Captain’s Cargo is a unique gift boutique located in the brick post office building commissioned and dedicated in 1967; the boxes and memorabilia are from an earlier post office built on the property in 1953. Elizabeth Howard, the owner’s mother was the postmaster in both buildings. Betty, along with her daughters, granddaughters, and cousins spent their summers playing and working on the property and in the buildings.
Betty’s great grandfather Captain Horatio Williams was the inspiration for Cargo’s name. In the mid 1800’s Captain Horatio maintained his livelihood by sailing the schooner “Paragon “ to ports on the east coast and the West Indies transporting cargo back and forth. Legend has him sailing out of Charleston Harbor while Ft Sumter was being bombarded in order to save his boat and livelihood. He sailed back to North Carolina, past Ocracoke Island and up the Roanoke River to fresh water where he scuttled (sunk) his boat for safekeeping. The sails were buried on shore and the crew made their way back to the island.
When the war was over, the “Paragon” was raised with pontoon barrels, the sails were dug up and she returned to the sea continuing to transport cargo. Captain Horatio is the ancestor of many island residents and his legendary story and picture have been published in several books.
We welcome you to stop by, visit and check out the vintage post office boxes along with the delightful array of coastal and nautical cargo found inside. You may even find some treasures among the bounty.