"wilmington, north carolina" Top 5 Page for this destination Wilmington by doug48

Wilmington Travel Guide: 235 reviews and 411 photos


wilmington is located on the cape fear river in southeast north carolina. wilmington is the county seat of new hanover county north carolina. wilmington is named after spencer compton the first earl of wilmington. the area around wilmington was settled by english colonialists in the 1720's. up to the outbreak of the civil war the area's economy was based on cotton, tabacco, and lumber production. two significant events in the history of wilmington was the battle of wilmington during the civil war and the 1898 wilmington insurrection. wilmington has much to offer the tourist. downtown wilmington has scores of historic buildings and homes. wilmington has an excellent collection of restaurants and bars and several good business class hotels. about ten miles east of downtown is beautiful carolina beach. for those interested in civil war history fort fisher and fort anderson are a short drive from downtown wilmington. wilmington is a very interesting place to visit in southeast north carolina.

the battle of wilmington was fought between february 11 th and february 22 nd 1865. wilmington was an important blockade running town for the confederacy. cotton, tobacco, and other goods were shipped to the bahamas, bermuda, and england from the port of wilmington on the cape fear river. because these shippments were an important source of cash and armaments for the confederacy the union considered wilmington an important target to attack. wilmington was defended by fort fisher near the mouth of the cape fear river at carolina beach. fort anderson was on the west bank of the cape fear river to defend wilmington from a land attack. in december 1864 the union navy deployed 56 gunboats to shell fort fisher. after a six hour battle the union overran the fort and forced confederate general robert hoke to withdrawl to the sugarloaf line between the fort and downtown wilmington. in february 1865 union forces under the command of general john schofield attacked the sugarloaf line and fort anderson. union general jacob d. cox defeated the forces of confederate general johnson hagood at fort anderson which was a decisive union victory. after the loss of fort anderson confederate general braxton bragg ordered general hoke to abandon wilmington. fortunately for the beautiful antebellum homes and buildings in wilmington schofield elected not to burn the town.

another significant event in the history of wilmington was the 1898 insurrection. the 1898 insurrection also known as the wilmington race riot is considered a turning point in north carolina politics after the era of radical reconstruction following the civil war. this incident is the only instance of a coup d'etat of a municipal government in u. s. history. after the civil war wilmington had a majority african-american population with numerous black professionals, a rising middle class, and a biracial republican party. the catalyst for the race riot was a feud between josephus daniels, the editor of the raleigh news and observer and alexander manly, the editor of wilmington's black owned daily record. the news and observer used wilmington as a symbol of "negro domination" and wrote stories about blacks raping white women. manly refuted these stories in the daily record claiming that these charges represented consensual relationships between blacks and whites. manly wrote that "white men should be more protective of their woman against sexual advances from males of all races". on november 10 th 1898 alfred moore waddell and a group of white businessmen and former confederate soldiers marched to the daily record office where they destroyed the printing equipment and burned the building. during the rest of the day there was rioting and gunfire all over the city. the estimated number of deaths ranges from 6 to 100. waddell and his supporters forced the republican mayor and other members of the city government to resign. waddell was installed as mayor and set up a new democratic city council. after the rioting manly and many blacks fled the city. the north carolina general assembly of 1899 passed jim crow laws that were inforced in the state until the civil rights era in the 1960's.

  • Last visit to Wilmington: Nov 2010
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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