News Articles – 1899

Federal Point, Carolina Beach, Kure Beach and Fort Fisher
– from the Wilmington Star, Wilmington News, Wilmington Post, Wilmington Dispatch, Wilmington Messenger

Bill Reaves files: Federal Point/Carolina Beach/Kure Beach/Fort Fisher 1725-1994


January 8, 1899
(advertisement) The Nolan Cottage at Carolina Beach was offered for sale or rent. The cottage was located on one acre of land.   (Star, 1-8-1899)


January 20, 1899
(advertisement) The hotel at Carolina Beach was offered for sale, or it can be leased for a term of years.  (Star, 1-20-1899)


March 8, 1899
Captain John W. Harper had begun to put Carolina Beach in order for the coming season. The waterworks at the beach was being rebuilt and enlarged. A huge water tank to hold 18,000 gallons of water, was now being made by the Fore & Foster Company, Wilmington, and the frame for it had already been erected at the beach. The tank will be higher than the old one and will give sufficient force to throw a stream of water to the top of the hotel or any of the two-story club houses or cottages in case of fire. Pipes run up and down the beach to the various cottages and club houses, and they are thus supplied with water. The water at the beach was of very superior quality and the new tank will make it all the better.  (Messenger, 3-8-1899)


April 13, 1899
The annual meeting of Sedgeley Hall Club, of Carolina Beach, was held in the City Hall in Wilmington. Mr. James W. Reilly was called to the chair to preside. Annual reports were read, received and approved, and the election of officers for the ensuing year was held: Wm. A. French, Jr. was president; James H. Cowen was vice-president; Wm. A. Wllson, Jr. was secretary and treasurer. The Executive Committee included D. O’Connor, James F. Post Jr., and DeWitt C. Love.  (Messenger, 4-14-1899)


May 26, 1899
Mr. Thad Tyler, who had the contract for moving the Hotel Oceanic at Carolina Beach, moved the building back about 15 feet from its former location. This was made necessary on account of the constant encroachment of the tide.

The hotel was moved back on a line parallel with the cottages connected with the hotel and it and the cottages are to be connected with piazzas. The hotel building is to be generally overhauled and the hotel is to have piazzas, both on the first and second stories, fronting on the ocean.

Colonel R.A. Jenkins, the lessee of the hotel, expected to open for the season on June 1st. Mr. R .J. Lewis, the well-known caterer, is to be with him during the season.  (Messenger, 5-26-1899)


May 30, 1899
The formal opening of the Sedgeley Hall Club of Carolina Beach was a great success. Over 200 people were in attendance. The dance was the chief feature of the opening, and the ball room floor was alive the entire time. The guests of honor were a number of officers of the Naval Brigade, who attended in full regalia. The club of Wrightsville Beach and Hanover Seaside Club sent a large delegation.  (Messenger, 5-30-1899; 5-31-1899; 5-14-1899; 5-17-1899)


June 3, 1899
Colonel R.A. Jenkins, of Winston Salem, who had been the lessee of the Hotel Oceanic at Carolina Beach for the past three or four seasons, and a syndicate of several Winston gentlemen, have purchased the hotel from the New Hanover Transit Company.

Col. Jenkins will be the manager and will be assisted by his sons, Messrs. R.L. Jenkins and G.F. Jenkins. Col. Jenkins opened the hotel for the season recently and already has several guests who will spend the season at the beach. His caterer is Mr. R.G. Lewis, who was an artist in providing good things to gratify the appetite.

The ocean has been eating its way further inland every year at the rate of 15 inches a year. Since the hotel was built the ocean has encroached on it for a distance of 15 feet or more, and it became necessary to move the hotel further back on the beach. The removal was successfully accomplished by Mr. Thad Tyler, who set it back 40 feet from its former location. It is now on a line with the cottages. It is estimated that at the present rate, it will take the ocean another 20 years to get to the hotel in its present location.

Several rooms had been added to the hotel, giving now 42 rooms. Col. Jenkins plans to enlarge the hotel again next season by the additional an “L.” With this addition the hotel will then contain 70 or 80 rooms. The apartments in the “L” will be handsomely carpeted and furnished, as they will be further back from the ocean front where it was not so damp as to injure the furnishings.   (Messenger, 6-3-1899)


June 9, 1899
The best boat schedule ever run to Carolina Beach was to go into effect. Capt. John W. Harper, general manager, announced the new schedule that the steamers WILMINGTON and SOUTHPORT were to run. There were to be five daily trips to Carolina Beach and three daily trips to Southport.

The fare for the round trip was to be 15 cents. The crew of the steamer WILMINGTON included Capt. Harper, Mr. George Warren as his mate, Mr. R.C. Banks would be purser, and Mr. Phillip Platt engineer. The crew of the SOUTHPORT was to be Capt. Peter Jorgensen, Mr. Tom Taylor, mate, and Mr. Tom Platt, engineer.  (Semi-Weely Messenger, 6-9-1899)


June 12, 1899
Colonel W.A. Johnson was elected president of the Sedgeley Hall Club, of Carolina Beach, in place of Mr. W.A. French, Jr., who resigned on account of lack of time to fulfill the duties of the office. Sedgeley Hall Club was now on a boom, and the management intended to keep her booming. Several dances were on taps, as well as a big Fourth of July celebration.   (Messenger, 6-13-1899)


June 12, 1899
Miss Lucy McEachern, daughter of Mr. D. McEachern, fell from a boardwalk at Carolina Beach and broke her left wrist.  (Messenger, 6-13-1899)


June 16, 1899
Proprietor Jenkins, of the Oceanic Hotel of Carolina Beach, was predicting a great season. He had engaged a band for the entire season and there was to be dancing every night. There would be a special big dance once a week with an attractive feature and it was “to be all the go.” The first dance was on June 20th.  (Semi-Weekly Messenger, 6-16-1899)


June 30, l899
A Bicycle Meet took place at Carolina Beach. It included five races, and there was an exhibition of trick riding on the side. All the races were to either start or finish in front of the Oceanic Hotel. The first two races were to be championship races. One will be a mile, time limit 2:20 for the Hilton Park Medal, and the second was a quarter of a mile, time limit 32, for the Carolina Beach Medal.

For both races some of the swiftest of the swift entered. They were John E. Platt, James K. Forhsee. R.J. Sellers, Alfred Jewett, Vance Montgomery and J.H. LeGwin. W.B. Litgen had also entered for the quarter of a mile race.

Race No. 3 was to be a novice race, contested only by riders who had never raced before. The entries were J.J. Loughlin, Clarence K. Davis, Fred Russ, W.E. King, R.H. Orrell, J.L. King, and William Blake. The course will be half mile and the time limit 1:20.

The half a mile race open to cyclists who did not participate in the other races was to take place next. The time limit being 1:32. The entries were W.E. King, Willie Blake, J.G. Premport, J.A, Price, J.J. Loughlin, R.L. Sellers, George Philips and Fred Russ.

One of the most interesting incidences of the meet will be an “Old Ladies” race, in which Miss Belinda Pincushion and Miss Kittie Soapsuds would strive for supremacy. This was to be conducive to mirth, pure and simple and plenty of it.  An exhibition of trick riding was to be given by Mr. Arthur McDonald. The officers of the race were: J.M. Wright, starter; F.P. Turrentine, referee; A.P. Yopp, C.H. Berry and W.F. Morris, judges; Claude Fisher, Harry Helm and W.L. Jacobs, time keepers.  (Messenger, 6-30-1899)


July 2, 1899
Carolina Beach was on a veritable boom. The applications for cottages were more numerous this season than any other season in the history of the resort. Every cottage on the beach was occupied, and there were applications for cottages daily.

Forty-one Wilmington families were occupying cottages and among the cottagers form other cities were Mr. H.C. Irwin and family, Mrs. F.D. Alexander, Charlotte, N.C.; Mr. Hunter and family, Jonesboro; Mr. J.T. Goodwin and family, and Miss Nettle Chesnutt, Clinton; Miss Allie Bundy, Laurinburg; Mr. W.N. Saunders, Smithfield; M Walter Watson and family, Fayetteville; Mr. W.A. Robeson, Mr. W.B. Burney and family, Columbia, S.C.

Besides the residents and cottagers, the hotel and boarding houses are crowded with guests. Recently there were delightful dances at the Hanover Seaside and Sedgley Hall Clubs. The number of visitors and pleasure seekers has been the largest since the beach was opened.  (Messenger, 7-2-1899)


July 7, 1899
The Second Regiment Band rendered one of its superb concerts, and then a big dance followed at the Oceanic Hotel. The band gave its concert in the evening after supper. The dance later was a decidedly enjoyable affair.  (Messenger, 7-7-1899)


July 12-13, 1899
The North Carolina Press Association held its annual convention at Carolina Beach. It convened at the Sedgeley Hall Club House and was called to order by the president, Editor W.C. Dowd, of the The Charlotte News.

Mayor A.M. Weddell, of Wilmington, delivered the welcome address on part of the citizens of Wilmington. By courtesy of Capt. John W. Harper, general manager of the Hanover Transit Company, the editors were at liberty to go back and forth on the steamer WILMINGTON free of charge. Mr. Sol Bear, with his customary courtesy, had sent the association a case of claret to cheer them in their work.

During the afternoon and evening the Hanover Seaside Club gave a complimentary ball to the Press Association at its splendid club house at the beach.  (Messenger, 7-12-1899)


July 20, 1899
Sedgeley Hall Club gave a concert and dance and the members of all the other clubs, Atlantic, Carolina and Hanover Seaside were invited. The Second Regiment band provided the concert early in the evening, and the Seashore Hotel Orchestra furnished music for dancing later in the evening. All passengers on the 5:15 and 7:30 p.m. boats were also invited to attend.  (Messenger, 7-19-1899)


July 28, 1899
Captain John W. Harper had made arrangements to have a performance by Phillips’ Genuine Negro Minstrels at the pavilion at Carolina Beach. The performance was to be given specially for the entertainment of the people and visitors at the beach. Phillips’ Minstrels belong in Wilmington and had given several excellent performances at the Wilmington Opera House. They were noted for their clean performances, and ladies and children could attend with the greatest propriety.   (Messenger, 7-26-1899)


August, 1899
A West Indian storm or hurricane struck Carolina Beach. Large numbers of the cottagers and guests at the hotels came up to the city to spend the night. Winds of 65 miles per hour were reported at the beach. Capt. Harper anchored the steamer WILMINGTON at the river pier at Carolina Beach ready to take the remaining residents of the beach on board and bring them to the city should the storm conditions become severe enough to drive them from the beach for refuge.

The tide on the Carolina Beach was the highest that had been known in many years. The breakers swept over the beach to the sound at both the Sedgeley Hall and Hanover Seaside Club houses, as well as the intervening beach. At the hotel the surf also washed up quite high, reaching the steps and throwing spray on the porches. There were forty cottages above the hotel and the surf flowed between them all, breakers actually rolling up on the porches in several instances and washing into cottage hallways. Damages at Carolina Beach were reported as minor following the storm.  (Star, 8-18-1899)


August 12, 1899
The First Battalion of the Boys’ Brigade, of Wilmington, were camping at Carolina Beach. They called their camp “Camp Kenan.”

On August 14th the principal amusements were target practice and baseball. The first target was a porpoise. Later a dress parade was held in front of the hotel. After supper there was target practice, with a U.S. Springfield rifle and regulation targets. Each man had three shots each. Capt. Loughlin, Sgt. Price and Sgt. Parker made the best shots.  (Dispatch, 8-14-1899)


August 20, 1899
Carolina Beach cottagers were treated to a fine sight in the shape of an immense school of porpoises. There seemed to be several hundred of them, and they came within an eighth of a mile of the shore.  (Dispatch, 8-21-1899)


August 20, 1899
Captain Ed Wilson Manning, county superintendent of schools, took a trip to Carolina Beach and duly organized a school committee there, which was to come under the scope of District No. 9 of Federal Point Township. The committee elected Mr. Thomas H. McGee, chairman, and Mr. Marion Winner secretary. The third member was Mr. Edward W. Davis. There was only one school in the district, a colored one, and the committee selected a young colored woman as teacher.  (Messenger, 8-23-1899)


September 16, 1899
The season at Carolina Beach closed, and Captain John W. Harper, of the steamer WILMINGTON and general manager of the Hanover Transit Company, proclaimed the past season as the most successful in the history of the popular resort. During the season the steamer WILMINGTON had carried 42,000 people to the beach. It was also learned that for the next season the hotel was to be more than doubled in size.  (Messenger, 9-19-1899)


September 21, 1899
The stone dam (Rocks) between Zeke’s Island and the Big Marsh was damaged by the recent hurricane. The force of the waves knocked the coping to the dam down in several places. Allen Clemmons with a small force of eight men had been at work the past week, putting the rocks back in place.   (Messenger, 9-22-1899)


November 3, 1899
A largely attended meeting of the stockholders of the New Hanover Transit Company was held in the office of Mr. H.C. McQueen, in the Murchison National Bank. A committee was appointed to ascertain the extent of the damage done to the railroad track on Carolina Beach and proceed at once to put the road all the way from the pier to the terminal above Sedgeley Hall Club house in thorough repair. The Company was determined to have the railroad line in thorough order by the early spring.   (Messenger, 11-4-1899)


November 15, 1899
Mr. Walter Smallbones had commenced the work of rebuilding his cottage, which was destroyed on Carolina Beach during the recent terrible storm. Mr. Smallbones was the first cottage owner to begin rebuilding.   (Messenger, 11-16-1899)


November 28, 1899
Capt. E.W. Manning, county supt. of education, had at last secured a teacher for the white school in Federal Point Township, School District No. 8. Miss Lucy Smith is the young lady who will teach the school. She was a graduate of the State Normal School and had experience in teaching. She was from the town of Leon, Duplin County. The school, which had not yet been opened this season, would now open at once.  (Messenger, 11-28-1899; Dispatch, 11-27-1899)


Bill Reaves files: Federal Point/Carolina Beach/Kure Beach/Fort Fisher 1725-1994