January Meeting: Jamie Martinez Speaks on Conscripts who Built Fort Fisher

January Meeting
Monday, January 20, 2020
7:30 PM

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

Dr. Jamie Martinez will speak about the impressment of privately owned slaves and Native Americans to work on the building of Fort Fisher. Under policies instituted by the Confederacy, white Virginians and North Carolinians, surrendered control over portions of their slave populations to state authorities, military officials, and the national government to defend their new nation.

State and local officials cooperated with the Confederate War Department and Engineer Bureau, as well as individual generals, to ensure a supply of slave labor on fortifications.

Dr. Jamie Martinez is an Associate Professor of History at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, where she teaches classes on the US Civil War, Antebellum America, African American History, Historical Methods, and general US History. Her research focuses on the Civil War.

Her first book, Confederate Slave Impressment in the Upper South, was published in 2013. She also coordinates an event series called Perspectives on the Civil War Era, typically, hosting one guest speaker each year, plus other programs like concerts and presentations featuring students and faculty.

When she’s not busy in the History Department, she likes to head over to the Music Department to sing in the choir and sometimes plays recorder with the Early Musick Ensemble. She also sings, plays handbells, and directs the children’s music program at her church.

 

President’s Letter – January, 2020

Kure Beach – K Avenue Business District c. 1947-1953

By Elaine Henson

In 1937, Andrew Emile Kure, Sr. sold 40 acres of his land to the Dow Plant off what is now Dow Road. With part of the proceeds he bought a 1938 Chevrolet specially ordered with a heater and a radio, neither of which came with the car in those days.  His new Chevy was black, the only color available at that time. After the car purchase, he built two houses and a garage apartment facing K Avenue west of the pier.  Each cost $500 to build and $500 to furnish.

In the photograph above, the house with the black roof (3) was where his family lived. There was a living room and kitchen on the right with a bathroom behind the kitchen.  There were two bedrooms on the left and a back porch behind them which was converted into a bedroom for Mary Rose who lived in to look after his wife, Betty Kure, who had heart trouble. Mary was descended from slaves at Orton Plantation.  Her husband, Johnny Rose, built both houses and the garage apartment.  Mary’s little daughter, Shirley, was born while she was caring for Betty and shared the room with her mother.  Betty, dressed in her gown and robe, would walk across the street holding toddler Shirley’s hand to go to the Post Office.  It was located between where the Arcade and Jack Mackerels are now.

Johnny Rose lived in town and would come on the weekends and sometimes weekdays. He was later in a serious brawl and lost his life.  Their son, Emile Rose, is a retired longshoreman at Sunny Point. Andrew Emile Kure, Jr. better known as Punky, saw Emile about a year ago.  Both men noted that they shared the same name and surmised that the Roses named him for the senior and junior A. E. Kures.

The second house was built with the same floor plan as the Kure home, but with an open front porch (4). It was used as a rental home.  Behind that was the garage apartment (7). The downstairs had an efficiency apartment with bedroom, kitchen and living space.  The upstairs had a kitchen/living room, bath, bedroom and a glassed-in front porch.  Punky and Jean Kure  lived there after they were married in 1952.  They put in an oil heater and water heater.  During Hurricane Hazel in October of 1954, there were whitecaps in the apartment’s bathtub.  The storm surge was 17-18 feet.

Next to the rental house were two long buildings, most likely former barracks from Fort Fisher, that remain to this day. The first one (5) had John Flower’s Barber Shop in the back with Clarence Danner’s Fish Market in the front.  Since 1972, it has been Bud and Joe’s Sandbar.

The second one (6) had an ABC Store in the front from 1949 to the mid-1960s and Kure Beach Town Hall in the back. East of those two buildings was the two-story white frame Ocean Inn (8) which had been moved there from its original location across the street after the Great Storm of 1944.

In 1947, Andrew Emile Kure, Sr. built a service station/café on the corner of K Avenue and Fort Fisher Boulevard (1).  Punky Kure ran the station for two years which was on the left end of the building. The Café was on the right end. There was a garage (2) built at an angle to the service station.  It was used for lubes and washing cars.

East of the station, garage, houses, barracks buildings and Ocean Inn were two rows of little guest houses (13) built by Fred Futch. He and Mrs. Futch also had a home among guest houses.  Fred was an Air Raid Warden during WWII and was killed during a black out when a car ran over him.

At the end of K Avenue was the iconic Kure Pier (9) which was built in 1923 by Lawrence Kure, A.E. Kure, Sr.’s brother.  He also served as the first mayor of Kure Beach when it was incorporated in 1947. Across the street was the Smitty’s building (10).  Smitty’s was a restaurant that specialized in seafood, no surprise there. On the end of that building near the pier was Taft Russ’ Tackle Shop.

Number 11 shows three little one story buildings.  The one on the left was the 400 sq. ft. post office.  The next was Fry’s Fundy Café and the third was a small grocery store run by Linwood Flowers at the time.

Building #12 was the Plaza Grill, owned and operated by George & Lola Canoutas.  The Plaza Grill had a restaurant on the end near Fort Fisher Boulevard, which also served as a bus stop for school children and Trailways/City buses. The building also had a Bingo Hall and at Beauty Shop on the main floor with apartments and rooms to rent on the second floor. Their son, Andy Canoutas, is the attorney for the Town of Kure Beach and has held that post for many years.

 

Fort Fisher to Commemorate 155th Anniversary with Battle Scenarios, more

Tactical battle scenarios will highlight the 155th commemoration of the 2nd battle of Fort Fisher Saturday and Sunday, January 18-19, 2020. The two-day program is free and open to the public.

KURE BEACH, NC—Fort Fisher State Historic Site will commemorate the 155th anniversary of the second battle of Fort Fisher with the program, ‘Glory Enough for All’, Saturday and Sunday, January 18-19, 2020, from 10 am-4 pm in Kure Beach.

Free and open to the public, the two-day program will feature a tactical battle scenario each day, (beginning at 1 pm Saturday and 10 am Sunday), with hundreds of reenactors, living history demonstrations, musket demonstrations, artillery firings, guided tours, 19th century wet plate photography, and special guest speakers and authors throughout the day.

Due to parking and travel constraints and the temporary closing of the NC DOT Southport-Fort Fisher ferry route, site officials strongly encourage visitors to arrive early. Free public parking will be provided at the Fort Fisher Air Force Recreation Area, one-half mile north of the historic site. A limited trolley service from there is planned. Food will be available for purchase at the event. All program elements are subject to change depending on weather conditions.

All Fort Fisher programming is made possible through the generous support of the Friends of Fort Fisher, its sustaining members, New Hanover County, the town of Carolina Beach, and the town of Kure Beach. Fort Fisher State Historic Site is located at 1610 Fort Fisher Blvd S, Kure Beach, N.C. 28449.

The site is part of the Division of State Historic Sites in the N.C. Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NCDNCR), the State agency with a vision to be the leader in using the State’s natural and cultural resources to build the social, cultural, educational and economic future of North Carolina.

Led by Secretary, Susi H. Hamilton, NCDNCR’s mission is to improve the quality of life in our state by creating opportunities to experience excellence in the arts, history, libraries and nature in North Carolina by stimulating learning, inspiring creativity, preserving the State’s history, conserving the State’s natural heritage, encouraging recreation and cultural tourism, and promoting economic development.

NCDNCR includes 27 historic sites, seven history museums, two art museums, two science museums, three aquariums and Jennette’s Pier, 39 State parks and recreation areas, the N.C. Zoo, the nation’s first state-supported Symphony Orchestra, the State Library, the State Archives, the N.C. Arts Council, State Preservation Office and the Office of State Archaeology, along with the Division of Land and Water Stewardship.

For more information, please call (919) 807-7300.

 

Society Notes – January 2020

ANNUAL FUNDRAISER!

Again This year, FPHPS will sell Hot dogs, BBQ, drinks,  snacks and sweets at the Fort Fisher Reenactment on Saturday January 18, 2020 & Sunday January 19, 2020.

We need volunteers to help with the sale Saturday and Sunday from 9 am (to set up) until around 4 pm (or until we run out of food).  If you can give us a few hours on either or both days, please call the History Center at 910-458-0502 and let us know when you can be there!

 We also need people to bake sweets and bring them to the History Center on Friday January 18. Please bag them in small ziplocks – we sell each bag for $1.00 a bag; so, 2-4 cookies per bag depending on size.

 


Society Notes

By Darlene Bright, History Center Director 

  • The History Center recorded 45 visitors in December. There were 50 people at the Christmas Potluck.
  • The History Center was used by the Got-Em-On Live Bait Club and the UDC.
  • Welcome to new members Don and Bee Anthony of Kure Beach and Mary Cameron of Kure Beach.