Bob Jenkins, a native of Sneads Ferry, spent much of his early life in Wilmington, before going off to study interior design. When he returned to Wilmington in the late 1960s, he found the downtown area had become seedy and catered to a coarse trade. Families had moved out, and many of the old historic homes were decaying or being torn down. Jenkins became a pioneer when he opened a design shop near the riverfront and purchased one of the historic homes nearby. Fortunately, he found other like-minded individuals who cared about revitalizing downtown and preserving historic buildings. Today more than three hundred blocks of downtown Wilmington are on the National Register of Historic Places, and the town is mentioned in the same breath as Savannah and Charleston. Jenkins retired in 1989, and is the owner and sole employee of Wilmington's Adventure and Walking Tours.