Free People of Color, Land, North Carolina, Photographs

Napoleon Hagans’ house.


Around the time he testified before the US Senate, Napoleon Hagans had this house built below the south bank of Aycock Swamp, near Fremont in northern Wayne County. It remains occupied and is featured in J. Daniel Pezzoni and Penne Smith’s Glimpses of Wayne County, North Carolina: An Architectural History (1998):

“The house, a single-pile center-hall-plan dwelling, has retained much of its charming original hip-roofed front porch, now supported by replacement square columns. Windows are surmounted by moulded peaked arch surrounds. … One original single-shouldered exterior end chimney was plastered; the other was replaced by a concrete-block flue. …”

A stone monument marking the graves of Napoleon and his wife Apsilla Ward Hagans stands in a cornfield about one hundred yards west of the house.

Photo by Lisa Y. Henderson, December 2010.