Landmarks and Legacies Mural

Landmarks and Legacies Mural

Located at: 105 N. McNeill Street Carthage, NC 28327

Artist: Dan Dreyer

Carthage has always been home to many wonderful people…both those native born and those who chose to make Carthage their home. Landmarks and Legacies celebrates some of those folks and tells the story of Fry and Prickett Funeral Home, the longest continuously operating business in Carthage.

JV Larkin built a two story wooden building here about 1884-1886, opening a drug store and harness shop on the first floor and his embalming room with caskets upstairs. About 1919 Larkin sold the business to RG Fry, Sr. who was elected sheriff in 1922. The funeral business became a sideline until his son, RG Fry, Jr. graduated from Gupton-Jones Embalming School in 1937 and joined the business.

In 1941 the building burned and the Frys built a new building on McNeill Street. Mr. Fry Sr. died in 1945, leaving the business to his son.  On June 1, 1957 RG Fry, Jr. sold the business to T.T. “Tommy” Prickett , a licensed funeral director and embalmer, and RG Fry and Son Funeral Home became Fry and Prickett Funeral Home.

In 1970, realizing he needed a larger facility, Prickett bought the old Muse house on the corner of Rockingham and Saunders St., renovated and restored it, and moved in on April 18, 1971. Through the years, Tommy was instrumental in many improvements around town. He was a valuable member of the volunteer fire department, Carthage Jaycees, the local rescue squad and most importantly a leader in Carthage United Methodist Church.

In 1990, Robert Nunnaley moved to Carthage to work with Prickett at his funeral home, eventually becoming a partner. Following Tommy’s death in 2017, Robert now owns and operates Fry and Prickett Funeral Home at the 402 Saunders St. location. Our town was indeed lucky when Tommy and later Robert chose to make Carthage their home(s). Luke Marion was a Carthage native who served as mayor from 1963 to 1971. Luke owned Marion Furniture across McNeill street and enjoyed coming across to the Fry and Prickett office for a Coke and a chat. Woodrow Wilhoit was a Carthage native. “Woody” was Carthage editor for the Moore County News next door and then the Pilot newspaper; his column kept Carthage happenings …churches, clubs and community events in the newspapers weekly for many, many years. Woodrow’s sports reporter beat for both papers also kept Union Pines High School sports teams in the news; their high school stadium is named in his honor.

Woody never missed a game even though he did not a drivers license; his many friends always made sure he had a ride!  Blanchie Dowdy Carter is another Carthage native. She and her husband, Nathaniel “Coach” Carter, both longtime Moore County educators, have influenced the lives of countless students. The Carter’s received the United Way Cornerstone Award in 2014 and were awarded North Carolina’s Order of the Longleaf Pine in 2019…for their many years of dedicated volunteer service in addition to their individual 30 plus years in our public schools as teacher(s), coach and principal. The mark an individual leaves on the world represents their legacy and the place represents the landmark.

Fry and Prickett Funeral Home continues the tradition of being “Committed to the families in our Community”. We’re proud to share these Carthage stories.

About the Artist, Dan Dreyer

Daniel Dreyer was born in Houston, Texas. Since then he has lived in 8 different states before finally landing here in beautiful North Carolina. Along the way he attended the Savannah College of Art and Design, where he graduated high honors with a concentration in Painting. While painting there and talking about art, Daniel came to wonder if he was more interested in the human condition itself than painting about it. After graduation, Daniel headed out west to work as a survival guide and rehabilitation counselor in the high sierra Moab Desert in Utah. There he learned to survive in the desert, bust fire with natural materials, and discuss our deepest concerns in groups with rehabilitating drug addicts. Responding to the 2008 market crash,  Daniel moved back east in search of work and landed at Ebner Camps as a counselor. He eventually worked his way up to Creative Director, working on signage, videography, painting and game design along the way. It was there that he met his beautiful wife, Samantha. Today, Daniel is gratefully employed by Moore County as the Convention and Visitors Bureau’s “Destination Storyteller”. He enjoys Moore County very much and hopes never to leave. At least not while he raises his son, Otto James Dreyer. Among other artful accomplishments, Dab has painted one of the many murals in Carthage and a horse as part of the annual Painted Ponies Program to support Carolina Horse Park. He relishes the opportunity to share his love of stories, storytelling and art and he sincerely hopes you enjoy his work.

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