Dr. Francis Stringer (d. 1753)
Lenoir County, North Carolina

Kinston - 200 Year Anniversary

One of the most prominent settlers in the area now known as Lenoir County was Dr. Francis Stringer. A native of Virginia, he was the son of Dr. Thomas and Mary Stringer. His great-grandfather was Dr. John Stringer who was prominent in the affairs of Accomac and Northampton County in Virginia until his death in 1655.

Dr. Stringer came to the area in 1737 and began operating a ferry across the Neuse River, some two miles east of present-day Kinston. He was undoubtedly the first physician to practice medicine in this remote frontier. In those days, the practice of medicine was passed down from generation to generation and Dr. Stringer was of the fourth generation of doctors in the Stringer family. Dr. Stringer was also a justice of the peace and served a number of terms in the General Assembly.

He was married to the former Hannah Shine (sometimes Susannah), the sister of John and Daniel Shine. They had a daughter, Elizabeth. Dr. Stringer left a will probated in 1753. His wife left a will probated in 1784.

Perhaps because he was a physician and could be consulted by travelers, his ferry became the most popular river crossing in the region, serving land traffic from all directions. Two other ferries were operated on the Neuse, one by Abraham Taylor and the other by John Irons. [Image: Craven County Minutes, County Court, June 1730-Apr 1741, Part 1]

Dr. Stringer's home was a popular meeting place of the day whenever official business affecting settlers was to be discussed. In 1746 such business was at hand.

December 20, 1739 - Doctr. Francis Stringer prays an Order to keep ferry on the north Side of Neuse River three mile above Stony Town Creek the same granted. Capt. Danll. Shine & Majr. Linnington became Secur. for the sd Stringer in the sum of two hundred pounds curr money. Craven Precinct-County North Carolina Court Minutes, 1730-1741, Book II by Weynette Parks Hann - [Image: Craven County Minutes, County Court, June 1730-Apr 1741, Part 1]

Stringer Land Grants

Land Grants in Tower Hill Area

George Stringer Jr., No. 2355, Grant No. 318, 250a, issued 16 Nov 1764
Book 17, page 143 - on the Flat swamp

George Stringer, Jr., No. 2605, Grant No. 318, 250a, issued 16 Nov 1764
Book 18, page 128 - on the Flat Swamp