Latter Part of the 19th Century
It has been noted that in the late
nineteenth century many inventions were produced
to make life less complicated for people, as well as
make drastic changes in life as it had previously been
known. In addition to the telephone the American
people invented the light bulb, the refrigerator, the
electric streetcar, barbed wire, the typewriter, the
skyscraper and the horseless carriage (automobile).
In 1880 another reorganization of the railroad
switched the control of the railroad to Seaboard Airline Railway. The railroad remained uncompleted until
1887 when at that time it finally reached Rutherfordton.
A final merger occurred in 1900 and the railway became known as Seaboard Air Line Railway.
Trips to Seashore
The Mt. Holly News of July 14, 1892, ran an
advertisement about a "Grand Excursion" to the
seashore on the Seaboard Airline Railway. It stated
that the train would depart from Rutherfordton at 6:30
AM and would arrive in Wilmington at 7:00 PM on
July 27, 1892 and the return trip would be on the 29th.
Two special coaches were provided for the ladies and
their escorts. The fare from Mt. Holly, round trip, was
The Stock Laws
Up until the late 1800's people built fences
around their homes and gardens and the stock animals
were allowed to roam freely, intermingling with all the
neighbors' stock. However, in 1880 there was discussion about not having to build fences at every house
to keep animals out, but rather people with livestock
would fence them in and the people who had no livestock
need not build fences.
Also in the early 1880's licensed distilleries in
Gaston County outnumbered churches 40 to 1. Several Stanley Creek
and Village of Brevard Station people were listed on the 1880 Federal
Census as having the occupation of distiller.
In 1880 Brevard Station had two doctors, one
Dr. William M. Reedy and the other was Dr. Thomas F.
By 1883 Dr. Costner had left town to practice
elsewhere and Dr. William Reedy's brother, Howard,
had joined him in Brevard Station to practice medicine.
On 22 April 1885 Dr. Howard Reedy married Sarah
Florence Rutledge, the daughter of William Gilkey and
Susan Jane Rutledge. Later in June of 1883 Dr. Salon
Peterson of the University of Virginia had located here.
In the Gastonia Gazette of 27 June 1884 it was
reported that Dr. William H. Wilson, having returned
from Louisville, Kentucky Medical College, "was now
located in Stanley Creek and was associated with Dr. J.
M. Templeton of Dallas, NC in the practice of medicine
Brevard Station was one of seven incorporate
townships within Gaston County in the year 1883. On
March 30th of that year the Gastonia Gazette reported
that a magistrate for each town in the county was appointed by the Legislature. Magistrate for the town of
Brevard's Station was Mr. Charles L. Gattis.
Businesses In The New Town
In 1883 Brevard Station had four mercantile
businesses. One run by Mr. Thomas F. Wilkinson;
another by Mr. Henry M. Summerow; one run by Benjamin F. Carpenter and another run by Mrs. Adeline S.
McLurd (Sister to Henry M. Summerow) and James W.
Two wagon shops were located here in 1883.
William C. Sherrill managed one and the other was
owned by Charles J. Peterson.
A sawmill in town around 1883 was run by August Farley.
Also in the Gastonia Gazette of 25 April 1884,
Mr. John B. Richards advertised that he had rented a
Sawmill from a firm in Pleasant Ridge, NC, and would
do all kinds of sawing "cheaply and as well as can be
The beginning of the year 1883 also brought to
Brevard's Station Village a new school. Known as
"Brevard High School" - it was managed by Professor J. F. Brower as principal and his wife as assistant
principal as well as music instructor. Professor Brower
was a graduate of Trinity College (now Duke University) and known as a fine scholar.
Advertisements were made in the newspapers
for scholars to locate in the town of Brevard Station to
attend this new academy. It was noted that room and
board could be had from several families in the town at
$8.00 per month.
By April of that year the new school was deemed a success
with about 45 students and more still coming. Professor Brower
had gained the respect of the people of Brevard's Station, as a teacher and a gentleman.
Mrs. Brower, the music teacher, had 8 to 10 students.
The Federal Census for the year 1890 shows population that year for the town of Stanley Creek
In 1891 hundreds of North Carolina people joined the land rush to Oklahoma.
On 17 April 1891 the Stanley Creek Cotton
Mill was organized and began operations.
In the year 1893, January in this area was bitterly cold. Cotton factories on the Catawba River had
to shut down because of 4 1/2 inch thick ice on the river.
6 January 1898 - The Gazette - "Telephone
construction forces under Mr. Gene Starnes
began work in Dallas yesterday on the extension
to Stanley Creek. Their first work is setting up
Mr. Robert B. Babington who married a Stanley lady, Miss Hattie McLurd,
was a telegraph agent with the Seaboard Railroad in Mt. Holly, NC. His
interest in the telegraph and electricity inspired in him the desire to
build a telephone, which he did, in the town of Mt. Holly in the years
1895 and 1896. Thus began his career with the telephone company which
lasted many years. He is, perhaps, best remembered for his philanthropic
interest in establishing the Orthaepedic Hospital for Crippled Children
in Gastonia during the height of the polio epidemic.
Brevard Station Becomes Stanley Creek
In 1869 the postal authorities in Washington
City requested that the Brevard Station Post Office
name be changed because there was already another
town in the state called Brevard. Therefore on 15 July
1869 the Post Office name was changed to Stanley
Creek, which had been the name of the actual post
office managed by Valentine Derr on the waters of
Stanley Creek. The Postmaster of the Stanley Creek
Post Office in the unincorporated village of Brevard
Station in 1869 was Walter C. Withers.
Because of the conflict in the mailing address
and the name of the community, which had been
incorporated in 1879, town officials proposed
changing the town's name to the Post Office name.
Therefore in 1893 an amendment was made to change
the name of Brevard's Station to Stanley Creek.
At that same time additional land was
incorporated into the town limits. The boundaries
began at James A. Morris' tan-yard on the North end
of town on to John "Buck" Smith's property, west of
his house which was somewhere near the location of
the W. G. Hawley house. As the line crossed the
Railroad track it went by Reece Broome's blacksmith
shop near the tracks. , The line then went past J. W.
McLurd's line and on to John P. Abernethy's land,
then crossing the Railroad again north of the James A.
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