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Thursday, October 02, 2008

Tryon Palace, New Bern, NC

We finally got our lazy selves out to explore another part of this area. We had gone to New Bern back in the spring when we were here, but had not toured Tryon Palace. So, that was our destination today.

Tryon Palace was built at the first permanent state capitol of North Carolina. It was constructed between 1767 and 1770 and was to also serve as the home of the Royal Governor. Unfortunately, the original main building of the palace was burned almost to the ground in 1798 because of a fire that began in the cellar where hay was stored. The kitchen and stable buildings were saved; however, the kitchen building was demolished in the 19th century. The stable building has remained.

Randy & me

View of the entire estate from the main road
The main building

The kitchen building
The stable buildingUltimately, in the 19th century, the land on which the Palace had sat was sold and divided into sections on which houses and businesses were built. The street in front of the palace was extended right over the site of the original main building's foundation.

Finally, in the 1930s, a group of folks decided the Palace and its buildings needed to be restored or rebuilt to reflect their original state. In 1951, reconstruction began and it took 8 years for completion, with the site opening to the public in 1959. In order to restore the area as it was in the 1700s, more than 50 buildings had to be removed and NC State Route 70 had to be rerouted which included a new bridge over the Trent River. Archaeological digs were done to determine the placement of original foundations. A very big undertaking indeed.

We took a guided tour of the main building. Our guide was very knowledgable and, for the most part, stayed in character as a maid of the house. Many of the library are first editions and were owned by Royal Governor Tryon. Furnishings are of the 1700s and arranged much as they would have been during the Tryon family's occupation of the palace.

The gardens look like they would be absolutely gorgeous in season. Of course, at this time of year, there was some color, but not much. However, one can still appreciate the care given to them and visualize what they would look like in mid-summer.

The town of New Bern is very quaint and full of history. There are a couple of other walking tours I'd like to take sometime in the future. All in all, it was a good day and the weather was gorgeous.

Until the next time . . .

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous1:52 PM

    Wow, this place looks so cool, I wish I was there!

    Signed, Willy from Winterville