Back in Time Williamston, Windsor, and Edenton

Williamston, North Carolina

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Travel back to the roots of North Carolina on this day trip, which takes you to three eighteenth-century towns, including North Carolina’s first Colonial capital, Edenton. But before landing in Edenton, stop first in Williamston, east of Raleigh. Founded just three years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Williamston has two National Register Historic Districts that highlight nineteenth- and early twentieth-century life. Along the town’s tree-shaded streets, you’ll walk past well-preserved nineteenth-century structures to get a feel for this charming town. Head north for Windsor, the next stop on this trip, founded nearly a decade earlier than Williamston. Windsor has a scenic boardwalk that borders the waterfront of what was once a busy port. A customs house and a branch of the State Bank served West Indian and coastal water trade. Just outside town is Historic Hope Plantation, dating from the 1720s. Continue north to the old Colonial capital of Edenton. You’ll have traveled 140 miles from Raleigh to the town that bills itself as the “Prettiest Town in the South,” and upon arrival, you will likely agree that the drive was worth the trip. Edenton certainly is picturesque, but what makes this visit so special is the town’s well-preserved and well-presented history.
Day Trips from Raleigh-Durham

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Day Trips from Raleigh-Durham

by Ralph Grizzle & James L. Hoffman (The Globe Pequot Press)

Travel back to the roots of North Carolina on this day trip, which takes you to three eighteenth-century towns, including North Carolina’s first Colonial capital, Edenton. But before landing in Edenton, stop first in Williamston, east of Raleigh. Founded just three years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Williamston has two National Register Historic Districts that highlight nineteenth- and early twentieth-century life. Along the town’s tree-shaded streets, you’ll walk past well-preserved nineteenth-century structures to get a feel for this charming town.

Head north for Windsor, the next stop on this trip, founded nearly a decade earlier than Williamston. Windsor has a scenic boardwalk that borders the waterfront of what was once a busy port. A customs house and a branch of the State Bank served West Indian and coastal water trade. Just outside town is Historic Hope Plantation, dating from the 1720s. Continue north to the old Colonial capital of Edenton. You’ll have traveled 140 miles from Raleigh to the town that bills itself as the “Prettiest Town in the South,” and upon arrival, you will likely agree that the drive was worth the trip. Edenton certainly is picturesque, but what makes this visit so special is the town’s well-preserved and well-presented history.

©  Ralph Grizzle & James L. Hoffman/The Globe Pequot Press. All Rights Reserved.

Activity Type: Backpacking, Hiking
Nearby City: Williamston
Duration: One day to several days
Season: Year-round
Local Contacts: All contact information for attractions, dining, and lodging are provided in the eTrail.
Driving Directions: Directions to Back in Time: Williamston, Windsor, and Edenton

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May 2018