GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – “We really do want to preserve something for the future,” said Roger Kammerer, a Pitt County historian.
“They would find that life was not what they have today,” added Joanne Honneycutt with the Eastern Carolina Village & Farm Museum.
A nod to the past shows just how far we’ve come.
“We represent eastern North Carolina between 1840 and 1940,” said Kammerer.
The Eastern Carolina Village & Farm Museum started out as a simple idea.
“Connor Eagles and Les Turnage had an idea of creating a display of tools,” said Kammerer.
“Well, everybody would come up and say oh my gosh,” continued Honneycutt. “They realized that they had something that people were interested in.”
“It got larger the next year and even larger the next year and next thing you know after a few years you’ve got a village,” explained Kammerer.
“We used to be on the fairgrounds,” said Honneycutt.
“The county gave us this wonderful piece of property and envisioned it as a part of their complex, this fantastic complex out here,” said Kammerer. “And so in 2009, we picked up the village and moved it over here.”
A walk through the village is truly like taking a step back in time. Many of the buildings on the back end of the village were rebuilt from old tobacco barns.
“We tell lots of stories, some funny, but it’s based in reality that it was tough,” explained Kammerer. “We’ve got the schoolhouse from about 1903.”
“Now to me, that is an unbelievable experience for a woman to walk through that door and know that she was going to be facing six year olds and 16 year olds in the same classroom,” said Honneycutt.
“We’ve got the store which came from Pactolus and that was from 1879 to 1982,” said Kammerer.
“Our mall: this is our general store,” added Honneycutt. “It’s a store of firsts. First telephone, first post office. This store was the first one in that area to have gasoline.”
“We get gobs and gobs of little kids and that’s so much fun because this is an alien world to them,” said Kammerer. “They have no clue. It’s all new stuff. So they enjoy it, and also too older people enjoy it. Of course they lived it.”
“We’re able to show a contrast and show progress, which is important,” added Honneycutt.
“Reminders give you pleasure and so we’re here trying to preserve something of our past,” said Kammerer.
Parts of our past have faded away like the sunset. But the village is a place to get a glimpse of way back when.
The Eastern Carolina Village & Farm Museum have a Fall Fair on Saturday, November 4, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.