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

William Edward Mattock House circa 1901-1910

Early photo of Mattocks House
(Scanned from Dudley book)
Warshaw Painting SOLD
Prints and Cards available at
Tidewater Gallery
In 1989 the Mattocks House at 107 Front Street was added to the National Register of Historic Places. Built for William Edward Mattocks by master carpenter Robert Lee Smith, the house  was described in the nomination as a three-bay, double pile, center-hall plan Colonial Revival board-and-batten house on full a basement with decorative two-tier back porch and gable dormers. Built 1901-1910s. (NR--Pezzoni) Although the Swansboro Historic District is included on the National Register, the Mattocks House is the only house with a separate/unique listing on the NR.

Warshaw painting SOLD
Prints and Cards available at
Tidewater Gallery

"Waiting for Ferries"
(Scanned from Dudley book)
In his book, Swansboro—A Pictorial Tribute, Jack Dudley wrote about 'The Banks Parties.' - “Beginning as far back as the 1870s, various church groups were having picnics, oyster roasts and fish fries on Bear Island and Bogue Banks. The outings grew in size and later became an annual event on the first or second Saturday in May. The May Day gathering at Bogue Banks became the largest social event and most celebrated holiday of the year. People came from up the White Oak River, Cedar Point, Bogue Sound and the surrounding countryside. The people gathered on the waterfront near the town dock adjacent to the Mattocks house. They dressed in their Sunday best. Most of the clothing was handmade, including their stylish hats.  Lumber barges as well as boats were used to ferry people to the Banks. Vendors on the barges sold lemonade, homemade ice cream and bottled soft drinks. After everyone had arrived, tablecloths were spread on the [Lifesaving] station pier and lunch was served. There were clam fritters, fried chicken, deviled eggs, biscuits, cakes, pies and other tasty dishes that had been prepared at home on a wood-fired stove. Some of the beachgoers imbibed in homemade tomato and grape wine.”

Infant W. E. Mattock
"Willie" Mattocks
William Edward Mattocks was born September 4, 1858 in Swansboro. He was the son of Edward Ward Mattocks 1833-1911 and Mary Elizabeth Gibson.

William Edward "Will" Mattocks married Mary "Mollie" Jane Findeisen, daughter of Charles A. Findeisen (1825-1877) and Margaret Ann Stephens (1830-1865). Findeisen, born in Sachsen, Saxony, met and married his wife in Onslow County.

Mollie's Father 
Charles Findeisen
D.J. Ward and 
W.E. Mattocks
New Bern Grays
In this photograph of two men in uniform labeled "D.J. Ward and W.E. Mattocks, New Bern Grays," it is believed the young man on the left is W.E. "Will" Mattocks. The New Bern Grays were an independent military company formed around 1831. They were among several military groups that came into being prior to the Civil War. It appears that the New Bern Grays functioned into the 1880s. They performed ceremonial duties after the Civil War--on the 4th of July and Memorial Day or when dignitaries came to town. They frequently marched with the Silver Cornet Band. The uniforms in the photo may have actually been band uniforms. (Information from Pete Meyer)

Flora and Mollie
Children of Will and Mollie Mattocks included: Alma Stevens Mattocks 1880-1886, Floyd Glenn Mattocks 1881-1907, Flora Blanche Mattocks 1884-1956 married Mills Kenneth Eure, Cofoloma Vaughn Mattocks 1886-1887, Ida Barnum "Dollie" Mattocks 1888-1969 married ____Sanders and Jesse T. Williams, Susan Gibson Mattocks* born circa 1890 married Joseph E. Bildstein about 1915, Thomas William Mattocks 1891-1940 married Kathleen _____, Zelma Mattocks 1895-1986 "Aunt Pet" married Ray H. Merrell, and Cleara Venters Mattocks 1897-1901. See headstones below; all in Ward-Jones Cemetery, located off of Main Street extension near Hwy 24 (Corbett Avenue) next to the old Swansboro Elementary School.

In 1910, tugboat engineer William E. and Mary J. Mattocks were recorded in Lowndes, South Carolina with son Thomas William Mattocks 18, a saw filer. At that time, 15-year-old daughter Zelma was living with her sister Flora Mattocks Eure in Holy Grove, North Carolina.

The 1920 census recorded W.E. as an "engineer" in the marine trade. By 1930, at home were W.E. and Mary J. Mattocks with daughter Zelma Humphrey 26.

W.E. Mattocks 1951
W.E. Mattocks died January 20, 1954 in Onslow County Hospital, Jacksonville, North Carolina. According to his death certificate, the 96-year-old fell while walking, which resulted in a collapsed lung and fractured hip.(See death certificate below.)

Newspaper Articles and Letter:  
--W.E. Mattocks is putting up some of the fallen houses that blew down in the late storm. (Weekly Record, Sept 16, 1887)
--W.E. Mattocks is teaching at Piney Grove (Weekly Record, Feb. 10, 1888)
-- 1963 Letter Describing Time at Mattocks House about 1900

*W.E. and Mary J. Mattocks' daughter Susan Gibson Mattocks evidently went with them while W.E. was working on a tugboat in South Carolina. Sue G. Mattocks was on the 1910 census as a student at the Confederate Home College in Charleston. She may have met future husband Joseph E. Bildstein while in South Carolina. By 1920 they were in Tinicum, PA; Joseph was a blacksmith in a tank factory and they had two children, ages five and three.

"Ned"  Mattocks
Merchant Edward Ward "Ned" Mattocks, father of William Edward Mattocks, was born July 14, 1833 to John Frazar Mattocks* (son of John Matticks and Aplis Frazar) and Cassandra Ward 1815-1833, daughter of Josiah Ward 1780-1849 and Cassandra Dudley. Josiah Ward was son of David Ward 1745-1799, who was son of Benjamin Ward 1715-1767.

*John Frazar Mattocks and Casandra Ward, parents of E.W. Mattocks, were married 18 Oct 1832 in Onslow County; bondsman was Benjamin W. Russell, witness D.W. Sanders. John F. Mattocks, a Methodist minister, owned the 1840 Hawkins House in the 1860s.

Ned lost his 17-year-old mother, perhaps at his birth or a few months later, and his father seven years later. He was raised by a step mother, Eliza Foy Mattocks who married Philip Koonce, a doctor. Philip Koonce made sure the children (step and biological) were very well educated. I also have record of Ned inheriting land and slaves from his father, John Mattocks, but probably Koonce was the "overseer" of the inheritance until he was of age. Mattocks land would have been out by Bellgrade. (information from Ora Smith)

Mary Gibson 1837-1918
Edward Ward Mattocks married Mary Gibson June 9, 1857 in Onslow County; the marriage was performed by David W. Sanders, justice of the peace.The 1860 census showed Mattocks as the owner of eight slaves. 

When son William E. was about four years old, on January 23, 1862, 28-year-old Edward Ward Mattocks enlisted as a private in Swansboro with Company B, 3rd NC Calvary Regiment--later 41st NC State Troops. This unit was initially known as Edward W. Ward's Company or "Gatlin's Dragoons." Mattocks enlisted for twelve month, but on February 28, 1862, for a $50 bounty, he extended his service to two years. Mattocks was promoted to 4th Sergeant on June 8, 1862.
In the 1870 census, Edward Ward Mattocks was head of household with wife Mary and son William Edward Mattocks. Also in the house were servants Charity Dixon and Alexandra Mundine. Edward was noted as a retail grocer. By 1910, 77-year-old Edward was recorded on Front Street with wife Mary.
Mattocks portraits courtesy Ora Hydrick Smith.


W.E. Mattocks Pulls in Huge Sunfish: In May 1926 a beached 1200-pound Mola Mola was spotted in Bogue Inlet by mariner William Edward Mattocks. Captain Mattocks succeeded in towing the huge fish to Swansboro. After notifying the North Carolina State Museum, curator H.H. Brimley and assistant Harry Davis hurried to Swansboro where they took measurements and made field notes. A paper mâché replica was created; it is still on display at the Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh.

"Cousin" George Dennis Mattocks
"Cousin" George Dennis Mattocks 1844-1898, son of Allen B. Mattocks and Kitturah Catherine Dennis, married twice, first to Christiana Foy and secondly to Mary Alexander Dennis. He began building his home on Stella Road in Silverdale when he returned from the Civil War. He lived in the basement until he finished building it in 1880. 


Debbie said...

Can anyone tell me the parents of Margaret Ann Stephens, mother of Mollie Findeisen, wife of Will Mattocks? My thanks!

Mary Warshaw said...

From my research on, Margaret Ann Stephens, mother of Mary Jane "Mollie" Findeisen Mattocks, was daughter of Christopher Dudley Stephens and first wife Mary __. She was "Mary D" on one census. Have inquired re other researchers, who may know, to see if they can verify full name.

Mary Warshaw said...

Actually, though born in NC, I don't think Margaret Ann Stephens was the daughter of Christopher Dudley Stephens. If her birth and death dates on various trees are correct 26 Apr 1830 (Onslow?)-4 Sept 1865 (Tallahassee, FL), it just doesn't fit. So, we still have no answer.

Debbie said...

Thanks for the comments! I guess we are still no closer to an answer. I agree, something is just not right with the parents of Margaret Ann. I hope someone can answer this question.

Debbie said...

After much research, I have determined that Margaret Ann Stephens is the daughter of Eli and Eveline Stephens. They have a daughter listed on census records named Margaret Ann and the Margaret Ann Stephens Findeison was also listed as having the same birth year. Plus, that would make Francis Marion "Frank" Margaret Ann's brother. He took in 2 of her children after her death. Eli and family also lived in the same area in Florida for a while as the Findeisons. Putting 2 and 2 together I have decided to go with this until otherwise informed! There is no record at all of Christopher Dudley Stephens having a daughter named Margaret Ann. SO, Eli being Christopher's brother still makes them close relations.

Also, I have taken photos and transcribed the Stephens Family Cemetery in Richlands. Hope it helps someone.

Debbie Lloyd

Debbie C. said...

I concur with Debbie Lloyd's comments - I had already questioned the parents of Margaret Ann back in April when I initiated the first blog. Frank (Francis Marion Stephens) and Margaret Ann Richardson Stephens are my great-grandparents. As a child, my mother told me that we were closely related to Christopher "Kit" Stepehens. It is true that Frank and Maggie took in the Findeison children to raise during the time they lived in Florida. My great-great grandfather, Eli Stephens and his wife Eviline, also kept other children for a while when they were living in Florida. There were two Ward children living with them. Another tie to the Ward children, is the fact that my mother's sister was given the middle name of "Ward", which totally threw all of us. We never new why until I began researching our ancestry. Hopefully more will be found out as we progress along this fascinating (to me!) trail.
My thanks, again.
Debbie P. Carmichael

Lois said...

My research says that Eli and Eveline Stephens from Onslow Co. NC were her parents. If you look at the 1870 Census in Florida you will see that Richard and Margaret Findeisen went to live with their uncle Frank Stephens after Margaret and Charles Findeisen died. Also their mother Eveline was living with them. If you track Eveline and her children back to 1850 you will see Eli as their father!