|A BRIEF CHRONOLOGICAL HISTORY|
...Hyde and Ocracoke
Also see: North Carolina Coastal County Origins|
Hyde County one of the oldest counties in North Carolina, originally included in Bath County. In 1705, Bath County was divided into three precincts, one of them being "Wickham". In 1711, Wickham was changed to "Hyde", in honor of Edward Hyde a moneyless cousin of Queen Anne who was made Colonial Governor of North Carolina.
A fact not generally known, is that Bath, the oldest town in North Carolina and in colonial days the state seat of government, was at one time in the old Hyde precinct. Hyde County's first seat of government was in Woodstock (now in Beaufort County). It was eventually moved to Germantown and then to Lake Landing. In 1836 it was moved to Swan Quarter, its present location.
The county is crisscrossed with canals and ditches that give evidence of the many attempts at drainage of the lowlands and swamplands of the region. The rich, fertile peat soil has attracted various investors throughout the years. One such venture was a drainage operation aimed at converting Lake Mattamuskeet to farmland.
The timber logging industry brought the need for a means of transportation other than the horse or mule. Now nothing more than an overgrown path, the New Holland, Higginsport and Mt. Vernon Railroad once operated in the county.
Blessed with the bounties of nature, this unspoiled region was referred to as the land of the huntsmans delight and also known as the "Canada Goose Hunting Capital of the World". In its heyday, The Lodge at Lake Mattamuskeet hosted hunters from throughout the world. Located in the Atlantic flyway, the county is still the annual migration home for thousands of tundra swan from Alaska, Canada geese, and over 200 species of other waterfowl.