North Carolina Civil War Sites:
Sightseeing Tours, Plantations, Battlefields, Museums

There were not that many Ante-bellum plantations or Civil War battlefields in NC as in other southern states.

Coast

Plantations, Antebellum Mansions & Homes
  • Beaufort
    • Josiah Bell House in Beaufort near Atlantic Beach - Tours of historic Beaufort include the Josiah Bell House, home of a Civil War spy, Confederate and Union graves in the Old Burying ground and St Paul's Church. Also at Beaufort is a colonial village that features stocks and pillars, the old jail house, an old loom and spinning wheel, more.
  • Creswell near Plymouth
    • Somerset Place State Historic Site- - North Carolina's largest plantations, exhibit explains the impact the civil war had on southern plantations and plantation life.
  • Kenansville near Jacksonville
    • Liberty Hall Restoration / Cowan Museum in Kenansville near Jacksonville - 19th century Plantation Home of the Kenan family includes outbuilding, exhibits, and a video presentation. Nearby Cowan Museum features displays of rural North Carolina artifacts including an anvil used in a local arms factory. 
  • Wilmington
    • Bellamy Mansion in Wilmington - Antebellum house was used in 1865 as Union military headquarters following the surrender of Wilmington. Guided tours and exhibitions.
    • Poplar Grove Historic Plantation in Wilmington - Costumed guides lead tours of this antebellum plantation. Period demonstrations and exhibits help visitors learn more about lifestyles of the plantation residents.

 

Museums & Historic Sites

  • Albemarle
    • Museum of the Albemarle in Elizabeth City - The museum features an overview of the Civil War i the Albemarle region. Other exhibits explore slavery and antebellum plantation life
  • Hamilton
    • Fort Branch in Hamilton near Plymouth - Earthen Civil War fort located on the Roanoke River. Protected ram Albemarle construction site and railroad bridge. 7 original cannons are on display.
  • Hatteras Island near Buxton
    • First Provisional Government of the Civil War in Hatteras near Buxton - Part of Dare County Civil War Tail, this site recognizes America's first efforts at reconciliation during the occupation. Granite marker also relates Hatteras Islands response to the capture of Forts Clark and Hatteras by Union Forces.
  • Kingston
    • CSS Neuse State Historic Site in Kingston (near New Bern) - Built to recapture Union held New Bern the ironclad  gunboat CSS Neuse was set afire and sunk to avoid capture after the crew shelled advancing Union cavalry outside Kinston. The Neuse is one of only three recovered Civil War ironclads on display.
  • Morehead City
    • Carteret County Museum of History and Art in Morehead City - features an exhibit on the Civil War as well as a research library that contains extensive sources for genealogy and Civil War research.
  • New Bern
    • New Bern Academy Museum in New Bern -  The New Bern Academy Museum relates the history of New Bern. One gallery focuses on the Civil War in the town and related African American history. Uniforms and other military artifacts are displayed.
  • Manteo - Roanoke Island
    • First Freedmen's Colony (outdoor display) in Manteo - Outside exhibit shows the African American condition in the 1860s and life in what was America's first Freedmen's colony
  • Ocracoke - Outer Banks
    • Ocracoke Preservation Society Museum in Ocracoke - The museum presents an exhibit with artifacts from Confederate Fort Ocracoke (now submerged in adjacent inlet) Other exhibits deal with the community's lifestyle, maritime past and unique dialect.
  • Plymouth
    • Port Of Plymouth Civil War Museum in Plymouth -  Informative displays with may artifacts and photographs interpret the Battle of Plymouth, ram Albemarle and the Union occupation of the town.
  • Wilmington
    • Cape Fear Museum in Wilmington - Established in 1898 to house Confederate relics, the museum's exhibits explore the history of Wilmington, blockade running and the Battle of Fort Fisher.
    • Onslow County Museum in Wilmington - Civil War exhibit focuses on Onslow County's role in the coastal region. Features Civil War uniforms, firearms, rosters, letters and other artifacts and a description of the Battle of New River.

 

Battlefields

  • Plymouth
    • Port Of Plymouth Civil War Museum in Plymouth -  Informative displays with may artifacts and photographs interpret the Battle of Plymouth, ram Albemarle and the Union occupation of the town.
  • Rodanthe
    • Battle of Chicamacomico Races in Rodanthe - Outdoor display - part of the Dare county Civil War Trail, the monument at the site commemorates the battle later known as the Chicmacomico Races, a futile attempt by the Confederacy to retake Hatteras Island
  • South Mills near Elizabeth City
    • Dismal Swamp Canal Visitor Center in South Mills near Elizabeth City - The Battle of South Mills was fought to capture control of the Dismal Swamp Canal, an important transportation route.
  • Kinston
    • Wyse Fork Battlefield in Kinston - At Wyse Fork, Confederate troops tried to halt General Schofield's march on Goldsboro. Unable to do more than delay the Union movement the confederates left the area to join the attack at Bentonville.

Forts

  • Atlantic Beach
    • Fort Macon State Park in Atlantic Beach - A casemated seacoast fort built for defense of the Beaufort harbor, Fort Macon was seized by Confederates in 1861 and recaptured by Union forces in April 1862 after a land and sea bombardment. Area open to the public include restored rooms and a museum.
  • Kure Beach - Pleasure Island
    • Fort Fisher State Historic Site in Kure Beach - Fort Fisher protected blockade runners en route to Wilmington with supplies vital to  the Confederate armies. It was the largest of the earthen fortification in the Confederacy, Fell in January 1865. Regular events include Civil War reenactments, costumed interpreters and guided tours.
  • Manteo - Roanoke Island
    • Fort Raleigh National Historic Site in Manteo - Fort Raleigh contains several exhibits on the Civil War and the Freedmen's Colony including original newspaper articles and maps from the Atlantic Campaign. A Collection of reproduction civilian / military clothing and weapons is displayed.
  • Wilmington
    • Fort Anderson State Historic Site  in Brunswick Town in Winnabow near Wilmington - This fort was part of the Cape Fear defenses. After its fall in February 1865, Wilmington and the supply lies to Lee's army came under Union control.

Piedmont

Plantations, Ante-Bellum Mansions & Houses
  • High Point
    • Mendenhall Plantation in High Point - Quaker Home of Richard Mendenhall who actively supported the Abolitionist Movement. View a false bottom wagon used to transport slaves to freedom. 
  • Hillsborough
    • Alexander Dickson House in Hillsborough - Historic home built 1790 served as headquarter for Confederate General Hampton and was where General Johnston prepared surrender papers for General Sherman in April 1865.
  • Salisbury
    • Dr Josephus Hall House in Salisbury - Dr Hall was drafted by the Confederacy to serve as a physician for the Salisbury Confederate prison. In April 1865 his house became headquarters for Union officers under General Stoneman. costumed guides. 

Battlefields

  • Aberdeen
    • Malcolm Blue Farm in Aberdeen - Union General Jordan commandeered the Blue Farm and nearby Bethesda Church for officers use in March 1865. Museum features an extensive exhibit on the Battle of Monroe's Crossroads  
  • Dunn
    • Averasboro Battleground in Dunn - site of General Hardee's delay of General Sherman's left wing to permit massing of Confederates for the Battle of Bentonville battlefield museum, Civil War cemetery and plantation houses. 

Museums & Historical Sites

  • Aberdeen
    • Malcolm Blue Farm in Aberdeen - Union General Jordan commandeered the Blue Farm and nearby Bethesda Church for officers use in March 1865. Museum features an extensive exhibit on the Battle of Monroe's Crossroads  
  • Bentonville
    • Bentonville Battleground State Historic Site in Four Oaks near Fayetteville - last battle fought in North Carolina and the last full scale Confederate offensive. The Harper House on this Battleground site served as a Union field hospital during the battle. 
  • Danbury
    • Moratock Iron Furnace at Danbury - very well preserved remains of a smelting furnace used to produce iron for Confederate Army
  • Durham
    • Bennett Place State Historic Site in Durham - Home of James Bennett who witnessed the largest confederate top surrender of the Civil War when General Johnston met General Sherman on April 26, 1865. 
    • Historic Stagville - Durham - Preservations of African American cultural historic studies, provides insight into plantation life and culture, 18th century house, 1860 barn, and 1850 slave quarters.  
  • Fayetteville
    • Museum of the Cape Fear in Fayetteville - features exhibits on the Civil War, Remains of North Carolina arsenal which produced arms and ammunition for Confederate armies until its destruction by General Sherman. 
  • Goldsboro
    • Wayne County Museum - Goldsboro - Features a Civil War display, General Sherman passed through Wayne County on his way to Raleigh.
  • Greensboro
    • Greensboro Historical Museum in Greensboro  - features over 140 rare weapons, historical prints, paintings and artifacts. Confederate hospital once stood on site. Includes cemetery with graves of Civil War veterans. 
  • Hillsbourough
    • The Burwell School Historic Site in Hillsborough - examines antebellum Hillsborough and the impact the Civil War had on the Burwell family, slaves and the students who attended the Burwell's School for Young Ladies. 
    • Orange County Historical Museum - features the area's Civil War history including information about the Orange Guard Company and Various artifacts, letters and pictures.
  • Newton near Marion
    • The Catawba County Museum of History in Newton near Marion & Hickory - features a Civil War exhibit which includes Coolonel Clinton Cilley Collection of Confederate and Union artifacts. General Stoneman's troops passed through Catawba county. 
  • Raleigh
    • North Carolina State Capitol in Raleigh - North Carolina's participation in the Civil War began with a vote to secede in the House Chamber. A single message launched from the roof announced the end of the war. Union troops occupied the ground during 1865. 
    • North Carolina Museum of History in Raleigh - features a major Civil War exhibit showcasing personal belongings, photos, military items and account of North Carolinians who fought in the Civil War. 
  • Salisbury
    • Salisbury National Cemetery & Confederate Prison Camp Site in Salisbury - The cemetery has mass graves containing 11700 unknown soldiers buried in 18 trenches marked by head and foot stones. The graves are adjacent to the former site of a infamous Confederate POW camp.
  • Warsaw
    • Duplin County Veterans Memorial Museum in Warsaw - highlights the role the area played in the Civil War. Features military artifacts and memorabilia.  

Mountains

Museums, Historic sites and markers
  • Asheville through Mt. Airy
    • Stoneman's Raid - Highway markers along route taken by Pocket Raids by Union troops led by General Stoneman that went through the Asheville area, the NC mountains, up through Mt. Airy area around the Blue Ridge Parkway
  • Cherokee
    • Museum of the Cherokee Indian in Cherokee - Special section chronicles Thomas' Legion a Civil War regiment composed partly of Cherokee Indians. This unit fired the last shots of the war in NC. 
  • Weaverville
    • Zebulon Vance Birthplace State Historic Site - Weaverville - Reconstructed 1830's mountain birthplace of Zebulon Vance Civil War Governor.