December Meeting – Christmas Potluck

Monday, December 17, 2018

6:30 pm – One Hour Early!

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, December 17, 2018 at 6:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.

The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its annual holiday potluck on Monday, December 17 at 6:30 pm.  This year we will be back at the History Center as it’s a lot easier for the hospitality committee. Please join us for food, fun and festivities.

Again this year Judge Jay Hockenbury and his wife Deborah, will have another trivia contest for us and a timely Christmas story.

John Golden will round out the evening with his wonderful Christmas sing-along.

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.

 

President’s Letter – December, 2018

By Elaine Henson

Once again, we are asking our members for help. This is a postcard of the Guilford Cottage.

It was a guest house operated by Mrs. S.R.Jordan and was “in the center of all social activities” according to the information on the back.

It was postmarked August 9, 1940, and was sent to Mr. Howard R. Fields in Glendale, California, from his mother.

She was inquiring about when he was coming home or if he had plans to stay and also implored him to write and let her know. She also asked him if the picture of the Guilford cottage meant anything to him. Perhaps the family had stayed there on a beach vacation in the past.

Do any of you remember this cottage and where it was located? Did you know Mrs. S.R.Jordan? I seem to recall reading about a Dr.S.R.Jordan who had a medical practice at Carolina Beach, but can’t remember where I read it.

If you have any information, please call the History Center at 910-458-0502.

 

History of Surfing in North Carolina

By Nancy Gadzuk

Ben Wunderly, museum curator at the North Carolina Maritime Museum in Beaufort and co-collaborator with John Hairr on the Surfing NC Project, spoke at the October 15, 2018 meeting of the Federal Point Historical Preservation Society. Ben spoke on the History of Surfing in North Carolina.

While the title slide of Ben’s talk featured a 1966 photographic image, surfing in the state far predated the 1960’s. Ben moved outside North Carolina and traced the earliest recorded awareness of the sport to the late 1700’s. Captain James Cook’s expeditions to the Pacific reported Tahitians riding the waves on a board they described as “the stern of an old canoe.”

By the late 1800’s, awareness of surfing in the Pacific had spread to the East Coast. A “surfing party” was held at the Atlantic Hotel in Morehead City in 1885. A Watauga County man wrote about an excursion he took to Wrightsville Beach in 1894, where “All sorts and sizes were riding the waves during the entire day.”

After the turn of the century, reports of surfing in North Carolina became more widespread. A 1907 postcard from Wrightsville Beach appeared to show surfers in the water, though an ancient precursor to Photoshop may have been used to doctor the photo.

The earliest well-documented surfing activity in North Carolina was Virginia Dare Day in 1928, which featured surfing demonstrations by NC surfing pioneer Willie Kaiama.

By the 1950’s and 1960’s, surfing in North Carolina had spread – even inland to the original Bert’s Surf Shop in Kinston. Given the lack of beaches in Kinston, Bert had to sell clothes and shoes along with surfboards before opening a series of surf shops along the coast.

In 1964, Harold Petty and Lank Lancaster founded East Coast Surfboards in Carolina Beach, shaping their own brand of surfboards. In 1965, the Atlantic Surf Shop opened in Kure Beach, despite the town leaders banning surfing that summer due to complaints from fishermen who blamed the surfers for their bad luck. The Spring Surf Festival was held at Lumina in Wrightsville Beach in 1966.

By 1974, the North Carolina coast was recognized for having the best surfing on the East Coast, and the United States Surfing Championship was held in Buxton, the first time since the competition started that it was held on the East Coast. In 1997, the East Coast Wahine Championship of Surfing was established at Wrightsville Beach.

Due to time constraints, Ben was not able to talk in much detail about more recent history in this presentation. However, the Surfing NC Project included the development of Surfing NC: A Timeline of the History of the Sport of Surfing in North Carolina, a book Ben co-authored with John Hairr.

PDF copies of the book are available for free download from the Maritime Museum website:

https://ncmaritimemuseumbeaufort.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/North-Carolina-Surfing-NC-Timeline-2nd-Edition-HAIRR-WUNDERLY.pdf    [PDF]

What struck me most was the amount of work involved to ferret out the history presented during the evening, and in much greater detail in the book. When our focus is on war or politics or other more institutionalized subjects, there are often good written records to follow.

Surfing, however is more informal, with its proponents generally more interested in finding the next good wave than chronicling their activities in writing. Fortunately, Wunderly and Hairr have done much of that hard work and provided a fascinating history of the sport in North Carolina.

 

Federal Point Fishing Piers

 Kure Pier 1923-present

Kure Pier 1923 – present

By Rebecca Taylor

We’ve had quite a few questions about fishing piers lately.

With the help of Elaine Henson, and her Carolina Beach: A Postcard History and Al Baird and his new book: North Carolina’s Ocean Fishing Piers here’s a list.

1915 – ? – Carolina Beach Pier Company.
Built by W.E. Yopp, J.C. Herring, A.W. Pate and J.J. Loughlin.

Evening Dispatch June 8, 1915:
“The preliminary work for which is now under way, a 600 foot fishing pier extending out from a 30 room club house to and beyond the famous old blockade runner Beauregard wreck 500 yards south of Carolina Beach pavilion, will be built, the work to be completed before August 1.”

1923-present. Kure Pier
Built by L. C. Kure. The first pier was 22 feet wide and 120 feet long. Rebuilt in 1924 at 32 feet wide and 240 feet long. Daily: 35 cents, Season: $10.00. Current length: 711 feet. Oldest continually operating pier in NC.

Fort Fisher Fishing Pier 1936-1954.

Fort Fisher Fishing Pier
1936-1954.

1936-1954. Fort Fisher Fishing Pier (right)
Land owned by Orrell brothers Louis and Thomas. Constructed by Walter Winner. Destroyed by Hurricane Hazel in 1954.

 

1947-present. Carolina Beach Fishing Pier.
(aka North Pier) Owners; the Phelps Family.

 

 

 

1954-1996. Center Fishing Pier.
Walter Winner built for J.C. Bame. Owned by Herring Family from the 1960’s on. Destroyed by Hurricanes Bertha and Fran 1996.  Today, the pier remnants are the Golden Sands’ Tiki Bar.

 

 

Fisherman’s Steel Pier 1956-1977

Fisherman’s Steel Pier 1956-1977

1956-1977. Fisherman’s Steel Pier (left)
L
ocated at Carolina Beach Boardwalk. Built by JR. Bame and J.C. Bame, later joined by R. C. Fergus. Run by McGirt Family from 1960’s to 1970’s.

The pier with the famous “Skyliner” chair lift.

 

 

Snow’s Cut Bridge – From the Bill Reaves Files

snows_cut-steelJuly 4, 1929
Bids for construction of a temporary bridge over the Inland Waterway, at the point were it crosses the Carolina Beach highway, at an estimated cost of $10,000 was asked for and was to be opened in the office of the Wilmington District engineer.The temporary span would be constructed for traffic over the 75-foot ditch. It was announced also that bid for a permanent bridge over the canal at this point, were asked for and the bids were to be opened by the district engineer of July 25th. This structure was to cost approx. $100,000. Wilm Star, 7-4-1929

December 14, 1929
Bids for the erection of a steel bridge on the Carolina Beach highway at the point of intersection of the Intra-Coastal Waterway, now under construction, were to be opened today in the Wilmington office of the North Carolina District of Army Engineers. This was the second time that bids had been received. The first were rejected because of high estimates. The span will be approx. 225 feet in length and was to be one of two types of draw bridges. It was not know yet when work on the span would start. Wilm Star, 12-14-1929

January 20, 1930
Construction of the temporary wooden bridge at the intersection of the Carolina Beach road with section five of the Beaufort-Cape Fear inland waterway system was scheduled to begin in the near future. Detour approaches and embankments had already been constructed. The temporary span was to be used for 11 months or so. The wooden bridge was to be built on the river side of the beach highway. Wilm News, 1-20-1930

March 9, 1930
Rapid progress on the dredging of Section Five of the Intracoastal Waterway canal had brought earlier use than expected for the temporary wooden bridge across the waterway on the Carolina Beach Road. The temporary bridge was not entirely completed but the structure was deemed safe for traffic. The early traffic was due to crowds of people wanting to view the progress of the dredging, and they crossed and re-crossed the bridge. The temporary bridge was built about 200 yards north of the main highway bridge. The highway was severed by the dredge before the wooden bridge was completed and forces had to speed up for the opening. So many spectators came by automobile to see the progress of the dredge that traffic at one time was almost an unbroken line of cars from the city to the beach. Wilm Star, 3-10-1930

March 27, 1930
Secretary of War in Washington allotted $135,000 for construction work on the Inland Waterway from Beaufort to Cape Fear River. According to the Wilmington office of the U.S. Army engineer, this money was to be used in the construction of a permanent bridge across the waterway on the Wilmington-Carolina Beach highway, as there was only a temporary structure at the crossing point on the highway at present. Bids for work on the bridge were opened some time ago, but the award of the contract was never made by the engineering department. In the meantime, money for the bridge had been spent on dredging work, on section 4 of the waterway. This allotment was thus made by the Secretary of War for the erection of the bridge. Wilm Star, 3-28-1930

April 4, 1930
The connection of the Cape Fear River with Myrtle Grove Sound, by way of the Inland Waterway, was completed when the dredge of the Atlantic, Gulf and Pacific Company, working on Section Five of the Waterway, cut through to the sound. Reaching the sound brings near completion of the work on Section Five, which was halted for some time by the failure of the company to which the contract was originally awarded. Wilm Star, 4-5-1930

snows_cut_1964November 25, 1930
Construction of the $110,000 draw-bridge over the Inland Waterway near Carolina Beach on Route No. 40, was begun by the Roanoke Iron and Bridge Works, of Roanoke, Va. A small group of workmen began the building operations.
A center pier was to be set in place within the next few days. The span was to be completed before the 1931 season at the beach. The contract was let over a year earlier by government officials but on account of various changes in the plans work had been delayed until today. Local labor was to be used where possible.
Wilm Star, 11-26-1930; Wilm News, 11-13-1930;11-20-1930;11-25-1930 6-5-1930;11-13-1930;1-20-1931;3-12-1931

April 6, 1931
The Wilmington District Engineers reported that the draw bridge spanning the Inland Waterway canal would probably be open for traffic by July 1st. The bridge was to have an 80-foot draw and a clearance of 20 feet when closed. The span will be in constant use when completed due to the many small vessels using the waterway canal. At present a wooden bridge is being used. Wilm Star, 4-6-1931; Wilm News, 6-15-1931; Wilm News, 8-15-1930

October 22, 1931
The temporary wooden bridge over the Inland Waterway on the Carolina Beach Road was burned yesterday at the command of the district army engineer’s office. Oil soaked waste was used in starting the blaze. After the draw burned through and fell into the canal, all the wreckage was removed. Wilm News, 10-23-1931

April 22, 1947
The Snow’s Cut bridge was thrown out of business by a broken shaft, which jammed a gear. D . W. Stewart, operator of the bridge, said that the damages would not interfere with inland waterway traffic, and a new bridge shaft would soon be installed. Wilm News, 4-23-1947

November 11, 1961
Pillars to support the new fixed span bridge across the Inland Waterway near Carolina Beach were in place. The bridge was not a “high-level” bridge, but was high enough to permit passage of boats using the waterway and would eliminate most of the congestion caused by pile-up of autos held up by the draw. THE STATE magazine, 11- 11-1961

maj_william_snow