Promise' Land

On the south side of Morehead City, families of Willises, Lewises and Guthries came from Shackleford Banks in search of high ground and opportunities for their families.  Today, descendants of these same families share a proud kinship with other Diamond City neighbors now living on Salter Path and communities Down East.

Promise’ Land

  • The Promise’ Land was developed as part of the Sheppard Point Land Company property, later to become Morehead City, named for Governor John Motely Morehead. During the 1880s and 1890s, fishermen bought land and began to move from Shackleford Banks, after a series of hurricanes. Houses were disassembled and floated across the sound and reconstructed in the Promise’ Land.
  • The story relating to the term “Promise’ Land” associated to this part of Morehead City has many variations, but most agree that it was the safe high ground (as compared to storm-wretched Shackleford) that made it seem like a “Promised” Land for Banks residents.  The reference to the hymn by the same name is also part of the tradition.
  • The boundaries of the Promise’ Land are somewhat sketchy but are generally between 12th - 15th and Evans St to Bogue Sound.
  • The Promise’ Land remained a community of fishermen and boatbuilders until the very recent past.
  • The Promise’ Land was home to Kib Guthrie’s Store, the center of activity. It was run by Kilby “Kib” Guthrie, Jr. It leaned to the left quite severely and was torn down after he died.Kib-Guthrie-in-his-store-web.jpg
  • Gretchen Guthrie Guthrie’s Carteret Love Song, a collection of poetry and prose, tells of the close cultural connections between Shackleford and the Promise’ Land.