Category: History

December 7th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

New Bern was selected as one of the nation’s top retirement destinations and one of its best small retirement towns by WhereToRetire.com in its sixth edition of “America’s 100 Best Places to Retire,” a guidebook of the country’s most appealing retirement towns.

WhereToRetire.com spent 11 months researching more than 800 cities. The chosen cities vary in size, climate, amenities and lifestyle, and each falls into one of 10 categories that focuses on the city’s defining feature, such as beaches, mountains, low costs, four seasons and appealing downtowns. Each city profile combines extensive research, local knowledge and in-depth interviews with retirees who made the move.

New Bern is a certified retirement community. The Certified Retirement Community designation means a city has completed a comprehensive evaluation process with requirements outlined by the North Carolina General Assembly.  Certified Retirement Communities are recognized for providing the amenities, services and opportunities retirees need to enjoy active and productive lives.

New Bern was recognized in April 2015 as one of the “10 Most Beautiful Towns in North Carolina,” and one of the “Top 10 Coastal Towns Where You Can Afford to Retire.”

Founded in 1710, New Bern it is the second oldest city in the state. It was the last colonial capital of North Carolina and its first state capital. “The City is a grand mix of carefully restored and maintained historical homes with old growth trees, a historic downtown, and contemporary houses ranging from condos to mansions, many with riverfront locations,” according to the website, Visit New Bern.

“New Bern’s character is palpable, and the people you meet are as vibrant as their surroundings. In addition to its beauty, New Bern is well-situated at the confluence of the Neuse and Trent Rivers, and only 35 miles from the Crystal Coast. The Atlantic Ocean is accessible by boat from New Bern, and New Bern’s rivers and creeks make a perfect playground for sailing, yachting, kayaking, Stand Up Paddle Boarding and fishing. New Bern has direct access to rivers and beaches without the high costs associated with beachfront living.”

Eight North Carolina cities were selected as top retirement destinations in “America’s 100 Best Places to Retire.” Other North Carolina towns are Boone/Blowing Rock, Charlotte, Durham, Hendersonville, Sylva, Wilmington, and Winston-Salem. 

North Carolina had the second highest number of towns on the list, behind only Florida. In addition, Winston-Salem was among the Best Four-Season Towns; Charlotte and Durham were among the Best Low-Cost Towns; and Boone/Blowing Rock, Hendersonville and Sylva were among the Best Mountain Towns.

For more information on visiting or relocating to New Bern go to www.VisitNewBern.com or www.visitnewbern.com/retire-new-bern/ Questions may be directed to marketingdirector@visitnewbern.com

Posted in Business, Community, Craven County, Downtown New Bern, Economy, Economy and Employment, Education, Entertainment, History, Housing, New Bern, Retirement

December 7th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Mary Hamilton Chiles made this gingerbread Tryon Palace.

This amazing gingerbread Tryon Palace, sitting in the window of Bella’s Cafe on Middle Street, could be yours.

The New Bern Historical Society is holding a silent auction on site with bidding running through Dec. 15 inside Bella’s Café.

Mary Hamilton Chiles

This work of art is created by Mary Hamilton Chiles as a tribute to her mother, and Historical Society Board Member and tireless volunteer, Nancy Chiles. Nancy was key in the Historical Society’s success last year with the first Gingerbread Contest. Mary Hamilton has donated her work to be auctioned with the proceeds supporting New Bern Historical Society projects.

Nancy Chiles

The silent auction is set up inside Bella’s Cafe & Catering at 323 Middle Street. The auction will close on Dec. 15 and the winner will be notified.

The Tryon Palace gingerbread is part of the 2nd annual Gingerbread House Contest and Display presented by the New Bern Historical Society.  Gingerbread creations are displayed at 12 merchants throughout downtown New Bern:

  • Nautical Wheelers
  • Bella’s Café & Catering
  • Carolina Creations
  • Mitchell’s Hardware
  • WITN
  • The Four C’s
  • Edward Jones
  • Be-Spoke Custom Florals
  • Ballantyne Framing and Art
  • The Birthplace of Pepsi
  • U.S. Post Office
  • Trent River Realty

All of the gingerbread houses will be in place until Dec. 18.

“We send our unending thanks to Mary Hamilton Chiles for this beautiful work remembering a beautiful lady!” said Historical Society Executive Director Mickey Miller. “We also thank Sandy Quinionez of Bella’s Cafe & Catering for sharing their brand-new window space.”

The New Bern Historical Society celebrates and promotes New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.

For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in Downtown New Bern, History, New Bern Historical Society

October 31st, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Scott Mason gives Historical Society’s Lore Lecture on Nov. 11.

 

WRAL’s Scott Mason has been travelling throughout North Carolina since 1997 meeting interesting characters, learning fascinating stories and discovering delicious food.  

On Sunday, Nov. 11 at 2 p.m. at the New Bern Historical Society’s annual Lore Lecture, he’ll share some of what he’s learned presenting Tarheel Traveler, Stories from the Road.  This is a free presentation. No tickets or reservations are necessary.  Doors will open at 1pm.  There will be a reception following the lecture.

Mason is a broadcast journalist with 35 years of television experience. He has won dozens of awards for documentaries, writing, and feature reporting, including three National Edward R. Murrow awards and 20 regional Emmys. The Electronic News Association of the Carolinas has twice named Scott North Carolina Television Reporter of the Year.

Mason has worked as a reporter and bureau chief for network affiliates in Chattanooga, Tenn.; Winston-Salem; and Dayton, Ohio.

In 1991, Mason joined the PBS affiliate in Richmond, Va., where he created, wrote, produced, and hosted a weekly news magazine. Virginia Currents won more than 100 awards for journalistic excellence during Scott’s tenure. The United States Information Agency distributed the program to embassies worldwide.

His success caught the attention of WRAL-TV, the NBC affiliate in Raleigh. In April 1997, he became the station’s Documentary Producer. He researched, wrote, and produced ten documentaries before adding his talents to the nightly news team as a reporter specializing in features.

Today, Mason is known as the Tar Heel Traveler. His Monday-Thursday series on WRAL takes viewers along the back roads of North Carolina where he meets memorable characters, finds out-of-the-way places and unearths fascinating historical footnotes. The series has become so popular it has led to Tar Heel Traveler half-hour specials, which he produces each quarter.

Mason has also published two books about his television adventures: Tar Heel Traveler: Journeys Across North Carolina (2010) and Tar Heel Traveler Eats: Food Journeys Across North Carolina (2014), both published by Rowman & Littlefield Press.

Mason‘s third book is FAITH and AIR: The Miracle List (2017, Light Messages Publishing), a creative nonfiction account of people he has profiled during his career who say they have experienced miracles.

The Dr. Richard K. Lore Lecture is presented annually by the New Bern Historical Society as a free event for all those interested in area history.  It is in memory of, and is named for the Society’s long-time historian.

This lecture is presented by the New Bern Historical Society in partnership with Tryon Palace and is made possible by funding from the North Carolina Humanities Council, a statewide nonprofit and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic AttmoreOliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in History, New Bern

October 2nd, 2018 by newbernpostadmin
The Blades House, one of New Berns iconic historic homes, has been added to this years Ghostwalk lineup.

While Hurricane Florence has meant minor changes in the Ghostwalk line-up, the New Bern Historical Society is finding that when a ghost site has had to step out, others step in.  This includes the William B. Blades house on the corner of Johnson and Middle streets.

Historical Society Executive Director Mickey Miller said, “What a generous offer from the owners of the Blades House. How wonderful it is that they want to help make Ghostwalk successful. This is yet another great example of New Bernians working together to make our town so successful.”

Ghostwalk is an annual event presented by the New Bern Historical Society, this year held Oct. 25-27. Each Ghostwalk brings a whole new batch of historical characters from New Bern’s colorful and varied past to tell you their stories. This year’s theme: Graves’ Anatomy, brings tales ofMedicine, Mystery and Mayhem. That would leave the ghostly field open to everyone from well-respected surgeons to snake oil salesmen.

The current line-up of Ghostwalk sites and an online map are available at www.GhostwalkNewBern.com.

Ghostwalk is a family-friendly event with entertaining stories from our history, tempting dinners available at historic churches, and this year something new.  At the historic Judge Gaston Law office, each Ghostwalk ticket-holder can have their picture taken at the professional Tap Snap photo booth.  They will go home with a free photo souvenir as well as a digital image, all as part of their Ghostwalk ticket.

Tickets are available at www.GhostwalkNewBern.com or by calling 252-638-8558, and at the following outlets: The New Bern Historical Society, Mitchell’s Hardware, Bank of the Arts, Harris Teeter on Glenburnie and in Carolina Colours, ITT Office aboard Cherry Point Marine Air Station, and ASAP Photo in Greenville.


The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore-Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in Entertainment, History, Hurricane, New Bern

September 29th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Rear Adm. Jay DeLoach presents at Historical Society Lunch & Learn

Admiral David Farragut, yes of the “Damn the Torpedoes” fame, is connected to Eastern North Carolina.

Rear Admiral Jay DeLoach will explain that, and more as he presents Admiral Farragut: the North Carolina and Spanish Connections at the New Bern Historical Society’s Lunch & Learn on Wednesday, October 10 at 11:30 at The Chelsea Restaurant.

Rear Admiral Jay DeLoach

DeLoach reveals, “David Glasglow Farragut was born 15 miles outside the frontier town of Knoxville, Tennessee. At the tender age of nine, he would join the Navy to start his 60-year career in this demanding sea service.  At the start of the Civil War, he remained loyal to the Union and would later become the US Navy’s first admiral after the capture of New Orleans in 1862. This presentation will not, however, explore Admiral Farragut’s spectacular Naval career but will dive into his family background with a mother with local eastern NC roots and a father who hailed from a foreign shore across the Atlantic Ocean and came to this country to fight the British during the Revolutionary War.”

Rear Admiral Jay DeLoach graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1978 and served on submarines as well as several assignments with Naval Intelligence, 7th Fleet, and Joint Staff.  He earned three Masters’ degrees, in Management, Nuclear Engineering, and National Security & Strategic Studies. He also served as an adjunct professor for the Naval War College and taught Joint Maritime Operations.  After retirement from the military, he became a member of the Senior Executive Service in the Department of the Navy and led the transformation of the Naval History & Heritage Command as its 12th Director from 2008-12.  He is currently the Vice President of the New Bern Chapter of the NC Sons of the American Revolution.  He is also an active participant on the Historian Committee and the Journal Committee for the New Bern Historical Society.

Historical Society Executive Director Mickey Miller said, “We are excited to have Jay present this fascinating story for us and expect that he’ll have quite a following.  We’re encouraging folks to get their reservations early!”

Lunch & Learn starts at 11:30 a.m. at The Chelsea Restaurant, 335 Middle Street, New Bern. The cost is $17 for Historical Society members and $22 for non-members; lunch is included. Advance reservations must be made by calling the New Bern Historical Society at 252-638-8558, or can be ordered at www.NewBernHistorical.org/tickets. Lunch choices are Brown Butter Barbeque Chicken or Beef Tenderloin with Cabernet Demi-Glace. both served with Potatoes Au Gratin and Mixed Vegetable Medley.

The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in History, New Bern

September 27th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Learn How to Build Gingerbread House Class Oct. 19

Getting back to normal is the priority for New Bern following Hurricane Florence.  The New Bern Historical Society’s Gingerbread House Contest is moving forward with just that in mind. Florence means there will be some adjustments; it means plan B, which in this case means Bring People Downtown. The imaginative gingerbread creations drew many to downtown windows last year and the Society is hoping for even more this year as merchants work hard to re-open.

Executive Director Mickey Miller said, “We invite everyone to enter the contest.  Your creative baking and building will produce the wonderful pieces that will draw folks to the contest downtown. If you are among those who were blessed with less damage, please consider using your kitchen for this project.”

You may enter as individuals or teams in three categories:  Youth, Adult and Professional.  There will be prizes at each level and two additional prizes.  One is the People’s Choice, voted on by the public.  The other is the Nancy Chiles Heritage Award for the creation that best represents the theme “Historic New Bern Christmas.” This in memory of long-time Board member and avid Gingerbread supporter, Nancy Chiles.  The first 50 who enter will receive a hand-crafted pottery ornament made by the Potters of New Bern Art & Wellness Center.

If you are interested in building a gingerbread house, but are unsure of your skills, you are in luck.  The Society will be presenting a “Building a Gingerbread House” class on Friday, Oct. 19 at 7 p.m. at Craven Community College.  It will leave you with all the skills and information you need to build your own creation.  Registration fee is $10 which will go to support the Gingerbread prizes.

All the information and details for the class and the contest are available at www.NewBernHistorical.org/gingerbread or by calling 252-638-8558. The deadline to enter the contest is November 5.  Further information is available on Facebook in the Gingerbread New Bern group.

The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in Community, History, New Bern

September 25th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

For 28 years, Ghostwalk has endured whatever mother nature sends along.  This year she sent Florence.  For many New Bernians this means much flooding and damage.  As the city works back toward normalcy, the New Bern Historical Society joins all of New Bern moving forward.

Ghostwalk will go on Oct. 25-27.

There will be some modifications. Some of their original plans may change, different ghosts may make the trip back, but they will give you a historical good time for three evenings. And celebrate New Bern in the process.

Tickets, good for all three nights, are available online and at the New Bern Historical Society office at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.

Ticket outlets, as listed on the website, should be ready late in the week of Sept. 24.

They are still expecting a whole crew of spirited characters from New Bern’s past reflecting this year’s theme:  Graves’ Anatomy.  So, stand by for medicine, mystery and mayhem.

Many of the city’s historic churches will provide ghostly fare, so leave dinner planning to them.

They will have the Tap Snap photo booth for a souvenir photo for all ticketholders, watch for wonderful theatre previews as well. Keep an eye out for spirits at Cedar Grove Cemetery and prepare for a realistic Civil War hospital presentation.

“We salute those hard-working people who, in the face of Florence, are demonstrating #NewBernStrong,” the Historical Society said in a news release. “The New Bern Historical Society invites you to come celebrate New Bern and our wonderful history at Ghostwalk.  Despite the efforts of Florence and Mother Nature, New Bern endures! Title Sponsors, Chesnutt, Clemmons and Peacock; and CarolinaEast Health System. Media title sponsorship provided by WITN. Additional media sponsorship by Public Radio East.

The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore Oliver House at 511 Broad Street in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Bill Hand welcomes visitors to Cedar Grove Cemetery.

Posted in Entertainment, History, New Bern

September 6th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

No one disputes the success of the 30-year transformation of Downtown New Bern from a run-down blighted mess, to the vibrant tourist attraction it has become.

One thing that made the transformation so successful is that it restored 19th and early 20th century buildings to their original glory.

Now, armed with a new redevelopment agency and a roadmap called the Greater Five Points Transformation Plan, the City of New Bern turns its attention to a collection of historically black neighborhoods collectively called “Greater Duffyfield.”

(Note: I put “Greater Duffyfield” in quotes, because historically, they were different neighborhoods, not the least of which is Dryborough. “Greater Duffyfield” was coined by City Hall as a way to group these neighborhoods together for planning and management purposes, although some would say there were more nefarious reasons.)

If you gather any number of people in a room and ask them to envision what “Greater Duffyfield” should look like 30 years from now, the number of answers will probably be close to the number of people in the room.

UNC-TV has been holding a series of community sessions in New Bern this week, including one at Riverfront Convention Center about New Bern’s future. Three stellar panels of New Bern leaders spoke during the five-hour session. By the end, they said almost nothing about the future.

So I thought I’d throw out one idea.

Instead of bulldozing “Greater Duffyfield” and replacing it with condominiums and strip malls, please, please, please respect its distinctive cultural heritage the way New Bern’s Main Street program respected downtown’s distinctive history.

The neighborhoods have already been added to New Bern’s overarching historic district, and for good reason.

West Street, for example, is chock full of historic sites from the days of segregation including a hospital, a school, a library, and the former home of none other than Grover C. Fields.

Dryborough, one of New Bern’s earliest subdivisions, was eventually to become a significant place in New Bern’s African American culture.

African American neighborhoods south of Queen Street were supplanted by first neglect and segregation, and than gentrification. They migrated north of Queen Street, which became the racial dividing line in Old New Bern. (Riverside, which used the railroad as its dividing line, remained a white-only neighborhood and likes to refer to itself as New Bern’s first suburb.)

As neighborhoods north of Queen Street became populated by African Americans, city planners and public works did what they usually did in the segregated South. Streets were narrow and it was a long time before they became paved. There were no sidewalks, curbs, or gutters. Street lights were rare. Much of the area was subject to flooding and remains so to this very day.

But these neighborhoods were self-supporting. They included a hospital, a nursing home, shopping districts, lawyers and doctors offices, a hotel, and a library. It even had its own fire department.

When segregation became illegal in the 1960s, African Americans could shop at places like J.C. Penny and Belk, and dine at previously all-white restaurants, at the expense of mom-and-pop businesses in the Five Points area and along Main Street in Duffyfield. When they called the fire department, white firefighters would respond. When they went to the hospital, they could go to the same hospital as white people. And they went to school at the same schools as white children.

Those African-American-owned businesses and institutions became the victims of unintended consequences and many went out of business. But their empty shells remain scattered throughout the neighborhoods.

While most of the streets today are paved, there remains a distinctive flavor to the neighborhoods that can be preserved and elevated.

I propose that efforts be made to preserve those houses and buildings that are worth preserving. For those beyond repair, replacements be subject to design standards so that they retain the distinctive nature of the neighborhoods.

I propose that the city identify neighborhood commercial zones such as Main Street and at Five Points, with redevelopment funding targeting the revitalization of these areas to highlight New Bern’s rich, vibrant, and significant African American history.

Great cities like New York and San Francisco have sections that celebrate different ethnicities. Look at Chinatown, Little Italy, Harlem, and so on. “Greater Duffyfield” could be one such neighborhood, one that celebrates history and culture rather than replacing it with townhouses and strip malls.

Many people aren’t aware of the important role that New Bern played in African American history. Following its fall to Union forces during the Civil War, it became a center of freedom for emancipated and escaped slaves.

New Bern needs to tell the world about this, and preserving its African American neighborhoods is one way to do it.

~ Randy Foster/New Bern Post

What are your thoughts?

Posted in History, Housing, New Bern, Opinion, Planning and Zoning

September 1st, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

This 1820s map of New Bern shows the Downtown, Lawson Creek (Long Wharf) left of Downtown, and Dryborough above Downtown.

Riverside, Ghent, or DeGraffenreid Park — which holds title as New Bern’s first subdivision?

None of them, actually. That title goes to Long Wharf, followed by Dryborough:

  1. New Bern–1710. The historic downtown section.
  2. Lawson Creek (Long Wharf )–1797. Between Tryon Palace, First Street, Pollock Street and Lawson Creek.
  3. Dryborough–1806. North of Queen Street.
  4. Riverside–1894. East of Dryborough.
  5. Ghent–1912. West of First Street.
  6. DeGraffenreid Park–1926. North of Ghent.

Lawson Creek has long since lost its identity as a distinct neighborhood, but Dryborough continues to this day and, along with Downtown, Riverside, Ghent, and DeGraffenreid, is listed in the National Register of Historic Places as an area of historical significance.

Still, Dryborough often gets short-shrifted when New Bern’s history is told. Case in point: The New Bern Historical Society’s Lunch & Learn topic coming up on Sept. 12 is titled, “Riverside: New Bern’s First Suburb.”

Without a doubt, Riverside has an interesting history, but being called “New Bern’s first Suburb” is not rightly part of the narrative.

According to “A History of New Bern and Craven County,” “the area north of Queen Street had been acquired from the Pollock family by William Dry, a wealthy resident of the Cape Fear, who bequeathed it to his daughter and son-in-law, Sarah Dry Smith and Benjamin Smith.

“Smith, governor of the state in 1810-1811, subdivided the acreage into streets and lots; in 1806, the General Assembly approved his plan for the town of Drysborough.

Now a historic neighborhood of New Bern, Dryborough’s enduring legacy is as the social and cultural center of African American life in New Bern even after the Great Fire of 1922, which greatly impacted the people and area both economically and culturally.

According to the National Register of Historic Places Program, Historic Dryborough community is a strongly African American neighborhood that originated in the early 19th century and grew in population during the late-19th and early-20th centuries. Initially it was home to both blacks and whites, but the proportion of black residents increased gradually, so that Dryborough and the area around it became an important center of African American civic life in New Bern. (Full description here).

Posted in History, New Bern

August 2nd, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Second Eddie Ellis presentation added

The New Bern Historical Society is pleased to offer a second presentation of Tales of Espionage in Civil War Craven County featuring historian and author Eddie Ellis, on Aug. 16 at 6:30 p.m. in the Cullman Performance Hall at the North Carolina History Center.  Tickets are $10 and are available at 252-638-8558 or www.NewBernHistorical.com/tickets.

In eastern North Carolina during the Civil War, Union occupiers existed alongside Southern civilians. Military leaders struggled to capture territory, railroads, waterways.  One of the most sought-after commodities was information.  Ellis explains, “The Burnside-created enclave of coastal forts strung from New Bern to Fort Macon was the focus of intense intelligence gathering and clandestine shenanigans from 1862 till the end of the struggle between North and South. Spies are, by their very nature, nameless. Fresh analysis of the war’s voluminous records, however, now allows us to name names. This program will reveal previously unknown tales of the dark network of Southern secret agents, both men and women, who operated here.”

While the Aug. 15 Lunch & Learn presentation on this exciting program sold out early, there are still tickets available for on Thursday, Aug. 16.

Edward Barnes Ellis, Jr. has worked as a journalist, a lobbyist and a laborer. A native of Craven County, Eddie is the descendant of a family that recorded the first land deed in North Carolina. Among his ancestors are settlers at Jamestown, Va., and veterans of the American Revolution and the War Between the States. He’s been hooked on history since elementary school.

For most of his career, he was engaged in the newspaper business as a reporter, photographer, columnist, editor and publisher. Eddie is the founder of the Havelock News and the former publisher of Cherry Point’s Windsock. He was chosen to be the official historian of the City of Havelock in 1984.

Eddie has written three histories based on his years of personal research. His 2005 book In This Small Place: Amazing Tales of the First 300 Years of Havelock and Craven County, North

Carolina, is the first volume of history ever written about the Havelock-Cherry Point area. His second book, New Bern History 101, a compelling portrait of the city of his birth, received the 2010 Book Award of the North Carolina Society of Historians. His third, a photo book entitled Historic Images of Havelock & Cherry Point, offers more than 170 rare images and detailed descriptions of the community collected over four decades.

This Historical Society presentation, in partnership with Tryon Palace, will be at 6:30 pm on Thursday, August 16 at the Cullman Performance Hall at the North Carolina History Center. Tickets are $10 and are available by calling the New Bern Historical Society at 252-638-8558 or can be ordered at www.NewBernHistorical.org/tickets.

The mission of the New Bern Historical Society is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore-Oliver House at 511 Broad Street in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in History, New Bern

July 20th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

The New Bern Historical Society is looking for a few good ghosts.

Whether you are a spirited novice or have lots of ghostly experience, the Historical Society wants you to portray the historic characters in this year’s Ghostwalk.

Ghostwalk brings to life noted personalities from New Bern’s past right in the very locations they may have been seen. There’s no need to worry though, all the apparitions in these stories are from the pages of history, not from science fiction. Each year a new and different batch of spirits appear. Auditions will be Thursday, Aug. 2, at 6:00 p.m. at the Attmore-Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.

Mickey Miller, executive director, is looking for volunteers, both men and women, ages 18 and up to play the phantom roles. “We’d like folks who are interested in this fun and exciting event, and who can give the time for the event’s three days. No experience is necessary. No preparation is necessary. Some might say, no pulse is necessary.”

Participants will be asked to read from scripts. Those selected will perform at one of 13 ghost sites including Cedar Grove Cemetery. Ghostwalk will take place the evenings of Oct. 25-27.

If you are interested in participating in one of New Bern’s premier events as one of the ghostly specters from the past, call or email the New Bern Historical Society office at 252-638-8558, adminoffice@newbernhistorical.org.

 

Posted in History, New Bern

July 20th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Corner of Middle and South Front streets. Captain Ratty’s in 2017.

Audiences filled the auditorium quickly for Curator Jim Hodges’ “New Bern Then and Now” presentation, so much so that the New Bern Historical Society decided to do another encore.

Aug. 8 will bring another opportunity to see and hear this popular lecture filled with photos and images from New Bern’s history.

Hodges explains many of the “Used to Be’s” in New Bern. Captain Ratty’s used to be Duffy’s Drug Store, Morgan’s used to be True Tread Tires, First Citizens Bank sits where used to be the Hotel Queen Anne.

Corner of Middle and South Front streets. Central News in 1971.

This popular speaker will reveal the past and current status of more than 30 New Bern landmarks in an encore presentation on Aug. 8  at 6:30 p.m. at the Cullman Performance Hall at the North Carolina History Center at no charge. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.  Once again, early arrival is recommended!

Hodges has scoured the New Bern Historical Society collection to share with you these wonderful images from our past.  In some cases, the buildings have been carefully renovated and saved in their original condition.  In others they have been saved and re-purposed, while sometimes they are simply lost.  In any case, you will be fascinated by these historic images.

Corner of Middle and South Front streets. Duffy’s Drug Store circa 1920.

Hodges was reared in New Bern, matriculated to UNC-Chapel Hill, earning an undergraduate degree in chemistry and a post graduate dental degree. After satisfying a military commitment and enjoying several years of international travel, Jim returned to New Bern and practiced dentistry until his retirement in 2012.

His current life chapter involves his passion for New Bern and its rich history as a member of the Historical Society and the Tryon Palace Foundation Board of Directors. As the volunteer Curator of the New Bern Historical Society he spends his days maintaining, conserving and finding ways to share the collection.

Board President Joe Hunt said, “Whether you are a New Bern native or a transplant from elsewhere, you will be fascinated by these images. We are grateful to our friends at Tryon Palace for facilitating this presentation at the Cullman.”

This program is sponsored by the New Bern Historical Society in partnership with Tryon Palace. The Historical Society’s mission is to celebrate and promote New Bern and its heritage through events and education.  Offices are located in the historic Attmore-Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558 or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in Entertainment, History, New Bern

July 10th, 2018 by newbernpostadmin

Ed Bearss

For soldiers wounded in battle in the Civil War, the outcome was often grim. For soldiers wounded in World War II, the outcome was far different.

Renowned historian Ed Bearss was with the 3rd Marine Raider Battalion in the invasion of Guadalcanal and the Russell Islands, and the 1st Marine Division in New Britain. In 1944, Bearss was severely wounded by Japanese machine gun fire and spent 26 months recovering in various hospitals.

In his 12th annual visit to New Bern, Bearss will discuss medical conditions over the years and the possible outcome if he had suffered his extensive injuries during the Civil War. See him at Cullman Performance Hall at the North Carolina History Center at 2 p.m. on Sunday, July 22. This presentation was originally scheduled in January but was re-scheduled due to weather.

This is the 12th in a series of annual visits for Bearss, who was instrumental in the preservation of New Bern’s Civil War battlefield. One of the leading historians and experts on the Civil War, Bearss was recently presented a Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Battlefield Trust and was also the first inductee into its Battlefield Preservation Hall of Fame.

Ed Bearss during his World War II service in the Marines.

Jim Lighthizer, President of the American Battlefield Trust, said, “From his dynamic and detail-rich tours to his recovery of the lost U.S.S. Cairo gunboat, Ed’s phenomenal memory and tenacious curiosity have made him a powerhouse of knowledge and discovery.”

Bearss served as Chief Historian of the National Park Service from 1981 to 1994 and is now Chief Historian Emeritus. A sought-after speaker and PBS commentator, he is also a prolific author known for his work on the American Civil War and World War II eras, and a popular tour guide of historic battlefields world-wide.

Considered “An American Treasure” by the Smithsonian Institution, his books are definitive works on the period.

There is no charge and reservations are not necessary for this presentation. Early arrival is recommended. There will be a recption in Mattocks Hall following the presentation.

This lecture is presented by the New Bern Civil War Round Table and the New Bern Historical Society in partnership with Tryon Palace. For more information, call the New Bern Historical Society at 252-638-8558 or at newbernhistorical.org.

The New Bern Historical Society celebrates and promotes New Bern and its heritage through events and education. Offices are located in the historic Attmore-Oliver House at 511 Broad St. in New Bern.  For more information, call 252-638-8558, or go www.NewBernHistorical.org or www.facebook.com/NewBernHistoricalSociety.

Posted in History, Marines, New Bern, Tryon Palace

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