History

Civil War Weekend

Tryon Palace marks the landmark for North Carolina’s first Capitol Building. The Palace was built for Governor Tryon in 1770 and the Capitol was later relocated to Raleigh in 1778.

Besides being the First State Capitol in North Carolina, New Bern is a town full of history. Here are a few of numerous historical events:

  • James Davis opened the First Printing Press in North Carolina
  • Pepsi was invented in New Bern by Caleb Bradham
  • First Public School in North Carolina
  • First Chartered Fire Department in North Carolina
  • New Bern’s Devastating Fire of 1922

The North Carolina History Center is currently offering Virtual Tours until they reopen.

Learn about the 1862 “Battle of New Bern” by visiting New Bern’s Civil War Battlefield located at the entrance of Taberna (off Hwy 70 E). For details, contact New Bern Historical Society, 512 Pollock St., New Bern, 252-638-8558.

New Bern showcases buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places dating back to the 1700s. The Isaac Taylor House was built in 1792 by Isaac Taylor, the great-great-great-grandfather of musicians Livingston and James Taylor. Union troops arrived in New Bern in 1862 and took hold of the house. The occupants withdrew to the third and fourth floors and remained there for the duration of the war, using a basket with bracket-and-pulley system to transport food and supplies. You can still see the device on the south side of the building.

New Bern’s Historical Homes are well worth the visit to New Bern! Why not stay at one of the “Historical” Bed and Breakfast and experience the history yourself!

New Bern’s Historic Landmarks:

  • Tryon Palace Historic Sites and Gardens, 610 Pollock St., New Bern, 252-514-4900 or 800-767-1560
  • Bellair Plantation, 1100 Washington Post Rd., New Bern, 252-637-3913
  • Birthplace of Pepsi, 256 Middle St., New Bern, 252-636-5898
  • Cedar Grove Cemetery, George St., Greenwood Cemetery, Cyprus St., and New Bern Cemetery, New Bern, 252-639-7515
  • Centenary United Methodist Church, 309 New St., New Bern, 252-637-4181
  • Christ Episcopal Church and Cemetery, 320 Pollock St., New Bern, 252-633-2109
  • City Hall, 300 Pollock St., New Bern, 252-636-4000
  • First Baptist Church, 239 Middle St., New Bern, 252-638-5691
  • First Church of Christ, 406 Middle St., New Bern, 252-638-6269
  • First Presbyterian Church, 418 New St., New Bern, 252-637-3270
  • Hebrew Cemetery, National Ave., New Bern
  • Isaac Taylor House, 228 Craven St., New Bern, 252-649-1712
  • New Bern National Cemetery, 1711 National Ave, New Bern, 252-637-2912
  • Saint Cyprian’s Episcopal Church, 604 Johnson St., New Bern, 252-633-3816
  • Saint Paul’s Roman Catholic Church, 510 Middle St., New Bern
  • Saint Peter’s African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, 604 Johnson St., New Bern, 252-633-3816
  • Temple B’Nai Sholem Synagogue, 505 Middle St., New Bern, 252-638-4545

Museums:

  • Attmore-Oliver Civil War House Museum, 510 Pollock St., New Bern, 252-638-8558
  • New Bern Fireman’s Museum, 408 Hancock St., New Bern, 252-636-4087
  • New Bern Academy Museum, located at the corner of New and Hancock Sts.
  • USMC Aviation Exhibit, 201 Tourist Center Drive, Havelock, 252-444-4348

Tours:

  • New Bern Tours and Convention Services, 333 Middle St., New Bern, 252-637-7316 or 800-849-7316
  • Walking Tours, Tryon Palace, Corner of Pollock and George Sts., New Bern, 252-514-4900 or 800-767-1560
  • Self-Guided African American Heritage Tour sponsored by the Craven County Convention and Visitors Center, 252-637-9400
  • Trail of Flames Historical Tour of the Great Fire of 1922, New Bern, 252-288-5716

New Bern’s Historical Resources:

Note: If you notice important historical facts about New Bern that have been left out, please send an Email and they will be added.

Shop Class New Bern

What’s What Around New Bern Weekend Edition — June 24 – 27, 2021

June 24, 2021

Good morning, New Bern Now Readers! Here’s a snapshot of what’s happening in and around town. Pic of the Day: Maurice “Mo” Howland and Gator at Shop Class, DIY Community Workshop, in New Bern, NC Bear Outlook Via National Weather Service Today: Sunny, with a high near 82. Light northeast wind increasing to 5 to 9 mph in the morning. Winds could gust as high as 15 mph. Tonight: A slight chance of showers between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m., then a chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2 a.m. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 67. Northeast wind around 6 […]

Signs of History

Signs of History African American Heritage Trail

June 12, 2021

Some new signs in New Bern may have recently caught your eye. There are 16 sign panels that were installed of late that explain and interpret significant historic events, people and places that pertain to the African American heritage within the greater Craven Terrace/Dryborough neighborhood. You are invited to help dedicate the signs of the African American Heritage Trail on Saturday, June 19th at 10 a.m. at the intersection of Broad and Roundtree Streets in New Bern as part of the Juneteenth commemoration. This ceremony, to which the public is invited, will celebrate the integration of these stories into the […]

North Carolina Symphony

North Carolina Symphony Returns to New Bern with Free Outdoor Concert

June 11, 2021

  Live music has returned in North Carolina—and this month the North Carolina Symphony is thrilled once again to perform free concerts in Chapel Hill and New Bern through the annual Concerts in Your Community series.  The orchestra performs on Tryon Palace’s South Lawn in New Bern (hosted by Tryon Palace and the North Carolina History Center) on Thursday, June 24. At this summer’s free program, NCS Associate Conductor Wesley Schulz will lead the Symphony in music perfect for a fun and relaxing summer night, from the country-inspired “Hoe-Down” from Copland’s Rodeo, to Rossini’s whirlwind overture to the opera The […]

Pollinator Week

Tryon Palace Celebrates Pollinator Week June 21 – 27

June 9, 2021

Tryon Palace and International Paper in celebrating National Pollinator Week, June 21st through 27th. Celebrate bees, butterflies, and pollinator plants throughout the week with special tours, a free movie showing, and informative posters and items to take home.  Learn about our pollinator plants and initiatives in the Tryon Palace gardens and information on how you can help pollinators in your own garden. Pollinator Garden Tours will be offered daily at 10:00 am, beginning at the Waystation, Monday June 21 through Friday, June 25th.  The special tours are available with purchase of any Tryon Palace admittance ticket; One-Day, Galleries or Garden Pass.  At 10:00 am on […]

New Bern History Quest Steering Committee

New Bern Historical Society offers History Quest

June 2, 2021

Can You Solve a Clue? Gather Your Team! The New Bern Historical Society invites you to test your sleuthing skills in an all new, family friendly outdoor history hunt! On Saturday June 5 at 10 a.m., teams will gather at New Bern Battlefield Park to receive their clues to a series of quests. Hop in your car and follow the clues to find historical places in and around New Bern.  You’ll be amazed at what you’ll learn about our past! Those who complete all the quests by 4pm will be eligible for both prizes and bragging rights. The search for the […]

Mural on the side of the Mexican Bakery

What’s What in New Bern for June 2, 2021

June 2, 2021

Good day, New Bern Now Readers, Today is National Bubba Day, I Love My Dentist Day, Global Running Day, National Leave the Office Early Day, and a few others including National Rocky Road Ice Cream Day. So get out of work early, grab your Bubba, run to your Cow Café, Bear City Fudge Co., and/or Dairy Queen and enjoy a scoop of Rocky Road. And don’t forget to brush your teeth to make your Dentist happy. Tell us where you get your ice cream if we didn’t mention it so we can update our records. Here’s a snapshot of the […]

The Glorious Fourth

Palace celebrates The Glorious Fourth for Independence Day on July 3rd

May 28, 2021

Tryon Palace is thrilled to announce the return of The Glorious Fourth celebration of July Fourth Independence Day! As the Fourth of July falls on a Sunday this year, the event will take place on Saturday, July 3rd, beginning at 9 a.m. on the Palace grounds. The event offers a wonderful family opportunity to experience the excitement of the day when our forefathers signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and unified the thirteen colonies. The following commemorative festivities will begin at 9 a.m. and conclude at 12 Noon, on July 3rd: 9 a.m. – Presentation of plaque and flag by local Sons of the […]

Keith McClease and Nancy Hawley

‘In the Now’ – Wednesday, May 26, 2021

May 26, 2021

Good morning, everyone. Today is Paper Airplane Day, Blueberry Cheesecake Day, and Dracula Day. The “unofficial holidays” seem to get stranger, but Senior Health & Fitness Day, also today, makes sense, and I find Map Reading Week imperative. It may sound archaic, but I still use a map. I refuse to rely on GPS to lead me when there’s a chance of losing Internet connectivity. How many of you still use a map? Here’s a snapshot of what’s happening today in New Bern. Bear Outlook Weather via National Weather Service Today: Mostly sunny, with a high near 91. South wind 5 to […]

Union Point Park

‘In the Now’ – May 25, 2021

May 25, 2021

Good morning, everyone. Today is National Missing Children’s Day. It’s also National Sing Out Day and Brown-Bag it Day. Here’s a snapshot of what’s happening today in New Bern. Bear Outlook Weather via National Weather Service Today: A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 1 p.m. Partly sunny, with a high near 81. Southeast wind around 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%. Tonight: Partly cloudy, with a low around 70. South wind around 7 mph Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 90. Southwest wind 6 to 10 mp The Sun will rise at 5:56 a.m. and set at 8:13 […]

The Podsquad - Episode 184

The Podsquad – Episode 184

May 18, 2021

Learn about the people, places, and local resources in New Bern, NC and surrounding areas! The Podsquad: Kathy Morrison (New Bern Historical Society), Darlene Brown (Craven County Partners In Education), and I talked about all kinds of things related to living in the greater New Bern area. We were joined by special guest, Mary Ann LeRay (The Filling Station and Mary Kay Cosmetics). Listen:  Show notes: 1:21 – Trivia Contest Question 2:32 – Craven County Partners In Education – PIE Luncheon 3:12 – Speaker Dr. Bryan Johnson 4:10 – Virtual PIE Event 9:00 – Craven PIE raises money for […]