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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
 
 

Brunswick County North Carolina Historical Markers

 
Obverse side view looking out to shoals image, Touch for more information
By Charles Keller, March 29, 2018
Obverse side view looking out to shoals
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Cape Fear and Frying Pan Shoals
An underwater labyrinth of sandbars stretches for 20 miles into the Atlantic Ocean, varying in depth from 3 to 15 feet, causing frequent shipwrecks. One of North Carolina's three great capes, collectively known as the Graveyard of the Atlantic, . . . — Map (db m115691) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Cape Fear Lighthouse Foundation 1903–1958
The Cape Fear Lighthouse stood here until it was deactivated and replaced by the Oak Island lighthouse across the mouth of the river. The wrought iron and steel frame of the tower stood 150 feet high and its flashing lens was capable of reaching an . . . — Map (db m115767) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Captain Charlie’s StationNamed for Charles Swan
These four dwellings were provided by the government for the keepers of the Cape Fear Lighthouse and their families. Captain Charles Swan, the first keeper of the light, lived with his family and staff in these homes from 1903 until 1933. The . . . — Map (db m115702) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Confederate Blockade Runner Ella
Union ships chase the blockade runner Ella ashore on Bald Head Island as she tried to enter Old Inlet on December 3, 1864. Over the following two days, Confederate soldiers from Fort Holmes salvaged goods from the derelict vessel before she . . . — Map (db m115686) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Fort Holmes, 1863-1865 Batteries No. 1 and No. 2
A rectangular sand bastion, Battery No. 2 mounted a 100-pounder Brooke Cannon and was located about 200 yards east. The site of circular-shaped Battery No. 1 with its 10-inch Columbiad cannon is about a 100 yards to the west. It sat upon the south . . . — Map (db m115728) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Fort Holmes, 1863-1865 Battery Holmes
Fort Holmes’s largest earthen battery was built on the southwestern elbow of Bald Head Island to guard Old Inlet for blockade running ships. Its seacoast cannon provided cross-fire with Fort Caswell on Oak Island. Erosion claimed Battery Holmes by . . . — Map (db m115743) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Fort Holmes, 1863-1865 Battery No. 4
Battery No. 4 highlights what remains of Fort Holmes. This crescent-shaped sand bastion mounted two 24-pounder and two 32-pounder cannon to guard against an enemy attack from the direction of East Beach and Bald Head Creek. The battery and a large . . . — Map (db m115759) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Fort Holmes, 1863-1865 Encampment Site
In this area stood the main base camp for Fort Holmes’s garrison troops, and the headquarters of Colonel John J. Hedrick, 40th Regiment NC Troops. The barracks and storehouses were made largely of red cedar lumber and shingles, hewed from Bald Head . . . — Map (db m115745) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Generator HouseBuilt 1903
This brick structure was built to house the generator for the Cape Fear Lighthouse. A slate roof covers brick walls that are approximately 10-1/2 inches thick. — Map (db m115696) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Guarding the Confederacy LifelineWhy Put a Fort on Bald Head?
Wilmington, North Carolina was the Confederacy's most important Seaport during the Civil War. By 1864, it was the last Atlantic Port open to trade with the outside world. General Robert E. Lee said: “If Wilmington falls, I cannot maintain . . . — Map (db m115783) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Revolutionary War Fort
British troops constructed Fort George to defend Bald Head Island and their warships’ anchorage at the mouth of the Cape Fear River. American forces attacked the fort, but were repulsed, in early September 1776. This was believed to be the first . . . — Map (db m115744) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bald Head Island — Union Blockading Ship U.S.S. Peterhoff
U.S.S. Peterhoff served on the Union blockade of the Cape Fear until it was accidentally run into and sunk by the U.S.S. Monticello on March 7, 1864 off bald Head Island’s East Beach. The Peterhoff’s remains are located about . . . — Map (db m115693) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — D-25 — Alfred Moore
Associate Justice United States Supreme Court, 1799–1804, officer in the Revolution, state Attorney General, Judge. Home was 18¾ mi. S. — Map (db m6419) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — D 85 — Benjamin Smith1756-1826
Governor, 1810-1811, legislator, soldier, benefactor of UNC. His plantation, “Belvedere,” was 6 miles northeast. — Map (db m39650) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — DDD-2 — Fort Anderson
Large Confederate fort stands 13 mi. S. After a strong Union attack it was evacuated Feb. 18, 1865, resulting in the fall of Wilmington. — Map (db m6437) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — D-3 — Orton
Fine colonial home. Built about 1725 by Roger Moore. Later Gov. Benjamin Smith’s home. Stands 16¾ mi. south. — Map (db m6435) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — D-24 — Robert Howe
Major General in the Revolution, commander of the American Army in the South., 1776–78. His home stood 17 miles S. — Map (db m6320) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Belville — D-4 — Stamp Act
Resisted by armed band, Feb., 1766, at Brunswick, where royal governor Tryon lived. Site 18¾ mi. south. — Map (db m6410) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Bolivia — Brunswick County War Veterans Memorial
Dedicated to the men and women who served and died in the Armed Forces of the United States Erected 1982 by the people of Brunswick County — Map (db m98941) WM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Brunswick Town State Historic Site — Russelborough
Erected by Captain John Russell, Commander of His Britannic Majesty's Sloop of War Scorpion, who gave his name to this residence and tract of fifty-five acres of land adjacent to the town of Brunswick. Subsequently owned and occupied by the British . . . — Map (db m22372) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Brunswick Town State Historic Site — D 82 — Russellborough
Home of royal governors Dobbs and Tryon. Site of Stamp Act resistance in 1765. Burned in American Revolution. — Map (db m22197) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Calabash — D-79 — Boundary House
Commissioners met here to run boundary in 1764. Popular stop for colonial travelers. Ruins used to establish present state line in 1928. Located 2¾ mi. S.E. — Map (db m5375) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Calabash — D-30 — First Post Road
The road from New England to Charleston, over which mail was first carried regularly in North Carolina, 1738–39, passed near this spot. — Map (db m6317) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Carolina Shores — D 29 — South Carolina / North Carolina
South Carolina Formed in 1712 from part of Carolina, which was chartered in 1663, it was first settled by the English in 1670. One of the 13 original states. North Carolina Colonized, 1585-87, b first English settlers in America; . . . — Map (db m39649) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Oak Island — D-62 — Fort Caswell
Seized by N.C. Militia three months before firing on Fort Sumter. Governor Ellis ordered its return to Federal Authority; three miles east. — Map (db m5834) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Oak Island — D-109 — Hurricane Hazel
Category 4 storm made landfall at Long Beach, October 15, 1954, with winds over 140 mph & 17-foot surge. Nineteen people killed in N.C. — Map (db m5832) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Old Town — D-48 — Charles Town
Center of a colony from Barbados led by John Vassall, 1664. Abandoned by 1667. Was located 2 miles east on Town Creek. — Map (db m101439) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Shallotte — Shallotte
Established late 1700’s. Incorporated March6, 1899. The Shallotte River was navigated by commercial sailing vessels until the 1920’s when the roads were built. First church building erected on this site circa 1799. — Map (db m28823) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Shallotte — D-70 — Washington’s Southern Tour
President Washington, on April 27, 1791, was a guest at the home of William Gause, Jr., which stood four miles north. — Map (db m16277) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Smithville — D-14 — Arthur Dobbs1689–1765
Royal Governor 1754–65. Scholar, engineer, and member of Irish Parliament. Promoted immigration to colony. Grave 2 miles south. — Map (db m6436) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Smithville — D-54 — Brunswick
Founded c. 1725, long a principal port of N.C., site of Spanish attack, 1748, and of Stamp Act resistance, 1766. Later abandoned. Was 2 mi. S.E. — Map (db m6451) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Smithville — D-16 — Spanish Attack
A Spanish expedition captured the town of Brunswick, 1748, during King George’s War, but was soon driven away by the colonial militia. — Map (db m6420) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — (Map of the First 100 Lots)
Here on this small bluff overlooking the Cape Fear River, Joshua Potts in the year 1790 envisioned a town surrounding old Fort Johnston. “Braced up by the effects of the salubrious breeze, from the sea,” Joshua Potts laid out the first . . . — Map (db m4792) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-66 — Bald Head Lighthouse
Original lighthouse was erected in 1794. Present tower, “Old Baldy,” built in 1817. Used until 1935. Stands 3 miles south. — Map (db m101572) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Catalino Tingzon
Dedicated to the memory of Catalino Tingzon, interred in Northwood Cemetery, and all Merchant Marine seamen and U.S. Navy Armed Guard on the tanker S.S.John D. Gill torpedoed and sunk off Cape Fear by the German submarine U-158 . . . — Map (db m4950) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Deep Water Point 1812-1814Encampment Site
During the war of 1812, North Carolina Governor William Hawkins called up companies of militia from Brunswick, Bladen, New Hanover and Duplin counties for the coastal defense of the state against British invasion to serve at Fort Johnston in . . . — Map (db m115792) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-8 — Fort Caswell
Named for Gov. Caswell. Begun by U.S. in 1826; seized by N.C. troops, 1861; abandoned by Confederates, 1865. Stands five miles southeast. — Map (db m16331) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Fort Johnston
This tablet was erected May, 1911 by the North Carolina Society of Colonial Dames of America to mark the site of Fort Johnston, the first fort in the Province of North Carolina, built under Act of Assembly of 1745 and completed 1764, and named in . . . — Map (db m4754) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Fort JohnstonGuardian of the Cape Fear River
Confederate Lifeline. On January 9, 1861, as secession fever swept the South, an armed body of civilians overwhelmed Fort Johnston’s lone occupant, Ordinance Sgt. James Reilly, and demanded the keys. Reilly quickly surrendered them and received . . . — Map (db m4761) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-11 — Fort Johnston
Built, 1748–54; burned by Whigs, 1775; rebuilt by U.S. government, 1794–1809. Only the officers quarters remain. — Map (db m4777) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Franklin Square“The Grove”
Site for this public park was given to the town of Smithville, which was named in his honor, by Governor Benjamin Smith. His legacy provided that land in this square be used for educational, fraternal, religious and recreational purposes. Th . . . — Map (db m5988) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Indian Trail TreeKeziah Memorial Park — William Barnum Keziah, 1885–1957, “The Rovin’ Reporter”
This ancient gnarled oak has been estimated to be more than 800 years old. Indians may have bent the young tree to mark the trail to their fishing grounds. The tree took root a second time, thus developing the unusual formation. — Map (db m20366) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-89 — Josiah Martin
Last royal governor of North Carolina, 1771–75. Fearing capture, in June 1775 he sought refuge here. Fled offshore to HMS Cruizer in July. — Map (db m4790) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Memorial to North Carolina Militia
Erected April 13th, 1938 by the National Society United States Daughters of 1812 of North Carolina Memorial to North Carolina Militia, stationed at Deepwater Point, about one mile northeast of Southport on the water front, several . . . — Map (db m113673) WM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Mrs. Jessie Stevens Taylor
Erected during North Carolina’s Tercentenary to Mrs. Jessie Stevens Taylor, 1879–1961. She loved her God, Country and fellow man. She served here as a Voluntary Weather Observer and Storm Warning Display Woman from 1900 to 1961. — Map (db m4752) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Old Jail
On February 27, 1904, ground was broken for the “new” jail. Contractor A.J. Robbins received the contract with a low bid of $6,738. Its construction is “a concrete foundation with brick walls, laid in 1:6 bond constructed with a . . . — Map (db m6095) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Railroad & Religion on Rhett Street
Between the Civil War and the construction of the Panama Canal in 1904, local residents and investors desperately sought to surpass Wilmington by building a rail link to the Appalachian coal fields. Smithville would become the first refueling stop . . . — Map (db m6227) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Robert C. Ruark
1915–1965, columnist and author. “The Old Man and the Boy,” were youthful rememberances of his material grandfather, Captain Edward Atkins, in this house. — Map (db m4800) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-93 — Robert Ruark
1915–1965. Columnist and author. His 1957 novel The Old Man and the Boy based on childhood visits with grandparents 1 block W. — Map (db m4798) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Smithville Burying Ground
“Nor even this hour shall want its charm / For side-by-side still fondly we’ll keep / And calmly in each others arms / Together linked go down the deep.” —From the marker for Emeline L. Taylor and Major George Taylor who were . . . — Map (db m6229) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — Southport’s First Fire Alarm
January 1916. Founded in 1893, the Southport Volunteer Fire Department was officially organized with the election of officers and adoption of a constitution and by laws on 21 January, 1916. Authorized purchase of the city’s first fire alarm bell . . . — Map (db m5996) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Southport — D-110 — Stede Bonnet1688–1718
Barbadian planter turned pirate made North Carolina his base, 1718. Captured in naval battle few miles east. Hanged in Charleston. — Map (db m101979) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Sunset Beach — Honor America's VeteransSunset Beach, North Carolina
Thanks for our freedom This Memorial, dedicated on November 11, 2015, and funded by private donations, honors the Men and Women Who Have Served Our Nation. It was made possible through the heart, vision, dedication, and tireless efforts . . . — Map (db m105916) WM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — Brunswick Town State Historic Site
Brunswick Town State Historic Site was established on land donated to the State of North Carolina in December, 1952, by James Laurence Sprunt and his four sons, James Laurence Sprunt, Jr., Kenneth Murchison Sprunt, Samuel Nash Sprunt, and Laurence . . . — Map (db m5535) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — Colonel Maurice Moore
A memorial to Colonel Maurice Moore, gentleman and soldier of the King, who in the year of our lord 1725 founded in a wilderness The Town of Brunswick reserving for the glory of God the tract of land on which was built this parish church . . . — Map (db m6510) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — D-92 — Daniel L. Russell1845 – 1908
Governor, 1897–1901; Superior Court judge, 1868–1874; member of Congress, 1879–1881. Born two miles N.E. — Map (db m101291) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — Fort Anderson
Large Confederate fort stands 2 mi. E. After a strong Union attack it was evacuated Feb. 18, 1865, resulting in the fall of Wilmington. — Map (db m6438) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — Fort Anderson
Begun 1861. Named in honor of General Joseph R. Anderson, then commanding military district. The Fort, under command of Brig. Gen. Johnson Hagood, suffered a severe bombardment by a Federal fleet and attack by Federal army under Maj. Gen. J. M. . . . — Map (db m6494) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — Fort AndersonOne Shovelful at a Time — Confederate Lifeline
In 1861–1862, Col. William Lamb and Maj. John Hedrick constructed Fort Anderson, one of several Confederate strongholds that protected Wilmington, a major blockade-running port. They enlarged Fort St. Philip (for St. Philip’s Anglican Church . . . — Map (db m6515) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — D-73 — John LaPierre
Ordained 1707; came to America 1708. Served in many churches in area as missionary of Society for the Propagation of the Gospel, 1732–1755. — Map (db m6483) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — D-53 — Orton Plantation
House built c. 1725, subsequent additions. Home first of Roger Moore, later of Gov. Benjamin Smith, still later of James Sprunt. ¾ miles east. — Map (db m6448) HM
North Carolina (Brunswick County), Winnabow — D-55 — St. Philips Church
Anglican, built under act of 1751. Graves of Governors Arthur Dobbs and Benjamin Smith and U.S. Justice Alfred Moore. Ruins 2 mi. S.E. — Map (db m6467) HM

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