Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Col. Frederick A. Olds

Frederick Augustus Olds (1853-1935)  was a North Carolina historian, newspaper columnist, lecturer, and editor who was an early advocate of preserving and sharing the history of North Carolina and her people.

In a new book by Larry E. Tise, Circa 1903, North Carolina's Outer Banks at the Dawn of Flight, the author devotes Chapter 6 ("A Jaunt Around the Carolina Coast") to the 1908 recollections of Col. Frederick A. Olds.

According to Tise, Olds describes Ocracoke's "snowy white lighthouse," mentions the Doxsee Clam factory, and comments on the island's competing Northern and Southern Methodist churches. He is also fascinated by the "refreshing...broad dialect" of the locals.

Olds was one of the early writers to observe that the residents of Ocracoke and other Outer Banks villages were "the only North Carolinians who had the privilege 'of seeing the sun rise from and set in the water....'"

Look for Tise's book in your local library or independent book store. 


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  1. Anonymous11:37 AM

    we are on the way to you have this book in the shop?

    1. I am sorry...we do not have this book at the Village Craftsmen. Maybe Leslie at Books to be Red will be getting it.

  2. Anonymous11:40 AM

    I just clicked on the 'doxsee clam factory' link in your story above. I noticed in the picture of the factory that popped up smoke coming out of the smokestack. What did they use for fuel? whale or porpose oil? Not trees I hope! just wondering. Thanks Philip.

    1. I am not sure what fuel was used at Doxsee's. Maybe coal.

  3. Anonymous12:39 PM

    That is a very good question. I want to know if the factory workers were allowed to eat as many steamed oysters as they liked while working there? Perhaps they used propane gas to fire up the steamers or coal. I find it curious that someone would think whale oil was used. Now on the west coast plenty of whales are washing up on the beach so if there was some enterprising LLC to butcher the carcass to harvest the blubber then render the whale oil etsy may be the place to hawk their wares.DD