Beautifully engraved RARE bond certificate from the Carolina Central Railroad Company
in 1881. This historic document was printed by the American Banknote Company and has an
ornate border around it with a vignette of cattle with a train crossing a bridge in the background. This item is hand signed by the Company’s President ( David Reid Murchison ) and Secretary and is over 135 years old. Shows signs of wear on white edges, not affecting ornate border.
In 1873 the Wilmington, Charlotte and Rutherford Railroad was reorganized as the Carolina Central Railroad. David Reid Murchison (1837-82) was a Wilmington cotton merchant and president of the Carolina Central Railroad.
CAPT. DAVID REID MURCHISON.
In order that future generations should have a correct idea of the life and character of those men who were leaders in business circles and founders of many institutions, the benefit of which they will enjoy in years to come, we have selected for the subject of this mention Capt. David Reid Murchison (deceased). He was born in this state, in Cumberland county, on December 5, 1837, and was the youngest son of Duncan Murchison, who was a man prominent in business circles prior to the war of 1861, having been engaged in the manufacture of cotton goods in the western part of the state and also largely interested in planting. His father was by birth a Scotchman, but became a citizen of the United States about the year 1760 or 1770. Duncan was twice married and was the father of a large family. Three sons were born to his first marriage. The eldest, John R. gave up his life in defense of the cause of the Confederacy. He enlisted early in the war in the Eighth regiment of North Carolina infantry, and by deeds of valor rose to the rank of colonel of his regiment; he was killed at the battle of Cold Harbor, June 6, 1864. The next son, Kenneth M., was born February 18, 1831, and was educated at the University of North Carolina, graduating in 1853. He spent his early life in the vicinity of his home near Fayetteville, and was engaged in business pursuits until the breaking out of the war in 1861, when he joined the Eighth North Carolina infantry, as second lieutenant of a company, and served as such during the early part of the war. This regiment was captured by the Federal forces at Roanoke island, but fortunately he was not with it at the time. After that affair, he returned to Cumberland county, raised a company and enlisted as captain in the Fifty-fourth North Carolina regiment. With this regiment he saw a great deal of active duty in the Virginia campaign and participated in many hard-fought battles. His many gallant acts won for him the love of his regiment and the respect of his superior officers, and he rose rapidly in rank and early became colonel of his regiment. He was taken prisoner of war in 1863 and was held as such until July, 1865.
Prior to the war he was engaged in business in New York with a Mr. Bowman, under the firm name of Bowman & Murchison, but on the secession of his native state from the Union, he disposed of his business in the north, returned home and offered his services in her defense. After the close of hostilities, in 1865, he returned to New York and formed the firm of Murchison & Murry, which also carried on a large business in Wilmington, N. C. That firm existed but a short time, was dissolved in June, 1866, but was succeeded by the firm of Murchison & Co., consisting of David R. Murchison and George W. and John D. Williams, of Wilmington and Fayetteville. The new firm conducted an extensive business, operating three houses, the one in New York being managed by Mr. Murchison. The house at Wilmington was known as Williams & Murchison, and the one at Fayetteville as J. D. Williams & Co., and were conducted by the partners. This extensive business he still controls. Col. Murchison has resided in New York the greater part of his time since the war, but still spends the winter seasons in North Carolina. He has taken an active interest in the city of Wilmington, being largely interested in her, and has lately erected a large hotel (The Orton House) which is a model for beauty and convenience. He is also the owner of the Orton rice plantations, embracing a large body of land near the city of Wilmington, which is one of the most historic spots in North Carolina, having been the site upon which the first St. Philip's church was erected by our forefathers. This has been improved to such an extent until to-day it is one of the most beautiful spots in North Carolina, and is a typical southern home.
The next son, the subject of this mention, received his education at the University of Virginia, after which he spent his early life at his home, near Fayetteville. His first business venture was in 1860, when he became a member of the firm of Eli Murry & Co., doing a general commission business. He continued as a member of that firm until 1861, when he enlisted in the Seventh North Carolina regiment, of the Confederate army. He remained with that command one year, when, on account of failing'health, he was transferred to the Fifty-fourth North Carolina infantry, and assigned to duty. He was soon selected by Mr. Davis as inspector-general of the commissary department for North Carolina, having been appointed to fill those positions on account of his executive ability. He continued to serve in that capacity until the close of the war, after which he connected himself with his brother, Col. K. M. Murchison, and Messrs. G. W. & J. D. Williams. He proved himself to be a business man of much tact and ability, and the great success of the firm was due largely to his energy and foresight. In 1880 he was appointed receiver of the Carolina Central railroad, and soon caused a flurry in business circles by purchasing the entire road. It was predicted by many of his friends that it would result disastrously to him, but in that Capt. Murchison proved himself to be a financier of greater ability than even his most intimate friends supposed. He conducted the affairs of the road successfully for a time, until his rapidly failing health caused him to dispose of his business interests, which he did, to Mr. Robinson, of Baltimore, Md. From that time until his death, on February 22, 1882, he was unable to attend to business, and vainly sought to recover health by means of travel. His death occurred in New York city, while there receiving treatment, and his remains were brought to Wilmington, where they were interred. Mr. Murchison was married Juue 11, 1872, to Miss Lucy Wright, daughter of J. G. Wright, an eminent lawyer. His wife and one child, a daughter, survive him. Capt. Murchison never took any active part in politics, and never sought public honors. He, however, took an active interest in all that tended toward the advancement of the city, and aided it by all the means at his command. By his death, Wilmington lost one of her brightest financiers, and the state a most loyal citizen.
History from the Cyclopedia of Eminent and Representative Men of the Carolinas of 1892, Volume 2