Local History Research

Be sure to check out our Shop page for a selected list of books about local history, primary sources from historical residents of Hoke & Robeson county, and even a cookbook! We do not offer online shipping, but you can purchase items during open houses & events. 

Highland Scottish Settlers in NC

Historical Perspective

In 1739, Gabriel Johnston, royal governor of North Carolina and native Scotsman, encouraged 360 Highland Scots to settle in North Carolina and later provided them a ten-year tax exemption for doing so.  Subsequent offers by Johnston attracted Highland Scots to North Carolina primarily for economic and political reasons, for in Scotland, they had difficulties paying the increasing land rents and had experienced defeat against the English at the Battle of Culloden in 1745.  Also, the Highland evictions, beginning in the 1700s and continuing to the 1800s, forced many Scots to give up their land so that sheep could be raised.  Many chose therefore to settle mainly in North Carolina, yet many sailed to New York, New Jersey, Georgia, and Canada.  

The Mill Prong House

Carolina Scots and the Settlement of the Old Southwest


What makes the Mill Prong House, situated in Hoke County (formerly Robeson County), North Carolina, a significant historical site? Is it the house’s one-of-a-kind architecture? Not really, although the evolution of architectural styles is clearly demonstrated in its modification over time. How about the unique insights the house and nearby cemetery provide into plantation life in the American South during the Early National Period? Again, no. What great Revolutionary War events were planned in this house? None, whatsoever, considering the house was not built until 1795. One might be forgiven for assuming that the Mill Prong House is of nothing more than local historical significance; that assumption would be in error.