Click to view. Duplin's county newspaper! The Duplin Times is Duplin County's newspaper- the number one source for local news reaching a significant portion of the population. County news is our specialty, covering courthouse, commissioners, school board and general news throughout Duplin County.
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Subscriptions are available by mail or with our online e-edition. In addition to our weekly publications, we produce a number of special sections throughout the year that highlight local events and promote specific areas of interest. We have partnered with the Duplin County Tourism Department since to produce an award winning Duplin County Welcome Guide that promotes tourism in our region, and have been the official newspaper on record of and have produced the guides for the North Carolina Muscadine Festival, Carolina Strawberry Festival, and Duplin County Agribusiness Fair.
Throughout the year, we also provide special feature spaces that enhance the value of our papers to both readers and advertisers. From our weekly editions to our special pages and publications, we never stop trying to be YOUR county newspaper, and always work to make your reading experience the best! For access to the e-edition of the Duplin Times please contact our customer care staff at New Subscription:. To start your new subscription, please Click Here.
Manage Your Subscription:. To renew your subscription, place your paper on vacation or to report a delivery issue. Click Here. All court functions are now performed by state-paid personnel. Our expanded county government has caused us to add the County Manager system. And from the mouth of said Rockfish Creek up the meanders thereof to the head, thence a line crossing Black River at the mouth of Clear River, and thence continuing on due west to South River and up South River, the meanders thereof to Black Mingo and up Black Mingo to the head.
All to the north of said creek and lines was formed into a county by the name of Duplin, this county then contained all the waters runing into the North East River on either side from the mouth of Rockfish Creek up to the head thereof. Gabriel's Parish. John Sampson and Henry Hyrne were directed to run the line. The justices of the peace were ordered to hold their first court at the house of William McRee at Goshen, at which court they should select a site for the court house, prison, and stocks.
The south and southeast limits of this county are about from 35 to 40 miles from the sea. The face of the country is generally level, except near the large water courses, the ground is uneven and broken with small water courses, but with easy risings and declivities. The forrest growth there is generally oak, hickory, dogwood, wild grape vine, persimmon with a mixture of pine, and shrubs.
The low grounds on these water courses are either swamp or marsh. The swamp lands are proper for rice but very little of it is cultivated. The soil of the high lands is generally light on the surface, the foundation clay, sometimes mixed with gravel or small white flint stone. Apple and peach orchards thrive well while young, but are not durable. He encouraged a number of Scots-Irish and Dutch to come over from Europe to settle his lands, with a promise of certain conditions to give them titles to certain portions of it.
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About the same time, and soon after, a number of families emigrated from Roanoke, Meherrin, and elsewhere, and settled on Cohera, Six Runs, Goshen, and North East. The country being then new, the range fresh and luxuriant, and the country abounding with wild game, their principal object then was raising stock and hunting.
Henry McCulloch, a merchant of London, in association with Arthur Dobbs and others, received grants in for 60, acres on Black River and subsequently grants for more than a million acres in the backcountry of North Carolina, subject to certain conditions as to settlement which were never carried out completely. The first settlement on the McCulloch lands was made in in Duplin County. The earliest settlers of Duplin were Scots-Irish and Swiss. In , McCulloch claimed that he was entitled to 71, acres in Duplin County.
The McCulloch grants were the source of much dispute before the American Revolution. At the first forming of this county, which then included both Duplin and Sampson, it contained but about white poll taxables, and very few negroes. At the commencement of the Revolutionary War it contained about , or 1, white poll taxables very few of them were then emigrants from Europe. Previous to the Revolution, at the time when the Stamp Duty was attempted to be enforced by Royal Governor William Tryon in North Carolina, most of the respectability of the county turned out volunteers, marched down to Wilmington with Capt.
Afterwards, when Governor Tryon marched up the country against the insurgents, commonly called Regulators, none of the inhabitants of Duplin County could be prevailed upon to accompany him, or to enlist in that service, only five or six light horse followed on afterwards and joined him at Alamance. Governor Tryon imputed the tardiness of Duplin County in this affair, to disaffection to the King's government and on his return, authorized Colonel John Ashe, with his militia troops to tarry certain days in Duplin and cause the inhabitants to take on oath of allegiance to the Ling, and issued orders to the inhabitants to attend Colonel Ashe for that purpose.
The inhabitants of Duplin County generally resented this order as an indignity offered them, it not being required of the inhabitants of any other county; very few of the inhabitants attended Colonel Ashe for that purpose, he taried in Duplin only one day and marched on homewards without executing the governor's order. At the commencement of the Revolution, the people in Duplin County were generally united, They formed committees, elected their officers, encouraged the recruiting service, trained the militia in the exercise of arms, held frequent meetings; sent delegates to the conventions at New Bern, Hillsborough, and Halifax.
A number of young men enlisted in the Regular Army and marched to the northward under Capts. At the time when Brigadier General Donald McDonald embodied the Scots Highlanders and Tories in the vicinity of Fayetteville then Campbelton , the Duplin militia almost unanimously turned out, and were in motion, about marched with Col. James Kenan to Rockfish in the vicinity of Campbelton and there joined Col.
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John Alexander Lillington, when Colos. James Gillespie with a company of volunteers from Duplin County, who performed a tour of duty in South Carolina.
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Duplin County sent her quota of men to the aid of Georgia, who marched there under Major General John Ashe and were there with him when defeated at Briar Creek on March 3, Another company of voluntiers and drafts marched from this county under Capt. Three companies of Duplin militia marched with Major John Treadwell to Camden, and were followed by a small company of light horse volunteers under Capt. A company of Duplin militia under Capt. Craig with a body of Brittish troops took possession of and fortified Wilmington, Colonel James Kenan marched down with about of the Duplin County Regiment of Militia and encamped at the long bridge 10 miles above Wilmington, and was there joined by the militia of New Hanover; Onslow, and Jones Counties; when Brigadier General John Alexander Lillington marched down from Uwharrie, and took the command;.
When Lt. General Charles, Lord Cornwallis marched from Guilford Court House to Wilmington, Brigadier General Lillington retreated up the country, and the militia tour of three months being ended, the whole militia was discharged at Kinston. Lor Cornwallis at that time proceeded on his march from Wilmington to Virginia. He passed through Duplin County unmolisted, there being no troops embodied to impede his march, or harass his rear. As he approached, the inhabitants of Duplin County retreated to places of safety, removing their stock, and such property as they could out of the enemy's way; it was now the first week in May of Colonel James Kenan, being informed of their proceedings and where they had formed their camp, collected immediately about 12 or 15 men, went in search of their camp, thinking to disperse them before they became formidable.
He found their camp and some shots were exchanged. Colonel Kenan, being informed of their progress; sent out and was immediately joined by about 60 light horse, with which he encamped at Mr. Clinton's about three miles in front of the Loyalist camp, where he lay two days to watch their motions.
As soon as they found that Colonel Kenan was in their way and their march obstructed, they filed off in the night, left the road and retreated through the woods, down Black River.
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Colonel Kenan, being informed the next day of their retreat by a person whom they detained as a prisoner, and found means to escape from them in the night,. He immediately pursued with his small troop of cavalry, and at daybreak the next morning, came up with them at Portevent's Mill, where they halted to supply themselves with meal; some skirmishing ensued, the Loyalists retreated into the low grounds of Black River, where the horse could not with any probability of success pursue them. Colonel Kenan then determined to ambuscade them at a certain place about three miles ahead, but before got up to the intended place, discovered them ahead, they had quit the swamp and were running across the woods.
The horse rushed upon them in full speed. The Loyalists posted themselves behind trees, and the horse were immediately mixed amongst them. A confused firing commenced, the horse retreated in order to load their guns again, they having but few swords; which gave the Loyalists another opportunity of gaining the swamp; they again pursued, but without success; the Loyalists made good their retreat, got to Wilmington and joined the Brittish troops under Major James H.
In this day's skirmishing there were only two men of the Patriots, and four of the Loyalist party, slightly wounded; Three horses were killed, and two others wounded. The Loyalists baggage which was only their provisions and their baggage horses were all taken. At this time, the Loyalists began to be troublesome in the eastern parts of Duplin County, and were joined by disaffected persons from Dobbs, Onslow, and Jones counties, which were frequently dispersed by Capt.
James Gillespie, who collected some volunteer light horse, and harassed them continually, that he prevented them from making any successful incursions in the middle of the county. At that time, Major James H. Craig determined to visit New Bern, and marched through Duplin County on his way there.
Colonel Kenan had notice of his approach, and made such preparation for defense as he was able, by hastily throwing up a slight breastwork; but inadequate to the purpose intended. At the very instant when Major James H. Craig made the attack on our breastwork with his cannon we were attacked in the rear by Capt. John Gordon with about 60 horse, 10 of which were British dragoons, and two companies of infantry. They had made a circuitous march through the woods, and were close upon our rear before discovered.
Confusion and dismay was the immediate consequence.
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The militia broke, and quit their post before one-half of them had discharged their guns. Colonel Kenan and some of his officers made every exertion they could to rally the men again but to no purpose. Eight or ten of our men were wounded and made prisoners, none were killed. The British had one man killed there. Two days afterwards, Major James H. Craig marched up to the Grove and encamped at Lt.
Colonel Thomas Routledge's house, lay there about three days, collected some cattle, destroyed some crops of corn, burned Capt. Gillespie's and Lieut. Houston's houses, and destroyed such of their property as they could not carry away; then marched on towards New Bern, commiting depredations and enticing slaves to desert their masters and go with them.
They were followed and harassed by some militia from Duplin, Onslow, and Dobbs counties, Capt. John Gordon of the British dragoons was killed on the way by some of the Onslow men. This happened in the first week in August of Thus two British armies marched through Duplin County in the year , and after they were gone, their trace was scarcely perceiveable, the inhabitants on their approach retired out of their way, and as soon as they had passed by, returned to their houses, which they frequently found plundered and their stock driven off.
After this the Loyalists made frequent attempts to embody both in the western and eastern parts of the county, but by the executions of Colonel James Kenan, Colonel James Moore, Capt. James Gillespie and other officers, they were as often dispersed with loss as they attempted to collect together. They never made any considerable head in Duplin County afterwards. The spirit of the Loyalists was now broken, they generally came in and surrendered themselves up to government and complied with the requisitions of the law by going into or finding a substitute in the army of the United States, and Middleton Mobley their leader being abandoned by all his deluded followers was obliged to leave the county, he was afterwards taken in Martin County and brought back to Wilmington, tried, condemned, and executed.
Joseph Thomas Rhodes from Duplin County with a company of about 40 men mostly raw recruits raised in Duplin behaved there with as much personal bravery and intrepidity as any that were in that engagement, they had joined the NC Continental Line but a few days previous to the action. When the line was formed for action, Capt. Rhodes had his post assigned him on the main road leading down Santee, towards the springs; Major General Nathanael Greene in person observed to him, that he expected the enemy would endeavor to force our lines at that place, and if he could maintain his ground he might depend on being reinforced in a very short time.
According to the general's expectation the battle became violent in that part of the line, and the promised reinforcements never came till a very late stage of the action, but the men under Capt. Rhodes's command behaved with the utmost order and bravery, and sustained considerable loss; the reinforcements when they came up took the ground on the left, where at that time the enemy began to retreat.
He then with the few men he had left, and the remains of Captains Goodman's and Porterfield's companies, the captains being both killed advanced near the brick house, and attacked the Brittsh artillery, and took possession of several field pieces, one of which they kept and brought off, the others were retaken by a British reinforcement of superior strength in number.
During the whole of this action, which is said to be the hotest and most bloody, for the number of men engaged, that has been fought during the Revolutionary War, the men under Capt. Rhodes's command, manifested such undaunted bravery as is seldom surpassed by old disciplined veterans. During this action, Capt.
Rhodes himself and thirteen of his men only came off unhurt; the others being killed or wounded, and of those, that came off unhurt, only three of them but what had marks of a ball or a bayonet. Click Here to learn about all of the known officers and men who served in the Duplin County Regiment of Militia during the American Revolution. In June of , the county of Duplin was divided by a line running from the head of Rockfish Creek, where the road crosses Bull Tail branch, nearly north, crossing Stewarts Creek at the bridge and Turkey near the old court house, and Goshen at the mouth of Youngs Swamp.
And all to the west of said line was erected into a separate county by the name of Sampson County. Goshen as well as the North East and several other creeks falling into it, form very large extensive swamps all which are remarkable for the great quantity of large cyprus trees in them. This woud be a desirable object particularly on Goshen, which is the most pleasant, agreeable, and fertile portion of the county.
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The vicinity of the Grove, and near about the court house, is also much esteemed for pleasant situations fertility of soile and wealthy inhabitants. The county of Duplin abounds with good roads through every part of it, leading to and from the court house, with bridges over the water courses, kept in repair by the adjacent inhabitants, there are only two bridges in the county built at public expense, that is the bridge over the North East River at the mouth of Limestone Creek on the road leading from Fayetteville to New Bern, and the bridge over Rockfish Creek on the road leading from Wilmington to Duplin Court House.
There are no toll bridges in the county. Lakes, bays, harbors, canals, cateracts, islands, mines, minerals, medicinal springs, and curiosities, none discovered in the county worth notice. In the upper parts of the county, particularly on Goshen and its branches, where the lands are most fertile and remote from navigation; pork, bacon, Indian corn, and cotton, are the articles mostly raised for market, and conveyed in carts and wagons.