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Pamlico River
Beaufort County, NC

The waterfront of Washington looks nothing like it did when it was a working port on the Pamlico River. Then it was a boisterous place like most working waterfronts. There were gristmills and sawmills, warehouses and shipyards, fish and oyster packing plants, bars and brothels. It wasn’t a fit place for children during the day and for reputable adults at night.

It was a dirty place that smelled of fish gurry and spilled fuel oil that had seeped into the ground and turned it black, where the ground could be seen at all. There were languages and accents from around the world spoken by stevedores and fishermen and ships’ crew. And there were more than a few fights where hard lives ended suddenly.

The waterfront looks much different now than then. Pleasure boats line the wharf and transient sailboats anchor where there were once working schooners. The serious brick buildings that were once warehouses are now painted in bright pastels that house restaurants, art galleries, and artisans’ shops. Still, Washington remains a town that remembers its history.


Print Quality

Our archival quality images are printed on Moab Exhibition paper using Canon Lucia inks, providing lustrous reproducttions with a board color gamut that resists aging. For more information on the technology used, see our page on print quality.

The images on this site have been highly compressed to speed page loading. Some artifacts from the process may be visible but the image files used for printing are high resolution.

Sound Rivers

Five percent of the profits from all sales on this site are donated to Sound Rivers, a non-profit organization dedicated to defending the quality of rivers on the Carolina coastal plain.


Washington, NC tired of having its waterfront burned down – first during the Civil War and again in 1900 – so they rebuilt in dour brick but provided relief with bright pastel paints.

Additional information

Weight N/A
Dimensions N/A

18" x 12", 24" x 16", 30" x 20", 36" x 24"


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