Whynot, North Carolina

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Whynot, North Carolina
Unincorporated community
Whynot sign
Whynot sign
Whynot, North Carolina is located in North Carolina
Whynot, North Carolina
Location of Whynot in North Carolina
Coordinates: 35°42′55″N 79°48′47″W / 35.71528°N 79.81306°W / 35.71528; -79.81306Coordinates: 35°42′55″N 79°48′47″W / 35.71528°N 79.81306°W / 35.71528; -79.81306
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Randolph
Elevation[1] 604 ft (184 m)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Zip code 27341
Area code(s) 336
GNIS feature ID 1016647[1]

Whynot, North Carolina is an unincorporated community in Randolph County, North Carolina, United States, and is included in the Piedmont Triad metropolitan region.[2] Whynot is located on NC 705, also known as the "North Carolina Pottery Highway",[3] one mile southeast of Seagrove and seven miles west of Jugtown Pottery, a historic pottery listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[4] The North Carolina Pottery Highway contains over 100 potteries and galleries in a 15-square mile (30 km²) region surrounding Seagrove.[5]

Whynot was first settled in the 18th century by German and English people, along with the nearby communities of Steeds, Sophia, Erect, Hemp, and Lonely.[6] The origin of the name came from residents debating a title for their community. A man asked "Why not name the town Whynot and let's go home?"[7][8][9] The community was originally spelled with two separate words, "Why Not".[10] Area residents first began making pottery in the 18th century.[11] The Why Not Academy and Business Institute, a combination public and private school, was located in the community from 1893 to 1916.[12][13] Whynot has frequently been noted on lists of unusual place names.[14][15]

Whynot is home to several Seagrove area pottery shops including Dirtworks Pottery, Tom Gray Pottery, Dixieland Pottery, Marsh Pottery, Kovack Pottery, Michele Hastings & Jeff Brown Pottery, and Whynot Pottery.[6][16]


The current Fairgrove Methodist Church was once home to Whynot Wesleyan Church. It is now the meeting place of the Whynot Memorial Association. A grave yard sets just across the road from the church and is the resting place of many former residents.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Whynot, North Carolina. Retrieved on 2008-06-18.
  2. ^ Ridpath, John (1897). "The Standard American Encyclopedia of Arts, Sciences, History, Biography, Geography, Statistics, and General Knowledge". Encyclopedia Publishing Company, Harvard University. p. 3287. 
  3. ^ Cissna, Bill (2005-05-15). "Follow 'Pottery Highway' into Carolina haven steeped in clay". The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  4. ^ "North Carolina - Moore County". nationalregisterofhistoricalplaces.com. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  5. ^ "Seagrove, NC- The Little Town That Could". Carolina Arts. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  6. ^ a b Brown, Charlotte (2006). The Remarkable Potters of Seagrove: The Folk Pottery of a Legendary. Sterling Publishing. p. 13. ISBN 1-57990-634-6. 
  7. ^ Sharpe, Bill (1954). "A New Geography of North Carolina". Sharpe Publishing Company, University of Michigan. p. 1036. 
  8. ^ Kuralt, Charles (1985). On the road with Charles Kuralt. Putnam. p. 181. ISBN 0-399-13087-X. 
  9. ^ Leslie, Bill (2008-02-19). "Wrath of Lizard Lick". WRAL. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  10. ^ "North Carolina State Archives - Postal History Project". North Carolina Office of Archives and History. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  11. ^ Ruhlman, Michael (1985-12-15). "Shopper's World - Carolina Pottery, Shaped By Tradition". The New York Times. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  12. ^ "Inventory of the Auman Family Papers, 1795-2004 - Collection Number 4401". University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  13. ^ Patterson, Homer (1916). "Patterson's American education". Educational Directories, New York Public Library. p. 579. 
  14. ^ Parker, Quentin (2010). Welcome to Horneytown, North Carolina, Population: 15: An insider's guide to 201 of the world's weirdest and wildest places. Adams Media. pp. xii. 
  15. ^ Petras, Kathryn; Petras, Ross (18 December 2007). Unusually Stupid Americans: A Compendium of All-American Stupidity. Random House Publishing Group. p. 246. ISBN 978-0-307-41761-9. 
  16. ^ Lancaster, H Martin (2004-11-04). "Making It New In Community Colleges". North Carolina Community College System. Archived from the original on 2008-06-13. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Why Not, North Carolina, by William T. Auman and Minnie S. Stuart, Why Not Memorial Association, 1986.