Indigenous women, Lumbee

‘An attack on our people:’ North Carolina’s missing and murdered Indigenous women

When Lisa Hardin didn’t return to her southeastern North Carolina home in the summer of 2003, her mother knew something was wrong.  Days later, police found the body of 36-year-old Hardin in the woods on the east side of Lumberton in Robeson County. Her orange Harley Davidson T-shirt was pulled over her chest, and her underwear was twisted around her right ankle. She had been …Read more Continue reading ‘An attack on our people:’ North Carolina’s missing and murdered Indigenous women

The Lumber is one of five ‘Wild and Scenic’ rivers in North Carolina

Editor’s note. This is the third of a three-part series on the Lumber River and its potential as an eco-tourism destination. Even though the Lumber River is one of only five rivers in North Carolina designated as “Wild and Scenic” by Congress, the meandering waterway sees limited use except for locals who were raised on it. The Lumber River runs 115 miles from its headwaters …Read more Continue reading The Lumber is one of five ‘Wild and Scenic’ rivers in North Carolina

International Paper

Howard: Internet access a barrier for Columbus development

This is the second installment of a series about economic development in the Border Belt, which encompasses Bladen, Columbus, Robeson and Scotland counties.  For years, Jeff Howard watched eastern Columbus County struggle to create opportunities for people because of poor internet access. The pandemic has made it even worse.  “When you go from just a few people needing internet access to everyone needing it, that’s …Read more Continue reading Howard: Internet access a barrier for Columbus development

Workforce is key to capitalizing on agribusiness and population growth in Columbus

Editor’s note: This is the second in a series of stories that provides an overview of the economies of Bladen, Columbus, Robeson, and Scotland counties in southeastern North Carolina. The 954 square miles of vast farmland and forests have shaped Columbus County’s economy for generations.  “We can grow anything,” said Columbus County Economic Development Director Gary Lanier. “Because of our farming heritage, we also have …Read more Continue reading Workforce is key to capitalizing on agribusiness and population growth in Columbus

Ivey Schofield

Writer profile: Ivey Schofield

Today the Border Belt Independent highlights staff writer Ivey Schofield, who majored in languages but has found her calling in journalism. She splits her time between The News Reporter in Whiteville and the BBI. Q. Tell us a little about yourself.     I grew up in a small town in South Carolina called Eastover. After graduating high school, I moved almost 1,000 miles away to …Read more Continue reading Writer profile: Ivey Schofield

Maxton greenhouse lettuce

UNCP hub builds the business of farming

Ellery Locklear started selling watermelons in high school. He got an old tractor running and used an acre of his family’s land to create a business for himself — hawking the summer fruits from the back of his pickup truck. Since then, Locklear, now 41, has grown his Pembroke farming business to 100 acres and six greenhouses. He still grows watermelons – strawberries provide his …Read more Continue reading UNCP hub builds the business of farming

Ray with Todd Bryant

The Lumber River defines wilderness and serenity for those who love it

Editor’s note: This is the second of a three-part series that features the Lumber River. Part I covered ecotourism possibilities for Lumber River State Park and Fair Bluff. In this story, Publisher Les High talks with Fair Bluff residents who frequent the river. For the people of Fair Bluff, love of the Lumber River comes naturally. The Rev. Ray Lundy, pastor at Fair Bluff Baptist …Read more Continue reading The Lumber River defines wilderness and serenity for those who love it

Kim Smith - Columbus County Health Department

Columbus health department funding has plummeted over last decade

This is the first in a series of several stories that will analyze funding and spending of health departments across the Border Belt. For more than a decade, Columbus County women have had fewer and fewer affordable options for breast and cervical cancer screening, according to Elizabeth Kinlaw, an adult health nurse for the Columbus County Health Department. “There’s no help for them,” Kinlaw said.  …Read more Continue reading Columbus health department funding has plummeted over last decade