Saturday gala to support Princeville restoration

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TARBORO — A formal-dress fundraiser is planned Saturday at Edgecombe Community College to rebuild the flood-ravaged town of Princeville and preserve its history.

The Princeville Cultural Gala is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the college’s Fleming Building atrium, 2009 W. Wilson St.. WRAL-TV news anchor and reporter Gerald Owens will host the event with state Sen. Erica Smith, D-Northampton.

The gala will feature food, music, art, special guests and a silent auction. Money raised will be used to support the Princeville Historic District site and the community’s rebuilding efforts.

Incorporated in 1885, Princeville is the oldest town in the United States chartered by freed African-Americans. It was founded in the aftermath of the Civil War, as emancipated slaves settled on Freedom Hill and began their new lives.

Two floods devastated the town — the first caused by Hurricane Floyd in 1999 and the second by Hurricane Matthew in 2016.

“Despite these catastrophic events, the resolute residents of Princeville are determined to recover and rebuild their community, create a foundation for its future and preserve the legacy of being the first town chartered by former slaves,” organizers said in a news release.

The 7th-Hour Groove Masters band will perform and formal attire is requested .

Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased at Princeville’s temporary town hall, 3003 N. Main St., Tarboro, or online via the shortened link https://bit.ly/2N3QqcC.