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History of Fish Dam Road


The original foot trail began in the 1600's. onnected two Indian villages, one on the Neuse River and one on the Eno River. When settlers first came to this part of America, they put their horses, mules, and wagons on this trail, and this road connected what is now eastern Durham County to the colonial capital of Hillsborough.  Because the Indian village on the Neuse used the shallow water of the river to make a giant fish trap, this trail/road became known as Fish Dam Road. A settler community called Fish Dam gradually developed in this area.  There was even a Fish Dam post office.

This trail came right through what is now known as Durham. One offshoot of Fish Dam Road continued to carry this name until recently and is now known as Cheek Road. Other modern roads on part of Fish Dam Road are US 70 east of Hillsborough and Carver Street in Durham.

In addition there are many undisturbed remnants of the old road bed in the woods in Durham and Orange Counties. Locating these segments has been a wonderful puzzle for the search team. They have been comparing aerial photos and colonial maps, then slogging through the streams and woods to see for themselves what remains. Using GPS technology to plot their discoveries they are mapping as much of the road as they can find.