Mr. Russell’s Classroom: A Local History Lesson With Professor Carter

Welcome to Mr. Russell’s classroom, where we want to help complement your remote learning during this unique school year. Today’s assignment is all about history and we’ll call it, “offbeat” history!

We’re talking famous pirates, famous explorers, famous frontiersman, and a very famous president! There are a lot of fascinating historical facts about North Carolina that you may not be aware of because they’re not necessarily taught in the regular curriculum at school. But this is a different kind of classroom and this morning, “professor” John Carter is here with us to tell us about some…what we’ll call…DID YOU KNOW historical tidbits?!?

Did you know:

Lincoln County:

Did you know, one of the most infamous pirates of all time is buried in Lincolnton?

  • That’s right, it’s said the pirate Jean Lafitte is buried beneath a granite-topped table monument in St. Luke’s Churchyard, just off Main Street in downtown Lincolnton.
  • Now there’s a bit of a mystery here, the grave is actually that of Lorendzo Ferrier, who was born in France in 1780. How he happened to come to Lincolnton isn’t exactly clear but it was rumored that he was the notorious Jean Lafitte.
  • You can visit the gravesite yourself and see what you think!

Davie County:

Speaking of gravesites, you know that pioneer hero Daniel Boone once lived in North Carolina. But did you know, his parents are buried in a cemetery in Davie County where they once lived? (that’s just northeast of Charlotte)

  • There’s no mystery about this one, Squire Boone and his wife Sarah Morgan Boone are buried in Mocksville.
  • The Boone’s moved to North Carolina from Pennsylvania in 1752 when Daniel was 17, of course, he later moved on, but not before staying in the area that is now named for him that is, of course, Boone, North Carolina!

Lincoln County:

Speaking of parents, did you know the father of one of the greatest legends of the wild west was born near Charlotte?

  • We’re headed back west to Lincoln County again because that’s where Nicholas Porter Earp was born in 1813.  Recognize that name?  Earp?  Nicholas was the father of Wyatt Earp, the famous lawman!
  • However, Nicholas Earp didn’t stay in Lincoln County for too long. Shortly after he was born, the family moved to Kentucky and then later, Illinois, where Wyatt Earp was born in 1828.
  • By the way, Wyatt Earp’s father wasn’t the only Earp born in North Carolina…Wyatt’s grandmother, Martha Ann Early Earp, was born in Avery County.

Rutherford County:

Speaking of famous historical figures, perhaps THE most famous! Did you know our 16th president, Abraham Lincoln, was born in North Carolina? Well, that’s certainly what a lot of people think.

  • In fact, if you go to Bostic in Rutherford County, just west of Charlotte, you’ll find a special marker that points you to the area where it’s believed Lincoln was born.
  • There’s quite a tale behind it all and it centers on Lincoln’s mother, Nancy Hanks, as the story goes, was not married at the time and was living with the family of a man by the name of Abraham Enloe.
  • Not long after Abe was born, Nancy Hanks moved to Kentucky where she married Tom Lincoln. Pretty interesting, isn’t it!

And that’s your “Did You Know” history lesson for this morning. Stay tuned, sometime down the road Professor Carter is going to take you to another Did You Know place not far from Charlotte, a city that some believe is sitting on the mouth of…….a volcano!

 

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