Swier-Huff Family Tree

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Nathan Pike Find a Grave Memorial

Source Information

  • Title Nathan Pike Find a Grave Memorial 
    Short Title Nathan Pike Find a Grave Memorial 
    Author Bryan S. Godfrey 
    Publisher Find a Grave 
    Call Number 127259480 
    Repository Find a Grave 
    Source ID S28 
    Text Birth: Aug. 2, 1760
    North Carolina, USA
    Death: Jun. 13, 1844
    Wayne County
    North Carolina, USA

    Believed to have been born in either Pasquotank Co., NC (where his parents were from) or in the Carver's Creek Friends Meeting area of present-day Bladen Co., NC. His father settled in present-day Pikeville, Wayne Co., NC shortly thereafter.

    The following is quoted from pages 128-29 of Ruth Pearson Harper's "History of the Pearson Family of Wayne County, North Carolina 1700-1981" (1982), who was summarizing an article from "The Goldsboro New-Argus" of March 22, 1970 entitled "Pikeville: Its History Spans More Than 200 Years":

    Although Pikeville has been an incorporated town for only 79 years, its history dates back more than two centuries.

    In December 1763 the King of England gave a grant of land to Samuel and Annie Pike, believed to have contained 2500 to 3000 acres. Most of the land was transferred to Nathan Pike in 1785.

    The township, town, and post office were named for Nathan Pike. Quite a prominent man, he operated a large tavern--a rambling structure--located about three-fourths of a mile east of the present town at the junction of the Newbern-Fayetteville stage coach road and a north-south road. Pike also operated a trading post and shop, and mail was received and dispatched there. He also kept horse stables which provided changes of horses for the coaches. This was Pike's Junction.

    The nearest market for cotton was Fayetteville about 60 miles to the west. From there it was shipped down the Cape Fear River to Wilmington. Petersburg, VA, was the nearest market for tobacco, hogs, forest products, tar and turpentine, and various farm products.

    Nathan Pike, a Quaker, had no slaves but he did have a number of indigent white children bound to him. He also worked a large number of persons who had been imprisoned for debt and minor offenses.

    The town began to grow when the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad (now the Seaboard Coast Line) was completed about 1840. The town developed along the railroad.

    The tavern and inn were destroyed by Sherman's Army. His men camped in the area for several days and did great damage to the property of Rachel Pike, Nathan's widow (this must be an error since Rachel's date of death is given as May, 1850).

    Col. B.W. Fort traded right-of-way for the railroad for railroad stock. Then he donated land for the churches, the school, and the post office.

    About 60 or 65 years ago there was a government whiskey dispensary in Pikeville. The town was incorporated in 1891.

    Then the reporter told the tragic story of Needham T. Perkins, grandson of Nathan and Rachel Maudlin Pike. It is also summarized for the readers of this work.

    More than 104 years ago Rev. Needham T. Perkins, prominent Quaker minister and merchant, was beaten, robbed, and left for dead. The story was told by Mrs. Mary Perkins Fentress on her 75th birthday in 1926. Over 69 years ago she used to visit her aged grandfather, Samuel Perkins. He owned a mill and a large section of the country around Pikeville. She often spent time in Pikeville with her father, Needham T. Perkins, a merchant in Pikeville and a Quaker preacher.

    When the Civil War came on, her father moved to the farm. On January 20, 1865, he was returning home from Wilmington where he had been to sell turpentine and to transact other business. He had $1200.00 in money and about $800.00 in valuable effects on him. When the train stopped at 10:00 P.M., he started home, about a mile and a half away; it was a beautiful moonlit night. After he had gone about half a mile, two men jumped from behind a pine tree. They fired at him but the gun did not go off, so they beat him cruelly and robbed him.

    He remained there nearly an hour in a senseless condition. Later he was able to walk a mile to his father's house. When he tried to tell what had happened, he lost consciousness for six hours, and for three days it seemed he could not live. However, he managed to live two more years. Although he was badly disfigured and never fully recovered, he continued to preach until death at the age of 51.

    The tree and its stump have long been gone, but a monument made of rocks from nearby fields marks the spot. In the center of the monument on Perkins Mill Road is a memorial stone plaque. It reads: "Erected in memory of Rev. Needham T. Perkins, minister of the Friends Church, for his outstanding work as a religious leader. Robbed and attempted murder here on Jan. 20, 1865, resulting in death Nov. 24, 1868."

    Still standing a short distance down the road from the monument is the old home to which the almost murdered man made his way. He was buried in the family cemetery in a field back of the house.

    Family links:
    Samuel Pike (1712 - 1784)
    Sarah Overman Pike

    Rachel Maudlin Pike (1767 - 1850)*

    Absilla Pike Edgerton (1788 - 1865)*
    Rachel Pike Perkins (1795 - 1862)*

    *Calculated relationship

    Specifically: Probably buried at Nahunta Friends Cemetery or one of the Pike family plots in or near Pikeville, NC 
    Linked to Nathan Pike