Ayden Collard Festival

Ayden, NC 28513


In the early 1800's, the little community that we know as Ayden, was known as Ottertown . Otter Dennis was a lot of things, but a gentleman he was not. He was known as a mean and ruthless man who loved nothing better than a good fight. Because of his frequent encounters with the law, Otter Dennis was forced to leave town to avoid being imprisoned.

In the 1870's, as legend has it , our community got its name from its reputation. The community was known at that time as Aden, because every criminal misfit and cut-throat who had been banned from or run out of another area came and settled here. We were known as a den of corruption. At that time, the town was located about a mile and a half west of its present site, or about where Farmer's Funeral Service is now located.

About 1888 or 1889, the railroad came through this area, and its location is the same today as it was then. A man by the name of William Henry Harris laid off streets along the railroad and the town moved from its old site to its present site. At the time our community was started along the railroad, Second Street was the main street. And about this time, the town changed its name to Harrisville, a name that lasted one year.

In 1890, when we were trying to get a post office and be chartered as a town, the name Harrisville was dropped and the old name of Aden was proposed by Alfred Harrington. Congressman Small, who was our representative in Washington at that time, suggested to Mr. Harrington that a "y" be placed after the "A" in Aden to help dignify the name. It was done and in 1891 we were chartered as the Town of Ayden. Ayden has made much progress through the years and bears the title of "A Hometown to Love".

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