Below is a list of columns as they appear in each section at this time:
Welcome Column: My first column, and what it's all about.
What's In a Name? A brief look at the long, schizophrenic history of just how New Bern spells its name.
Celebrating One Year of Columns: A little (very little) history of my own.
Nicknames of North Carolina.
Researchers Beware: Many commonly referred-to sites such as Wikipedia can contain significant factual errors.
What If...? The Might-Have-Beens of New Bern history.
Benjamin Franklin and the Turkey: Did he really want it to be the national bird?
1629: The First Proprietor. All you ever wanted to know about Sir Robert Heath and his very funny hat.
1660: Happy Birthday North Carolina! My own vaguely controversial stab at identifying Tar Heel's birth.
1663: John Locke (no, not from Lost!), Lord Cooper and the Carolina Constitutions.
1672: George Fox visits North Carolina. It was the Quakers, and not the Anglicans, who first brought the Word of God to what would become the Old North State.
Our Founding: Observations on the founding of New Bern.
1709: The Curious story of New Bern's founding citizens—the Palatines.
1714: The Battle of Fort Neohoroka: a look at the climactic battle of the Tuscarora War.
1729: The birth of North Carolina's best-known colonial governor.
1752: Counterfeiters: Counterfeiting was a serious crime in Colonial days, causing serious harm and resulting in serious consequences for those who were caught trying it.
1763: Founding Teacher: Thomas Tomlinson had his work cut out for him at the New Bern Academy.
1764: William Tryon's Atlantic Crossing: Our greatest colonial governor had a little adventure on the way.
1765: The Death of Arthur Dobbs: A brief look at the final years of this interesting colonial governor.
1767: Great Wolf: Governor Tryon sets the Cherokee boundary in western North Carolina.
1770: Colonial medicine: Our forefathers had to grin and survive and bear it.
1772: The Christmas Church: The founding of Centenary United Methodist Church.
1780: When the Neuse River froze over ferryman Mr. Williams celebrated with a ball.
1789: North Carolina Signs the Bill of Rights: When it comes to important things, North Carolina takes its time.
1790: A Day at the Races: New Bern's colonial race track.
1791: The Tragic Death of Miss Margaret Tryon. As a little girl at Tryon Palace, this colonial governor's daughter had no inkling of the creepy fate in store for her.
1792: The USRC Diligence, forefather of the modern Coast Guard cutter, is stationed in New Bern.
Antebellum: A look at African American slave holders.
1809: The Drowning of Amos Madden. Following clues from a tombstone to discover a curious event.
1813: The Henry-Stanly duel. Thomas Stanly follows in his brother's footsteps... and loses.
1825: Charlie Roach. The black sheep of New Bern.
1829: The Invention of the revolving-chamber gun: Was it really Samuel Colt's or a New Bern man's?
1830: Dog laws: And you think today's leash laws are tough?
1836: Athens of North Carolina. New Bern has always been known for its theater performances.
1854: Captain Robert's Spider Lilies.
1855: The Gaston House: New Bern's finest hotel opens its doors.
1861: Phrenology: The quack science was alive and well in antebellum New Bern.
1861: Fort Sumter's collapse wasn't exactly scorned in New Bern.
1861: North Carolina reacts to Lincoln's call for troops.
1861: A Confederate Yankee in Christ Church's Court.
1862: The foibles of Confederate Colonel (and minister) James Sinclair in the Battle of New Bern.
1862: Gabriel Rains invention, the land mine, claims its first victim.
1863: Wilkie James and the 54th Massachusetts: New Bern's tie-in to the author Henry James and to the famous 54th Massachusetts Colored Regiment.
1864: The Confederates gain a victory in New Bern with the sinking of the Union gunboat Underwriter.
Post Civil War: Tabernacle Baptist Church currently stands on land once resided on by a former slave.
1882: James O'Hara, Congressman. The story of one of North Carolina's earliest African American congressmen.
1888: Furnifold Simmons: the races that foreshadowed the Jim Crow days.
1889: Henry Cheatham: the First North Carolina African American congressman.
1898: George H. White, Last Black Congressman. Born a slave, he would become the last Black congressman before the Jim Crow era took hold.
1900: Gilbert Water's Buggymobile. North Carolina's first horseless buggy.
1904: Johnny Gaskill. The first volunteer New Bern fireman to die in the line of duty--maybe.
1911: The Athens Theater: Some bigger, none better.
1922: The biggest urban fire in North Carolina's history.
1927: William Gaston's antebellum song is adopted as the North Carolina state song.
1931: Edgar Elliott, fireman hero.
1963: The birth of Craven Regional Hospital.
Welcome to the Archives of my weekly New Bern History column, which runs Mondays in the New Bern Sun Journal! I have written over 50 columns so far, so it will take a while to get them all archived. Please check back to see what's new--you can also, of course, go to the archive in the Sun-Journal. In most cases I have re-edited, up-dated or added commentary to these columns, so you may well find information not previously used.
While I'm at it, allow me to invite you to buy the books I have written on New Bern history (Christmas is coming... right?) Just follow the link below.
Then, below that, you will find an index of columns I've uploaded so far.
Be sure to contact me here!
Bill Hand's books on New Bern History
Remembering Craven County: Tales of Tarheel History
Meet fascinating people and relive interesting events from New Bern's past (her founding to the Civil War) in these informative and entertaining essays. Illustrated.
A Walking Guide to North Carolina's Historic New Bern
Four fascinating walking tours of New Bern's historic district including a colonial/antebellum tour, a Civil War tour, a Gilded Age tour and a Historic Churches tour. Illustrated.