The History of New Bern NC

New Bern NCNew Bern's history runs deep. Beginning in 1710 when Swiss explorers traveled up the beautiful tree and cliff-lined shores of the Neuse River. They settled at a point where another major river, the Trent, heads westward through gracious marshes and wooded glens. At this point, and we can only imagine through long and complicated negotiations, the Swiss Baron von Graffenreid purchased the land from the Tuscarora Indians who used the area for its rich fishing grounds. A colonial encampment turned into a thriving fishing and shipping town called New Bern, fondly named after the Swiss town of Berne.

The name survived. The original settlers did not. And the area came under British rule. The colonial town grew. The Royal Governor William Tryon saw the need for a permanent capitol in the Carolinas and selected New Bern as the site for its beauty and charms. Tryon Palace, the first colonial and state capitol building of North Carolina was Tryon Palace New Bern NCdesigned by the English architect John Hawks. 

It has been reconstructed as it was in 1770 where the British Royal Governor entertained and the Colonial assembly met on the shores of the beautiful Trent River. World-renowned formal gardens surround the palace and remain one of North Carolina's top tourist destinations. It was known as the most beautiful building in colonial America when it was built, and we still look at it that way.

During the Civil War, extensive fortifications were built along New Bern's many waterways. Some are still in existence. Several Fort sites, long gone from sight, have been the source of major archaeological civil war finds. New Bern fell early to the Union Troops and our precious 12 block historic district suffered little from the war.

New Bern as all small Southern towns suffered during the Reconstruction; however, held her beautiful head high with pride and became a major shipping and bustling port town with vast lumber trade to her favor in the early 1900's. Since then the population has grown at a controlled pace, and has been governed with preservation and pride as our heritage. New Bern today is well known for its climate, cost of living, high quality medical facilities, varied outdoor activities, fine golf courses, reasonable real estate values, and of course, it's beauty.

 

 Click on images below to view larger version of some of the Historical Houses in New Bern NC

Historical House in New Bern NC Historical House in New Bern NC Historical House in New Bern NC Historical House in New Bern NC