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Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
Commemorative Landscapes of North Carolina
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  • Monument Name

    General John Willis Plaque, Lumberton

  • Type

    Plaque

  • Subjects

    Historic Civic Figures

    Revolutionary War, 1775-1783

    Local History

    Historic Political Figures

    Historic Military Figures

  • Creator

    Southern Marble Works, Builder

  • City

    Lumberton

  • County

    Robeson

  • Description

    The memorial plaque is an irregular shaped slab of granite approximate three feet high and two feet wide. It is attached to a brick wall in a small brick paved courtyard behind the Robeson County Courthouse.

    Images: Courtyard with the War Memorial and other markers

  • Inscription

    BRIGADIER GENERAL JOHN WILLIS / FOURTH BRIGADE, NC MILITIA / BORN HERE BEFORE 1759 / DIED APRIL 22, 1802

  • Custodian

    Robeson County

  • Dedication Date

    November 11, 1951

  • Decade

    1950s

  • Geographic Coordinates

    34.620200 , -79.007840 View in Geobrowsemap pin

  • Supporting Sources

      "Robeson County Court House, Lumberton, N.C." Durwood Barbour Collection of North Carolina Postcards (P077), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill Link

      “John Willis,” StoppingPoints.com, (accessed January 28, 2016) Link

      “Marker To Honor Robeson, Willis,” The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), November 9, 1951, 11

      “Markers Unveiled In Honor To Two County Patriots,” The Robesonian (Lumberton, NC), November 9, 1951, 1, 4

  • Public Site

    Yes

  • Materials & Techniques

    Granite

  • Sponsors

    Colonel Thomas Robeson Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution

  • Monument Dedication and Unveiling

    Judge L.R. Varser was the featured speaker on a day that also saw dedication of a plaque to Colonel Thomas Robeson for whom the county was named. Varser said that Willis “espoused American principles and was successful advocate for justice” and having joined the patriot cause in the Revolution fought with “distinction and vigor.” He praised Robeson who “was one of the most distinguished sons of the Cape Fear, brave and ever true to his word.” The plaques were presented by Mrs. F.K. Briggs and unveiled by Nancy Ellen Jones and James M. Robeson, Jr., descendants of General Willis and Colonel Robeson.

  • Location

    The General John Willis plaque is in a courtyard behind the Robeson County Courthouse that is located at 500 N. Elm Street, Lumberton. The courtyard occupies the corner of N. Court Square Street and N. Chestnut Street. This courtyard contains the Robeson County War Memorial and plaques to Colonel Thomas Robeson, George Washington Tree, and George G. McPhail, Jr. Also behind the courthouse to the left of the courtyard is an Appalachian Indian Road (Boone Trail Highway) plaque attached to a large arrowhead.
    In front of the Courthouse is the Confederate Monument.
    A 1939 bronze plaque to Robeson County War Dead is located inside the courthouse. It replaced a wooden painted tablet placed in March 1919.

  • Landscape

    The paved courtyard with the memorial and plaques is surrounded by bushes and trees.

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