In the mid-nineteenth century, John Morehead expressed interest in establishing a port city. He and Silas Webb visited Carteret County to determine whether a large port could be developed. Impressed by the location and potential of Shepard’s Point, Morehead purchased six hundred acres of property. With that property, the Shepard Point Land Company was formed, and on November 11, 1857, the first town lots were sold.
Originally named “Apex” because it was the highest point on the Chatham Railroad line between Richmond, Virginia and Jacksonville, Florida, the town of Apex still exemplifies its motto: “Peak of Good Living.” Although a little over 30,000 people reside there, and many industries have moved to the area, Apex remains a quaint place to live.
Created by the State of North Carolina in 1792 as a planned capital city, the area encompassing present-day Raleigh, North Carolina had a handful of sparse colonial settlements as early as the 1760s. Enterprising landholders named Isaac Hunter and Joel Lane purchased large tracts of farmland in the area. Near their homes, they operated taverns and ordinaries for travelers on the main north-south route, cutting through central North Carolina. Called Wake Crossroads, this primitive outpost initially served as the county seat for Wake County, North Carolina. It was established in 1771 and provided a foundation for Raleigh’s future development twenty years later.