Friday, July 25, 2008

Gates County: The Rest of the Story

Although seeing Merchants Millpond State Park (near Gatesville-pop. ca 300) was my main reason for going to Gates County on July 1, I ended up seeing some other things that piqued my interest that day. You can see from the picture on the left, I passed through the community of Tarheel (on Hwy 158) while in Gates County. (This is different from the town of Tar Heel-two words instead of one-down in Bladen County.)

Down the road from Tarheel on Hwy. 158 was the community of Roduco. I didn't see much business there, but this post office. I wanted to give it a fresh coat of paint and spruce it up before I drove on.

In the community of Eure, I came upon this cute little birdhouse store (called Powell Ln. Birdhouses) on the corner of Highway 158 and Powell Lane. There is a tall birdhouse leaning on the left side of the building, and a smaller birdhouse on the porch floor (to the right of the door). I stopped to inquire on a Tuesday afternoon, but as you can see from the sign, the work week hours are from Call to 3589761.

Gates County was formed in 1779 from several other northeastern North Carolina counties, and was names for General Horatio Gates, whose American troops won at the Battle of Saratoga in 1777. In 1790, the population of the county was 5, 372. The population of the county in 2002 was 10,720--not quite double the 1790 figure. Wow. This and other interesting historical facts about Gates County can be found here.

Gates County is considered part of the Inner Banks of North Carolina. The Great Dismal Swamp is partially located in Gates County, but I didn't make it there this time. (If you check out the link, you'll see they've been having trouble with fires this summer. I hope to see the Great Dismal Swamp for myself when I visit Pasquotank or Camden Counties.)

I wish I remember where in Gates County I saw this quaint, patriotic porch!

I found Gates County to be a charming rural area, and Merchants Millpond State Park definitely is a jewel. I'd highly recommend a trip there!

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