Christmas Celebrations in Wilkesboro, N.C., As Described in 1848 Letter

Source: Guide to the Hackett Family Papers, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #176

Staff Person: Martha Elmore

Description:

Dr. A. A. Scroggs of Wilkesboro, N.C. in Wilkes County, wrote to his future partner in medical practice Dr. Robert Franklin “Frank” Hackett on December 26, 1848. Dr. Hackett was then at Jefferson College in Philadelphia finishing his medical degree, which he received in 1849. Below is an excerpt from page two of the letter that depicts the celebration of Christmas among prominent families in Wilkesboro. The C. Gordon mentioned in the letter refers to Dr. Hackett’s future wife, Caroline Louise Gordon.

Letter from Dr. A. A. Scroggs of Wilkesboro, N.C., to Dr. Robert F. Hackett at Jefferson

Letter from Dr. A. A. Scroggs of Wilkesboro, N.C., to Dr. Robert F. Hackett at Jefferson

A transcription of the excerpt:

Yesterday (Christmas) passed of very quietly here. They had a “Fox Chase” in the morning which resulted in the Chasing of a Deer till they lost it and then the treeing of an illustrious old “buck rabbit.” This made the “Grand finale” of the day. They returned to Drink a few wash=bowlfuls of egg=nogg & rest during the day. “Mine host” gave us a Dinner at which were invited all the Episcopal brethern [sic] & Dr. Greis together with His Hon Wesley Reynolds; who is now an Episcopalian. We had a “Turkey” done up brown & Miss Lemirah [?] & Kate to set [?] off the table. Dr. Greis had services & Mr. Purvis had prayer=meeting at the old academy. We had a very good meeting–it was a very wet day. At night They danced at the Hotel till 11 O’clock. Lemirah [?] Kate, C. Gordon Laura Hackett & the little girls were their[sic] Dancing. The little Boys bursted Balls of Twine, shot pistols, etc. till our village seemed quite city=like and thus passed the day.

For more information see the Hackett Family Papers (#176) in the Special Collections Department of ECU’s Joyner Library at http://digital.lib.ecu.edu/special/ead/findingaids/0176. For further information on the Hackett family, see the Gordon and Hackett Family Papers in the Manuscripts Department of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library at http://www.lib.unc.edu/mss/inv/g/Gordon_and_Hackett_Family.html.

Letter of Walter Clark to Dr. Charles O'Hagan Laughinghouse

Letter to Dr. Charles O'Hagan Laughinghouse from Walter Clark

Letter to Dr. Charles O'Hagan Laughinghouse from Walter Clark

Source: Charles O’Hagan Laughinghouse Papers, East Carolina Manuscript Collection #267

Staff Person: Maury York

Description:

Charles O’Hagan Laughinghouse (1871-1930), a native of Pitt County, North Carolina, worked as a physician in Greenville from 1893, when he was graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s medical school, until his untimely death. Locally, he served for many years as county coroner, county health officer, and physician of East Carolina Teachers Training School. Active in state health affairs, Dr. Laughinghouse assumed leadership roles in the Medical Society of the State of North Carolina and the State Board of Health. He served as state health officer from 1926 until 1930. Beginning around 1900, Dr. Laughinghouse worked tirelessly to establish a hospital in Pitt County. He was instrumental in having a bond proposal submitted to Pitt County voters in the fall of 1916. The failure of this measure prompted North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Walter Clark to write this letter of condolence. Clark, editor of the State Records of North Carolina, was a leading voice of the Progressive Movement in North Carolina during the early Twentieth Century. Frustrated by this and future setbacks, Dr. Laughinghouse and three other local physicians in 1924 opened Pitt Community Hospital as a private facility. It was located above a store on Fifth Street in Greenville.

For more information about the Charles O’Hagan Laughinghouse Papers, see the online finding aid available at http://digital.lib.ecu.edu/special/ead/findingaids/0267/