This small quaint seaport has roots back to April 7, 1730 when Isaac and Jonathan Green Sr. purchased from Ebenezer Harker "a certain plantation and track of land containing by estimation 441 acres situate lying and being in ye Carterett in ye county of province of aforsaid being ye west side of ye mouth off White Oak River." By 1771 Theophilus Weeks started a town on his plantation, laying out a plat and selling lots. Formerly known as Bogue, Week's Point, The Wharf and New Town, the town was officially designated by the North Carolina General Assembly on May 6, 1783. Above photo (from North Carolina State Archives) courtesy Jack Dudley, as included in Swansboro - A Pictorial Tribute

The Story Behind the Portrait of Otway Burns

The portrait of Captain Otway Burns which was presented to the State of North Carolina on behalf of Mr. Walter Francis Burns by Kemp Plummer Battle, LL.D., Alumni Professor of History of the University of North Carolina.

The painting is a life-size head and bust with a sailing vessel in the back-ground. It is a copy of an authentic oil-painting on wood and represents the subject at about forty years of age. Colonel John D. Whitford who knew Captain Otway Burns in his later years has pronounced it a faithful likeness.

The picture is protected by a massive gold frame, glass, and shadow-box and bears the following inscription :

"Captain Otway Burns, born 1775, died 1850, Commander United States Privateer 'Snap-Dragon,' War 1812-15, presented to the State of North Carolina by his grandson, Walter Francis Burns."

The presentation took place in the Senate Chamber, at the Capitol in Raleigh, on Wednesday evening, October 30th, 1901.

Battle's presentation address included, "We are met to honor a man whose fortune it was at important epochs to do good service to the United States and to North Carolina. It is my duty, at the request of his descendants, to show how this honor was won, and what chapters in our history are illustrated by his career.

The portrait, which I have the honor in behalf of Mr. Walter Francis Burns of New York, to present to the state, is that of his grandfather, Otway Burns, captain of a privateer in time of war, and a most useful legislator for his state in time of peace. It delineates him when in his prime, about forty years old.

The original painting from which this is copied, was secured from Mrs. Hall, of Beaufort, an aunt of Jane Hall, second wife of Captain Burns, by Mr. Washington Bryan, and by him transferred to Mr. Walter Francis Burns. The copy is by a pupil of the eminent William M. Chase, of New York, F. Mahler, who has received honorable mention in the Paris Salon."

The above information was gathered from Internet Archive - Captain Otway Burns 
Collected and Compiled in 1905 by Walter Francis Burns.

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