Route researched and map drawn by Joe Liles


Click here to view a map of the route of Fish Dam Road. It has a fair degree of detail. For larger maps, significantly more detail (and larger downloads) click here for the map key.

Logo   The Search for Fish Dam Road

Fish Dam Road began as a foot trail in the 1600’s and connected two Indian villages, one on the Neuse River and one on the Eno River. The road remained in prominent use until the 1920's, when parts were abandoned and other parts were incorporated into current-day streets.

Joe Liles, was an art instructor at the NC School of Science and Mathematics  for many decades prior to his retirment in 2008. Joe has become the single most knowledgeable person on Fish Dam Road. In the spring of 2003 he took his students in search of the road. During the spring intensive of 2004 a new group of students under Joe's tutelage began exploring the road.

Read more about their project here.

History of Fish Dam Road

Notes from the field: student search

Interviews with long time residents

Some of the people involved






Joe (on left) points out Fish Dam Road on aerial photos.

We want your stories

If you’re old enough to remember Fish Dam Road, or have family members who do, we want to hear from you. The road began as a foot trail in the 1600s and later connected what is now eastern Durham County to the colonial capital of Hillsborough. It was used heavily until the late1920s, when it was incorporated into other streets. At one time, parts of Carver Street and Highway 70 and all of Cheek Road were known as Fish Dam Road.




Markham Map

In the 1940's Allan Markham put together maps of the area with original land grant information. Read about his map and how it informs the research on Fish Dam Road. Start here.