There are towns named Centerville in 45 states, Fairview in 43 and Franklin in 42 states. As it is common for most town names to be repeated all over the United States, such is not the case for Ahoskie, North Carolina. Its nickname is “The Only One” because no other town in the USA, much less the world, has the same name. Now “The Only One” will be the first one of several ECU School of Dental Medicine Clinics, providing much needed dental healthcare in rural areas of North Carolina.
Ahoskie, a part of the Inner Banks region, is also the national birthplace of the 4-H Club, originally called the “Corn Club.” The town, incorporated in 1893, is the largest municipality in Hertford County with approximately 5,000 residents in 2010.Many commercial properties run along the railroad corridor, but have been altered significantly as Ahoskie’s industrial base has changed through the twentieth century. The Ahoskie Historic District is comprised of about 80 city blocks that encompass the oldest portion of the town.
Additional communities in Hertford County include Murfreesboro, Harrellsville, Como, Cofield (CO-field), and the county seat of Winton. It partially borders the state of Virginia and was formed from Bertie, Chowan, and Northampton Counties in 1759. Hertford County took its name from Francis Seymour Conway, earl and later marquis of Hertford.
Once inhabited by Chowanoac, Meherrin, and Tuscarora Indian tribes, the eastern area of Hertford County was explored by English settlers of the early Roanoke Island and Jamestown colonies. Settlers took full advantage of the area’s rich farmland, and folklore tells of two crops a year, as well as the opportunities for fishing offered by the Chowan (CHO-wan) River.
Tobacco, naval stores, corn, pork, lumber and turpentine were shipped down the Meherrin River to the Chowan River across Albemarle Sound to the ocean and destination ports around the world. Even though the county had integrated manufacturing into its economy by the 1950s, agriculture continued to dominate through the early 2000s, with staples such as tobacco, cotton, peanuts, corn, and soybeans among the leading crops.
Chowan College, a Baptist school, was founded in Murfreesboro in 1848 and it is the oldest Baptist woman’s school in North Carolina. Its doors remained open throughout the Civil War and the Reconstruction. The county also hosts the modern-day Meherrin Indian tribe, which has about 700 members.
The ECU School of Dental Medicine Clinic in Ahoskie began seeing patients on Monday, July 16, 2012. For more information concerning appointments or dental care, please contact the clinic at (252) 332-1904
B. Alex White, DDS, DrPH
Unit Chief, Public Health Dentistry
Administrative Assistant – General Dentistry