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Carteret County History And Education In NC – Museums And More

Local education and information links about Carteret County history in NC. Learn more about the local communities in Morehead City, Beaufort, areas down east near Harkers Island and more.

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Carteret County NC was formed in 1722 and named in honor of Sir John Carteret. Beaufort NC is the third oldest city in North Carolina and was known in the early days as “Fishtown” because of the importance of the fishing community in the local area.

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Portsmouth Island and Beaufort were important ports in in the early days and were instrumental in exports to England, with the chief goods being tobacco, grains, and salted meats and fish.

Fort Macon is a notable historical fort that was a catalyst for many naval battles during the Revolutionary War and served as a prison maintained by the federal government after the war. Fort Macon was constructed between 1826 and 1834.

Morehead City was established in 1858 as a railroad town and soon became the largest settlement in the county.

The first child born in settled areas of what would officially become Carteret County was named John Fulford, born in 1629. Records show that John Fulford died in 1729 with cemetery marking in the community of Straits.

Local Data

Blackbeard the pirate is documented as having owned what is now a historical home in Beaufort known as the “Hammock House” which can be toured today by the public.

The Old Burying Ground cemetery is located on Ann St near what is now the social services building and is a famous attraction for local visitors. The Old Burying Ground cemetery was established in the early 1700s and is now managed by the Beaufort Historical Society.

Historical Information And Education – Museums In The County

History Museum of Carteret County – 1008 Arendell St, Morehead City, NC 28557, 252-247-7533, Open Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. till 4 p.m.

Admission for adults is $3 and kids aged 5-18 is $1. Offers historical society memberships for individuals ($25), Couples ($35), and family ($35).

Contains an extensive research library of books, documents, and photographs depicting the evolution of development of the local community.

Offers a great representation of artifacts related to the historical relevance of the local community, the Rodney Kemp gallery, genealogy materials, and other exhibits.

Maritime Museum In Beaufort NC – 315 Front St, Beaufort, NC 28516, 252-504-7740. Open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. till 5 p.m. and Saturday 10 a.m. till 5 p.m.

Admission is free.

Offers extensive galleries, events, and educational resources relevant to the coastal heritage and unique culture of the Outer Banks and Eastern NC. A great resource for learning about the seafood industry, local lighthouses, aquatic environment, and boat building. Contains artifacts from the Queen Ann’s Revenge and Blackbeard the pirate.

This is a great 1/2 day adventure and education opportunity for kids.

Old Meets New

Core Sound Decoy Carvers Guild – 1574 Harkers Island Rd, Beaufort, NC 28516, 252-838-8818.

Dedicated to the history and preservation of waterfowl carving that has a rich history in the down east communities. Offers great events all year long for kids and adults including the decoy festival.

Webb Memorial Library – 812 Evans St, Morehead City, NC 28557, 252-726-3012, Open Monday through Friday at 10 a.m. till 7 p.m. except on Friday they close at 2 p.m.

The oldest library in the county and Morehead City offering books with significant historical relevance.

Michael J. Smith – While there is no local museum or dedicated establishment to the life of Michael J. Smith who was the pilot aboard the Challenger Space Shuttle lost in 1986 and a native of the county, there are many monuments to remembering his accomplishments in the local communities especially at schools in Beaufort NC where he attended school as a child.

Old Burying Ground – Located at the 400 block in Beaufort NC, is the oldest cemetery in the town and has many fascinating stories attached to it’s existence. This site is maintained by the Beaufort Historical Site and we encourage you to take a tour of this very compelling artifact.

wooden grave sites

Local Societies

Carteret County Historical Society – Located at the history museum at 1008 Arendell St in Morehead City NC.

Beaufort Historical Society – 130 Turner St, Beaufort, NC 28516, 252-728-5225, Open Monday through Saturday 9 a.m. till 5 p.m.


As it relates to Carteret County history in NC, to local educational museums, public interest and attractions, and other artifacts, what specific information can you offer readers by using the comment section below?

While we mentioned the Old Burying Ground, where are other relevant cemetery markings in the local communities dating back to the early development of the county?

If you have ever attended an event by Rodney Kemp who is a local historian, what can you tell readers about this remarkable man? If you have not attended any of his talks, I urge you to please consider doing so. Mr. Kemp knows every detail about the history of the county, including each municipality locally. He is a very gracious man.

Further Reading

Michael Sharp

Native of Carteret County NC, Father to Makayla and Savannah. You can add me on Facebook. Interest include web development, encryption, and other technologies.

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