Explore Historic North Carolina
The mountains and foothills of North Carolina boast some of the richest collections of historic resources in North America,much of which is available at the many museums in the region. Home to the ancient Cherokee civilization, the historic North Carolina mountains were explored by the Spanish in the 1500s and have seen waves of Euro-American settlers since that time, most notably the Scots-Irish.
Historical Sites in North Carolina
The North Carolina mountains saw some of the fiercest guerilla fighting during the Civil War. Railroads came to the mountains by 1880 and soon after began to bring thousands of visitors in search of better health, inspiration, and renewal. One of those visitors, George Vanderbilt, elected to build his home in Asheville—the Biltmore Estate—which became the largest private residence in America and one of the most widely known historical sites in North Carolina. Today, visitors continue to come to the mountains for inspiration and renewal, but they also aim to deepen their understanding of our shared history and cultural heritage.
Three state historical sites are in the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area:
- Mountain Gateway Museum, Old Fort.
- Thomas Wolfe Memorial, Asheville.
- Vance Birthplace, Weaverville.
The National Park Service operates the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site in Flat Rock, and the Mountain Farm Museum in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Visit Historic Properties and Historical Places in NC
The rich and complex history of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area is brought to life in hundreds of historic sites and museums, and several historic trails that wind across the region.
Listen to some interesting stories about our History and Heritage in our Sights & Sounds Gallery and learn more about historical Blue Ridge attractions. Just click on the links below: