building Liberty ships. After the war, they opened a restaurant at Kure Beach called “Fundy’s”.

Brenda is retired from the New Hanover County Department of Emergency Management.  She currently serves on the Board of the Federal Point Historic Preservation Society and is actively involved in her church, Kure Beach First Baptist.

The concept of recording the history of Kure Beach was sparked over a lunch conversation with Punky and Jean Kure over ten years ago,  Thanks to the generosity of many, it has been her honor to make this history a reality.

 

Book Launch!

Kure Beach: Images of America
Arcadia Books, $21.99

Federal Point History Center

Saturday April 21 .. 1 pm – 3 pm

Please join author, Brenda Coffey, who will be signing books and postcards.

Kure Beach derived its name from a Danish immigrant named Hans Anderson Kure Sr. He began acquiring land in the area in 1891, and by 1900, he had purchased 900 acres just south of Carolina Beach to Fort Fisher.

He established the Kure Land and Development Company and in 1913 produced a map of Fort Fisher Sea Beach, which would later become Kure’s Beach and eventually Kure Beach.

In 1923, the first wooden fishing pier on the Atlantic coast was constructed by Lawrence Kure. DAN PRI, one of the first surfboard companies on the East Coast, was also established at Kure Beach.

The area is rich in historical significance—from Verrazzano’s discovery to Cape Fear Indians, pirates, lighthouses, the “Rocks,” the Ethy Dow Chemical Plant, and the community’s role in both the Civil War and World War II. Most cherished, though, are the people that loved living a relaxed, peaceful life in their “paradise.”

 

Howard Hewett’s Legacy

from James Hewett:
“My cousin Howard Hewett passed away Monday Oct 6th in Vermont. His funeral will be Saturday in Texas.”

Howard Hewett

Between 2014 and 2015 from his home in Jones Creek, TX, Howard actively wrote many articles for the Federal Point History Center recalling his childhood years living just outside the gates to Fort Fisher.

Howard was a great writer with the amazing ability to recall details from his younger years on Federal Point.

Howard last visited Carolina and Kure Beach in November, 2015 and was the guest speaker at the Federal Point History Center.

Share some of Howard’s memories of Federal Point here.

From the President – June, 2017

By Elaine Henson

Andrew Emile Kure was born March 30, 1893, the youngest child to Hans Anderson and Ellen Miller Kure.  His parents had emigrated from Denmark in the late 1880s, first to Charleston, SC, and later Wilmington where they formed a ship chandler business.

When Carolina Beach was begun as a resort in 1887, the family bought property and started businesses in the new beach community.  In early 1900s they purchased large tracts of land near Fort Fisher.

Hans and Ellen Kure formed the Kure Land and Development Company in 1915 with their four sons, William Ludwig, Hans Adolph, Lawrence Christian and Andrew Emile, thus becoming the founders of Kure Beach.  They also had a daughter, Elene H. Kure Shands.

Twenty-four year old Andrew E. Kure enlisted in WWI on December, 15, 1917, in Lumberton, NC, leaving his job at the Atlantic Coast Line.

He served with the American Expeditionary Force in France, being promoted to Corporal in the Signal Corps in July, 1918, and then to Sergeant in the Air Service in September, 1918.  He was discharged June 9th of 1919.

He returned to his job as auditor in the freight receipt department at ACL and remained there until 1945.

In 1925 he married Elizabeth Hall Singletary.  The couple welcomed their only child, Andrew E. Kure, Jr., in 1927.  Andrew’s mother, Ellen, declared that the baby looked “punky” the first time she saw him. The nickname stuck and has followed their son for 90 years at this writing.

After retiring from the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad, Andrew became more involved in the family land and rental businesses and helping to care for his oldest Uncle William L. “Cap” Kure.

Andrew died in 1950 and is buried in the family plot at Oakdale Cemetery in Wilmington.

(right) Andrew Emile Kure, Sr. and Betty Singletary Kure, parents of Andrew E. Kure, Jr, better known as “Punky” of Kure Beach, NC

 

 

 

Kure Beach Fishing Pier

By Tony (Lem) Phillips

Kure Beach Fishing Pier has been around since 1923. It was first built by L.C. Kure whose father owned most of what is now Kure Beach, NC. It is officially the oldest pier on the Atlantic coast. The pier is currently owned by descendent Mike Robertson.

We at the Federal Point History Center take great pride in that Kure Beach Fishing Pier is one of the Society’s longtime Business Members. Mike and his crew just reopened the pier for the 2017 season on Friday, March 31st to a huge turnout. Anthony, Ronny, Russ, Jim, Kris, and Amy are just a few of the great folks who take care of us when we visit.

We encourage you to stop by the pier to go in and look around. The pier has the long walk out to the “Tee” with a spectacular view looking north all the way to Wrightsville Beach and south to Fort Fisher. Try their popular ice cream or have their newly offered Snow Cones of many flavors! Their gift shop is open daily until 11 PM. A Kure Beach Fishing Pier Tee Shirt is a must for any one visiting Federal Point!! Browse the collection of photos hanging up showing their many fishing tournaments there each year like the King Mackerel tournament.

We are proud of the pier and their good work done each year by allowing several groups to sponsor charity fishing tournaments such as the upcoming Cape Fear Disabled Sportsman’s Fishing Tournament on May 11th of this year.

The following week will be the Step Up for Soldiers Fishing Tournament. The folks running the pier are the nicest around. Always smiling, always helpful.

You can find Kure Beach Fishing Pier at 100 K Ave. Kure Beach, NC 28449. They are on Facebook. Their webpage is www.kurebeachfishingpier.com and their phone number is (910) 458-5524, 24 hours a day.

When you visit, please thank them for being such an upstanding Business Member of Federal Point Historical Preservation Society! We wish the Kure Beach Fishing Pier and the staff a great 2017 season!!

 

Thank You – Towns of Carolina Beach & Kure Beach

August, 2016

Resolution:

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society would like to thank the towns of Carolina Beach and Kure Beach for their generous donations to be used for the operation of the Federal Point History Center which is a function of the Society. 

We appreciate their continued support of our mission to preserve, protect, and promote the rich history of the Federal Point area.

 
 
 
 

Big Daddy’s

Featured Business Member
May, 2016

“They’re Open for the Season”Big Daddy Caddy

by Tony Lem Phillips

We are very proud to salute Big Daddy’s of Kure Beach as this months Business Member. Not only does Big Daddy’s support the History Center, they also purchased an entire case of our Local Flavor Cookbooks.

Since 1970 Big Daddy’s has been a Southern tradition for people who enjoy great food, fun times and friends! Big Daddy’s offers only the best in seafood, steak, and traditional favorites cooked to order. You will find inside dining as well as roadside.

Big Daddy's #1Right across from Kure Beach Pier, they are conveniently located next to Dow Road which can whisk you right back to Carolina Beach or Wilmington. Shop their gift store while there and don’t forget that they have a fully licensed bar.

Please visit them soon and thank them for being loyal supporters of The Federal Point History Center. Pick up a Local Flavor Cookbook while you are there.

Address:
206 K Avenue, Kure Beach, NC 28449
Phone:(910) 458-8622
Hours: 12–8:30PM

http://www.bigdaddys-nc.com/