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Reedy Creek State Park


By Kelly Agan, N.C. Government & Heritage Library, 2016


Established: 1950

GPS Coordinates: 35.833731, -78.760208

Size: 1,234 acres
Boyscouts learning about native plants and animals at Crabtree Creek or Reedy Creek State Park, ca. 1940s to 1950s. Crabtree Creek had two park entrances during segregation. In 1950, the southern entrance at Reedy Creek and its surrounding 1,234 acres were split into a separate state park exclusively for African Americans. North Carolina State Parks Collection, NC Digital Collections.


See also: Exploring North Carolina: North Carolina State Parks, Trails, Lakes, Rivers & Natural AreasCrabtree Creek State Park; William B. Umstead State Park; Segregation


 


Today Reedy Creek State Park is part of the William B. Umstead State Park. The existence of two separate entrances to the park are the remnants of the park's history during racial segregation.


The park was created on April 24, 1950 with 1,234 acres from the southern end of Crabtree Creek State Park. And although it was designated at that time as the state's second state park exclusively for use by African Americans, Crabtree Creek State Park had for many years operated with two entrances, one for blacks and one for whites. When Reedy Creek was created, Crabtree Creek became the park for whites. Park brochures would make the segrated distinction until 1965.


In 1955, Crabtree Creek State Park was re-dedicated and renamed for conservation advocate Governor William B. Umstead, and in 1966 the two separate parks were united into one park, William B. Umstead State Park.

References:


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. William B. Umstead State Park Master Plan. 1974. https://archive.org/details/williambumsteads00unse (accessed December 28, 2015)


"State Leads in Acreage Acquired by Rural Resettlement Administration." Gastonia Gazette (Gastonia, N.C.), November 20, 1936. 


North Carolina Department of Conservation and Development. North Carolina Resources. 1952. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p249901coll22/id/80397 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1954. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/215048 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1957. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/215013 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1959. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/215081 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1961. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/214939 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1961. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/214939 (accessed January 19, 2016).


North Carolina Division of Parks and Recreation. North Carolina State Parks [brochure]. 1965. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll9/id/214978 (accessed January 19, 2016).


Image Credits:


[Boyscouts learning about native plants and animals, Crabtree Creek State Park.] Photograph. ca. 1940s. http://digital.ncdcr.gov/cdm/ref/collection/p16062coll27/id/178 (accessed January 19, 2016).

Authors: 
Origin - location: 

Comments

Comment: 

I am the Curator of the Univ of NC at Chapel Hill Herbarium, and I am trying to geolocate (assign latitude/longitude) to a botanical specimen from July 10, 1953 located "along Crabtree Creek below Park Supt's house, Reedy Creek State Park". Would you have a Park map from that era which would show the Superintendent's house... or a current map, for that matter, which would show the structure? Thanks for the informative article about "the tale of two parks"... glad to know we have made Some Progress. One step forward, never step back!

Comment: 

Dear Ms. McCormick,

Thank you for your comment and for visiting NCpedia! What an intrguing project and great question! I am forwarding your inquiry to our library's Reference Team so that they can assist you further. A member of our staff should be reaching out to you via e-mail soon.

Taylor Thompson, Government & Heritage Library

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