Rowan County is an original destination for historic experiences. We’re a place where heritage and history are highly valued and noticeable at every turn. The county boasts 11 National Register districts, five Local Historic districts, an impressive history museum, three house museums and a meticulously restored depot that has been featured at the Smithsonian and in well-known movies, and so much more. Several popular walking and driving tours are offered to take in historic sites. From the early days of Daniel Boone to the civil war, you’ll find so many sites important to North Carolina and United States history here.
African American Heritage Trail
Downtown Salisbury, N.C., Surrounding Areas & Livingstone College Campus
The African American Heritage Trail has many sites where visitors can experience the rich and diversified heritage of Salisbury and Rowan County. The trail highlights historic places, leaders, and experiences in the lives of people of color who resided, worked and contributed to the industrial, artistic, cultural and spiritual life of the Salisbury Community. A copy of the tour brochure can be picked up at the Rowan County Visitor Center or downloaded electronically here.
China Grove Roller Mill
308 N. Main St., China Grove, N.C.
For more than 100 years, the China Grove Roller Mill was a continuous operation, as well as a meeting place for the agricultural community to sell their grain, to purchase farm necessities and to socialize. The roller mill is now a museum of the architectural history of the area and offers seasonal tours to the public each year.
Dr. Josephus Hall House
226 S. Jackson St., Salisbury, N.C.
The Hall House was originally a female academy, then transformed to a grand southern residence and now serves as a museum of four generations of the Hall family. From unique, historical architecture and design to the rich history the house holds inside its doors, the Hall House Museum is definitely a place you'll want to check out during your visit.
Historic National Cemetery and Confederate Prison Site
501 Statesville Blvd., Salisbury, N.C.
Visit the Historic National Cemetery that serves as the final resting place of veterans of all wars and the Confederate Prison Site of the Civil War Era. Buried in 18 trench graves are 11,700 unknown soldiers who died at the Salisbury Confederate Prison during the Civil War.
Historic Downtown Salisbury Trolley Tours
Downtown Salisbury, N.C.
Here in Rowan County, we offer a one-of-a-kind experience of taking a trolley around Downtown Salisbury and being guided through the town's history. The trolleys are currently offered for private rentals only, and more information can be requested via a short form submission here.
Gold Hill Mines Historic Park
770 St. Stephen's Church Rd., Gold Hill, N.C.
The Gold Hill Mines & Historic Park is a part of the North Carolina Gold Trail. Visitors can hike the Gold Hill Rail Trail, which includes the Powder House, Gold Hill Pond, Gold Hill Jail and a primitive Chilean Ore Mill.
North Carolina Transportation Museum
1 Samuel Spencer Dr., Spencer, N.C.
The North Carolina Transportation Museum’s four large exhibit buildings represent the remaining structures of the Spencer Shops - once Southern Railroad’s largest steam locomotive repair facility on the East Coast. The museum is a source of history, education and entertainment for young and old.
Old Stone House
770 Old Stone House Rd., Granite Quarry, N.C.
The Old Stone House was built by German Immigrant, Michael Braun in 1766. The two story Georgian style home is the oldest structure in Rowan County. Throughout each year, the Rowan Museum hosts several history events at the Old Stone House that are loved by many included the Colonial Spring Frolic and German Fest.
202 N. Main St., Salisbury, N.C.
The Rowan Museum is housed within the 1854 Courthouse which survived General Stoneman’s raid in the American Civil War. It’s one of the finest examples of pre-Civil War architecture in the state. The courthouse now houses the Rowan Museum and it’s interactive exhibits.
Salisbury Heritage Walking Tour
Downtown Salisbury, N.C.
The Salisbury Heritage Walking Tour is the perfect way to take in the history and architecture of Downtown Salisbury at your own pace. This self-guided walking tour provides a personal glimpse into the history and architecture of Downtown Salisbury and the stately homes of the West Square District. A copy of the Salisbury Heritage Walking Tour can be picked up at the Rowan County Visitor Center.
116 S. Jackson St., Salisbury, N.C.
Jacob Stirewalt built the 1819 Federal townhouse that is now known as the Utzman-Chambers House. The home reflects the history and lifestyle of more affluent citizens of the early 1800s. It is one of the few Federal style surviving townhomes in the Piedmont of North Carolina.
These are 11 of the many historic attraction experiences awaiting you in Rowan County. Find out more on our Historic Attraction page.