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Home North Carolina Anson County City of Morven Historical Markers Sneedsborough


NC-52, Morven, NC, USA

Latitude & Longitude: 34° 51' 43.4808", -80° 0' 0.4896"
  North Carolina State Historical Marker
    North Carolina State
Historical Marker
    Marker Text:
"Laid out 1795. Promoted as inland port town on Pee Dee River by Archibald D. Murphey. Only graveyard remains, five miles southeast."
     In 1795 a town called Sneedsborough was founded in Anson County on the land of Richard Edgeworth. Sneedsborough was developed as an inland port town, to be connected to the Pee Dee River by a series of canals. The town expanded after its conception and became a small merchant center close to the North Carolina - South Carolina border. Archibald D. Murphey championed the development of Sneedsborough as a port for interior North Carolina, based in part on his personal business investments. The canals proved impossible to build though, stalling the development and growth of industry and the town itself. By the Civil War the town had been abandoned and its remnants were destroyed by Union troops.

     Anson County was formed in 1749 from Bladen County in order to address population growth and reduce distances for the payment of taxes. It was named for Lord George Anson, an English navigator who had worked along the Carolina coast between 1724 and 1735. Anson County was named to honor his bravery, service, and commitment to the Carolina colony.

     Richard Edgeworth, brother of acclaimed British novelist Maria Edgeworth. Edgeworth, arrived in Anson County after escaping England following the death of his opponent in a duel and then getting shipwrecked off the North Carolina coast near Cape Fear. Edgeworth’s rescuer, Moses Knight, brought him back to Anson County, where Edgeworth became involved in land speculation and soon helped to found Sneedsborough, which was named for his stepmother Honora Sneyd.

     Sneedsborough, incorporated in 1795, thrived initially, with an academy founded in 1800. The costs of canal construction proved impossibly high, however, and the canals leading to Sneedsborough never developed. The failure eventually led to the collapse of the town. Eventually the town essentially disappeared, and the troops engaged in Sherman’s March destroyed it completely in the latter stages of the Civil War. The cemetery is all that remains today of the once thriving town.

William S. Powell, ed., Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, IV, 345-346—sketch of A. D. Murphey by H.G. Jones
William Henry Hoyt, ed., The Papers of Archibald D Murphey, 2 volumes (1914)
Mrs. J.G. Boylin, “Anson County,” North Carolina Booklet (April 1914): 214-224
Bill Sharpe, A New Geography of North Carolina, Volume III (1961)
Herbert Snipes Turner, The Dreamer: Archibald DeBow Murphey (1971)
William S. Powell, ed., Encyclopedia of North Carolina (2006)
Related Themes: C.S.A., Confederate States of America, Confederacy
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North Carolina Civil War Historical Markers.

Sneedsborough Historical Marker Location Map, Morven, North Carolina