New walking tour spotlights Elizabeth City State Teachers College District

Kesha Williams
February 07, 2011

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Elizabeth City boasts six National of Register historic districts and will soon have a walking tour booklet for each district thanks to the hard work of the Elizabeth City Historic Neighborhood Association (ECHNA).

While the preservation and recognition of historic structures are at the heart of the association's mission, public education is one of the organization's greatest achievements. Those districts led to the creation of Historic Walking Tours. For tourists and locals, the tours are a wonderful way to explore the town any season of the year. The lessons you learn will simply amaze you.

"These tour books will keep history alive for generations. The locals wouldn't otherwise have a convenient brochure that dispels beginnings of the city," Jean Baker, ECHNA member and past president said.

The town's historic structures after all reveal the intricate details of the town's origin. Home and building names reflect prominent residents who contributed to the town's social, academic or political causes. Notice brick patterns in buildings, on sidewalks and on roads. See the assorted use of stained glass windows in town. Observe the frequent use of crown molding on the facade of Main Street buildings. They indicate the collection of construction materials available at the time of the buildings' formation. Their wide scale use indicates the era in which the town evolved. Find a pair of comfortable walking shoes, tuck a Historic Walking Tour brochure in your tote bag and see the sights.

"The city is so rich in architectural history, it's important to capture it in print. Boaters and other tourists love to learn the history of small towns, booklet in hand as they stroll the districts. This is a wonderful way to expand the tourism season beyond the warm months," Baker.

"We are delighted to now lead the tourists to the campus for a tour of the historic buildings there. We think it will become popular for families who visit for commencement, homecoming celebrations and other festivities to campus. Having 10 buildings on the campus added to the National Register of Historic Places is wonderful addition to the university's history."

The latest addition to the tour booklets is Elizabeth City State Teachers College District. This booklet for this district  joins the Main Street Residential District booklet which was published spring 2010. Four additional booklets are in production and will be available soon. Booklets will soon be published for Northside National Register Historic District, Main Street Residential District, the Shepard Street-South Road Street National Register Historic District and the Riverside National Register Historic District. All will be available to the public at no charge at Elizabeth City Pasquotank County Tourism Development Authority. Each district is marked by special color coded signposts.

The Elizabeth City State Teachers College National Register Historic District includes 10 sites on the campus of Elizabeth City State University: Lane Hall, Symera Hall, the Principal's House, Moore Hall, The Trigg Building, the Evelyn A. Johnson Classroom Building, Butler Hall, Bias Hall, the Practice School and Williams Hall.