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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Wechter, Nell Carolyn Wise

by William S. Powell, 1996

6 Aug. 1913–20 June 1989

Nell Wechter. Image courtesy of UNC Press. Nell Carolyn Wise Wechter, teacher and writer, was born at Stumpy Point, Dare County, the daughter of Enoch Raymond, a fisherman, and Edith Casey Best Wise. She was graduated from East Carolina College in 1951 and received a master's degree from both her alma mater and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. From 1933 until her retirement in 1964 she taught in the public schools of the state.

A free-lance feature writer for North Carolina newspapers between 1943 and 1968, she also was associate editor of the Hyde County Herald at Swan Quarter during the period 1948–50. In 1972 she taught creative writing and English at the College of the Albemarle in Elizabeth City. Her first novel, The Romance of Juniper River, appeared in 1937. She wrote for young people as well as adults, notably Taffy of Torpedo Junction (1957), Betsy Dowdy's Ride (1960), and The Mighty Midgetts of Chicamcomico (1974). Mrs. Wechter won numerous awards for her books, including those offered by the American Association of University Women and the Catholic Children's Book Club of America.

In 1943 she married Robert William Wechter, of Madison, Wis., a naval officer stationed on North Carolina's Outer Banks. They were the parents of a daughter, Marcia. Mrs. Wechter was a member of the Methodist church.


Contemporary Authors, vol. 57–60 (1976).

Greensboro News and Record, 22 June 1989.

William S. Powell, ed., North Carolina Lives (1962).

Raleigh News and Observer, 21, 27 June 1989.

Additional Resources:

Nell Wise Wechter Papers (Manuscript Collection #177). East Carolina University:

Nell Carolyn Wise Wechter in the NC Literary Map:

Nell Carolyn Wise Wechter in WorldCat:

Image Credits:

Nell Wechter. Image courtesy of UNC Press. Available from (accessed August 8, 2013).

Origin - location: