10/01/04 — Wayne urged to preserve and promote its history

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Wayne urged to preserve and promote its history

By Sam Atkins
Published in News on October 1, 2004 2:00 PM

Wayne County residents were praised Thursday for their efforts in helping preserve the area's rich history.

"The people have done so many wonderful things," said Betty McCain, former North Carolina secretary of cultural resources. She discussed the importance of historical preservation during the Wayne County Historical Association's annual meeting at Billie's restaurant in Goldsboro.

Ms. McCain is a native of Faison and now lives in Wilson County. She remembered when she was a little girl during World War II, and she and her friends would climb the water tower in Faison and identify the aircraft coming from Seymour Johnson.

She began her presentation by passing around books about the historical architecture of eastern North Carolina and about the historic houses in Duplin County.

"There are so many things we want to save and preserve," she said.

In particular, she recognized the great job done with the Waynesborough Historical Village in Goldsboro; CSS Neuse in Kinston; and the Charles B. Aycock Birthplace in Fremont.

Educating the people who live here about the area's rich history is important and improves the quality of life, she said. Preservation of homes and artifacts and downtown development helps attract tourism and really provide an economic boost to Wayne County.

Tourism is the second-leading business in the state and in 2002, it was a $13 billion industry, said Ms. McCain. The Cliffs of the Neuse State Park near Seven Springs and all of the wonderful restaurants are just a few of the area's attractions.

Charlotte Brow, association member, said the Wayne County Museum will have an American Indian artifact exhibit in November. The museum is at 116 N. William St. in Goldsboro. Its hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, or by appointment.

Ms. McCain encouraged those in attendance to continue their efforts in historical preservation.

"Wayne County is one of the most interesting places in the state," she said.