VOL. XXXXV1II NO. 9 USPS 162-860 KENANSV1LLE, NC 28349 FEBRUARY 28. 1985 16 PAGES THIS WEEK 10 CENTS PLUS TAX
Region May Become
Nation's Turkey Capital
Southeastern North Carolina will
soon become the nation's biggest
\ turkey-producting area, says
William Prestage of Clinton, owner
of Prestage Farms, which produces
swine and turkeys.
Several producers, including
Prestage, also predict a large in
crease in swine production in the
region and state.
Current building and future con
struction plans will sharply increase
poultry and swine processing capa
| Southeastern North Carolina last
year produced about 18 million to 20
million turkeys. The turkeys are
grown by farmers under contractsJ
with feed companies and processors,
who are called program operators.
The region also produces millions
of broiler chickens every year.
Duplin County ? the leading
poultry-producing county in the
nation ? grossed about $112 million
from poultry and poultry products in
1983. Turkeys accounted for nearly
t half the total.
By doubling the size of its hog
processing operations, Lundy Pack
ing Co. of Clinton will become one of
the largest plants of its kind in the
nation. When complete, the plant
will be able to process 3 million hogs
a year, said Lou Fetterman, company
president. That equals 8,219 hogs a
Ten years ago the state's annual
hog production was about 3 million.
| Lundy opened in 1950 and processed
15,434 hogs in its first year. By 1960,
the firm was slaughtering 1.5 million
hogs a year.
The Lundy expansion is coming at
a time of rapid change and reorgani
zation among the meat packers and
packing plants of the Midwest. The
industry is moving from the old
'fart! \, - ?
centers such as Chicago to the
livestock production centers. This
also applies to poultry processing.
Plans are being developed by
Carroll's Foods of Warsaw and
Goldsboro Milling Co. of Goldsboro
for an $18 million turkey processing
plant in Duplin County. David Bray
of Wallace, retired manager of the
Swift & Co. turkev processing plant
at Wallace, is consultant and future
general manager of the new plant.
Bray joins Prestage in predicting a
sharp rise in North Carolina's turkey
Sam Finch, manager of the Swift
& Co. turkey plant at Wallace,
believes 1985 should be an excellent
year for turkey producers. He said
theWallace plant "will play a big
part in Swift's future plans. This is
the largest turkey plant Swift has."
Finch expects the plant will
process 5 million to 6 million turkeys
? about 84 million pounds of meat
? this year.
Swift & Co. and the House of
Raeford of Nash Johnson & Sons
Farms are national leaders in de
veloping turkey merchandising to
turn turkey from a Thanksgiving
Christmas specialty into a year
around meal. \
James Norris, Columbus County
livestock extension agent, said many
Columbus County farmers are start
ing hog enterprises, some of them to
replace lost tobacco income. He said
Columbus farmers are operating
their hog businesses independently.
Many Sampson and Duplin hog
growers are contracting with pro
gram operators, a system similar to
that used in broiler and turkey
North Carolina has been the top
turkey-producing state in the nation
for three years. Its 1984 turkey
production was estimated at 30
The state ranks seventh in hog
production, but that ranking is
deceptive because North Carolina's
production is small compared with
that of Iowa, Nebraska and Illinois.
Paced by its huge poultry indus
try, Duplin County has led all North
Carolina counties in gross farm
income for most of two decades.
Joining Duplin County as a major
poultry and swine producer is
Sampson. Swine production has
become a major agricultural field in
Columbus County as well.
The Clown Conspiracy, Joe Killian
and Michael Zerphy, will be per
forming at Charity Middle School on
Monday, March 4 at 1 p.m.
Duplin County Arts Council is
assisting with the plans for the
project which is sponsored by the
Edwin Gill Theater Project.
Killian said, "We're more than
just clowns. Our performance blends
the vitality of the European circus
clown the grace of the pantomime,
and the depth of the stage actor.
Each performance features classic
clown scenarios, pantomime, juggl
ing and audience involvement. We
have material appropriate for all
ages from children to adults."
Kenansville To Bo Featured In Magazine
i ne town or Nenansvine was pnoiograpnea last week
by Southern Living magazine. The pictures and story
are to appear as a featured small town in the November
edition or prior to that as part of the travel section of the
magazine. Photographed for the story were the Cowan
Museum, Grove Presbyterian Church, the Graham
House Inn and Liberty Hall. Pictured above, left to
ngnt, ioutern Living Assistant Travel Editor James T.
Black and photographer Bruce Roberts at Liberty Hall.
The plantation home. Liberty Hall, was featured in the
recent edition of Southern Accents magazine. The
Southern Accents magazine is based i" Atlanta, Ga.
and features both historic and modern homes along
with cultural events and ai lists
Duplin Asks State To Create Historic Trail
A "historic trail" may be in the
making through Duplin County.
The county commissioners last
week approved a resolution calling
for the state to renumber N.C. 11
through the county to N.C. 903 and
designate it a historical route.
The rood would be renumbered
from the Duplin County line near
Albertson to U.S. 74-76 at Freeman
in Columbus County, according to
the resolution. The change would
affect the road in Pender, Bladen
and Columbus counties.
Secondary Road 1003 west from
N.C. 11 through Magnolia in Duplin
County to Delway in Sampson
County would be renumbered N.C.
11 and improved with the idea of
attracting tourist traffic from Inter
state 40 and other major thorough
fares in the area.
It would form a more direct route
from 1-40 to Kenansville than the
present N.C. 11. N.C. 11 passes
through Kenansville, which has
historic buildings. The route is near
Rockfish Battlefield and Moore's
Creek National Battlefield near
"I don't see how it'd hurt any
thing," Commissioner D.J. Fussell
said of the renumbering proposal.
The board also interviewed
Richard Johnson of Kinston, the first
of several architects scheduled to
present plans for a 12,000-square
fool, $500,000 addition to the
county's social services building.
School Superintendent L.S. Guy
received permission to transfer
$20,000 from contingency funds to
convert five open classrooms to
standard classrooms, and $300 to
complete payment on a service truck.
If teachers are to be held ac
countable for their students' pro
gress, Guy said, they want to be
individually, not jointly responsible.
In open classrooms, several teachers
share teaching duties.
The board agreed to pay up to
$10,000 to pave about two blocks of
Duplin Street from N.C. 11 past the <
county jail. The street is lined by
various government buildings.
Kenansville town Commissioner
Earl Hatcber and Steve Drew, 'own
public works commissioner, made
Kenansville plans to pave Semi
nary and Hill streets, but the county
is not involved in those projets, they
A request to fund a "911"
emergency telephone number was
tabled. Hiram Brinson, emergency
services coordinator, asked the com
missioners to fund "911" as the
county emer^ ncy flimk r to ierve
Kenansville, Wallace and Faison.
Under the plan, residents could get
emergency services by dialing the
If ihe service is installed under the
prese-jt telephone system. Warsaw.
Beulaville and Ri>se Hill residents
would have to dial 2% before 911.
Four lines would be included in the
If one line was busy, a second call
jjlf mid*'.- switched to fret i"> The
system w ' mi Id ~ x ?,' about >itib a
month, compared with the present
cost of $564 a month for three special
lines. 1 he proposed service would
increase cost by $1.608 a year.
Third North Facility Open House, Sunday
Duplin General Hospital Modernizes
Efforts to revive Duplin General
Hospital have been successfully
underway for several years. Sunday
the hospital opens a renovated
section of the Lee Brown wing for
private medical/surgical care rooms.
Recognition of Duplin General's
plan to modernize begins at a public
open house for the Third North
facility, March 3, from 3-5 p.m.
Richard Harrell, Duplin General
HospiMl administrator, pointed out
the open house is only for the
renovated Third North floor, not the
The opening of the Third North
section of the hospital is part of
Duplin General's plan to upgrade
medical care and facilities, Harrell
said; The area was originally de
signed for medical/surgical care
rooms bui used as office space and a
small in-patient psychiatric unit.
The modernization of Duplin
General Hospital not only provides
private rooms for patients, but
upgrades the telephone and tele
vision systems. The hi>spital cur
rently averages a 55 percent occu
pancy rale and. Harrell pointed out,
the modernization project results
from the demand for in-room tele
phone and television service as well
as private rooms by the citizens in
"We feel there is a demand for
privaie rooms and in-room telephone
services," Harrell said. "Many
limes ihese factors enter into the
choice if coming to Duplin General
or going into another hospital with
those services available.
"The existing telephone system is
ou'dated and has such limited
capacity that less than 50 percent of
our patient rooms have telephone
service," Harrell said. "With the
c mpletion if this project, 74 percent
of our beds will be housed in modern
and attractive facilities as compared
to the existing 43 percent, and all
pa'icnt rooms will have telephone
The cost of building facilties equal
to ihe renovation ??f the existing third
n>T'h fl???-r would amount to more
than $1 million. Harrcll explained.
The reorganization of locations for
the existing small in-patient psy
chia'ric unit and the medical/sur
gical rooms makes the best use of
existing facilities, a< a faction of new
construction'costs, he said.
"The Third North floor was con
s ructcd to provide 25 private rooms
for general medical/surgical care
and is identical in design to our
existing Second North floor which
since construction has been used
c n'inuously as a medical/surgical
facility," Harrell said.
"The Third North floor, until just
recently, hi>uscd the area Mental
Health Agency and a small in-patient
psychiatric unit." Currently the
sec nd floors of the original hospital
building and the Lee Brown addition
serve as the medical'surgical patient
facility. The modernization will move
all medical/surgical patient rooms,
exeep' maternity, into the Lee
Br wn wing of Duplin General
H -spital. The Lee Brown wing was
? pened in 1971. The in-patient
psychiatric unit is to be housed on a
p rtion of the second floor vacated
by medical/surgical patient services.
Duplin General will have 67 private
pa ient rooms in the medical/
According to Harrell, moderni
zai i >n plans will continue in the
fu ure at Duplin General Hospital.
The maternity floor is the next step
in renovation and modernization.
Harrell said the third floor, maternity
patient rooms would be renovated to
include private bath facilities and
in-room phone service. Approxi
mately 350 babies are expected to be
born at Duplin General Hospital this
Even with the expansion of the
maternity ward and use of part of the
original hospital area as a . in
patient psychiatric unit, space will
still be unused. Harrell said the
hospital plans to utilize the unused
rooms on the second and third floors
opposite the maternity ward and
psychiatric unit for long term health
care beds. The hospital is currently
in the process of being licensed to
provide long-term health care.
"There is a need for long-term
care beds in Duplin," Harrell said,
"And, a medical facility Tike tnts
hospital with available space, the
transition would be only logical." If
licensed. Duplin General would pro
vide up to 30 long-term health care
Duplin Gonoral Hospital Ronovatos Floor
Renovation of Third North floor of the Lee Brown wing
of Duplin General opens 25 surgical/medical patient
rooms al the hospital. The floor had formerly been
occupied by Duplin-Sampson Area Mental Health
offices, but was constructed in 1971 to be used for
patient rooms. After 13 years of use as office space,
communications and medical support systems in each
room were reconditioned and along with new paint and
furniture, the rooms were made ready by the hospital
maintenance staff for use as surgical/medical patient
???' iv'/' ' ?' ?JL.
rooms. According to Duplin General Hospital Adminis
trator Richard Harrell, the floor will be open to the
public Sunday from 3 until 5 p.m. The Lee Brown wing
will now house all surgical/medical patient rooms,
except maternity, on the second and third floors. The
hospital had been using Second North floor and Second
South floor of the original hospital as surgical/medical
patient rooms. Pictured, left, is a newly-furnished room
on Third North floor, and, above, a patient room in the
south wing of the hospital.