As residents of Durham, nature fans and music listeners may already know, the annual Festival for the Eno is quickly approaching. And while the Eno River Association has several past and present posters available, our latest batch of materials from our partner, the Durham County Library, includes some of the older vintages.
This poster, from the 1982 festival, features an alert river otter, a species found across the state of North Carolina. While sightings of otters are usually rare (they tend to be secretive and their total population is somewhat low), they are playful animals.
In the 1990s, according to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, there was an effort to re-expand the territory of river otters into the western part of the state, where they were seen in the 1930s. To do this, the NC Wildlife Resource Commission trapped and relocated several to western river systems. They also brought several otters to West Virginia, which was trying to restore its otter population.
The wild turkey is also a native North Carolinian, but the population declined quickly in the early 1900s due to overhunting and habitat loss. In 1985 (during restoration efforts), the total population was estimated at 14,000; in 2020, it was estimated that our state was home to 270,000 turkeys. Today, turkeys are classified as “Big Game,” and their hunting season is strictly limited.
Other posters from the earlier years of the Festival for the Eno feature fish, people in costumes, and other landscapes. Some of the informational posters have lists of performers and activities as well.
You can see the full batch of maps and posters from the Durham County Library here. To find out more about them, you can visit their partner page or their website. The 43rd Annual Festival for the Eno will be held on July 2 and 4, 2022 in Durham, N.C.