A 1938 snapshot of Havelock and Craven County
A University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill map link here provides insights about Havelock, North Carolina before the coming of the Marine Corps to Cherry Point in 1941. The 1938 map shows the community in its embryonic state and clearly illustrates features as they were nearly 80 years ago. The map also shows New Bern and other parts of the county frozen in time. Map symbols will be found at the top right.
Click on the link above or the image at left for the full map. Increase the size of the map with the built-in tools and click on the right side of it so the Havelock features will be easy to see. The Neuse River, Slocum Creek, US Highway 70, NC 101 and the railroad are easy to spot. Perhaps a good starting point slightly west of Havelock is the Civilian Conservation Corps camp location marked by a tent symbol and the letters “CCC” beside US 70 and just below Tucker Creek. The Civilian Conservation Corps put men to work on public service projects during the Great Depression and the commemoration of the Havelock camp has been in the news recently. The camp is shown directly across the highway from the current location of the Green Chapel Missionary Baptist Church at Hickman Hill. A solid square with a cross on top is the symbol for a church. Hickman Hill is labeled “Pine Grove” on the map and the old configuration of the road there is evident as it was before the four-laning of US 70 in the 1950s. Homes show up as little squares and often there are more of them than indicated by the map. The road paralleling Tucker Creek leads to the Magnolia Plantation farm, which dates from before the American Revolution. Today it’s known as Carolina Pines. While studying this particular section of the map it may be interesting to note the school symbol — a block with a pennant on top — below US 70 between Tucker Creek and Carolina Pines. This school is currently unknown to us.
Moving farther to the east, today’s Greenfield Heights Blvd. can be seen splitting off to the right from US 70 and returning to it at the intersection of Lake Road. In 1938 the two-lane US 70 followed the course through town of today’s Church Road and Miller Blvd. Back on Greenfield Heights Blvd. note the school symbol denoting the location of the one-room school house for the black children of that era. A photograph of this school appears on page 47 of Historic Images of Havelock and Cherry Point (HIH&CP). The cluster of homes between Gray Road and Lake Road is the heart of “Old Havelock” and across from it the symbol for the Havelock Christian Church. A photograph of this church, its pastor and congregation appears on page 48 of HIH&CP. The dotted line around the cross indicates a graveyard though Havelock Christian is not known to have had one. Another church symbol on the other side of US 70 is Havelock Methodist, page 92, HIH&CP. The symbol indicates the church has no cemetery, but it does indeed have a graveyard dating from the late 1800s. It’s possible that the draftsman of the map confused which church had a cemetery. At the community’s main intersection is the symbol for a post office — a square with a lollipop sticking out — and the standard L-shape map symbol for a business, which marks the location of our famous Trader’s Store.
Next, Highway 101 turns to dirt and then, going off to the left from 101 is the road to Cherry Point. Today, the sprawling Cherry Point air base occupies all the land between Slocum and Hancock creeks, but in 1938 Cherry Point was a tiny settlement on the Neuse River. It had a a handful of homes, a cemetery and an occasional post office. Along the road, symbols indicate a few of about 40 farmsteads, primarily African-American, that actually occupied the area. Farther along Highway 101, the next road with its own school and church symbols, is the Little Witness community, also settled by black folks, and sometimes known as Melvin, N.C. Note also that Cahoogue Creek, off Hancock Creek, is still shown with its early American spelling, Kahookee. Compared to 1938 Havelock, the Harlowe-Blades district, with numerous homes, churches and school as well as its own post office, appears like a big city on the map’s border with Carteret County.
A small triangle indicates a lodge. One of these can be seen at Magnolia Plantation-Carolina Pines, several are at the lakes south of Havelock and two appear at Cherry Point. These symbolize the many hunting and fishing lodges, like Camp Bryan, that accommodated sportsmen from all over North Carolina and the rest of the country during the early part of the last century when Havelock was a well-known getaway spot.
One curiosity about the map that we can’t decipher is at the main Havelock intersection. Blown up to its maximum size something odd seems to float in the center of the road between the Havelock Community Church and the post office. A printing defect? A dragon? If you can figure it our let us know.
— Eddie Ellis