Historic Bath anniversary kicks off with special event

Published 5:50 pm Friday, January 2, 2015

From Historic Bath State Historic Site


In 2015, Historic Bath will begin celebrating two anniversaries: 310 years as the First Town and 300 years as the First Port of North Carolina! In conjunction with the anniversary celebration, Historic Bath State Historic Site will offer a free program open to all ages.

On Jan. 15, the “First Town, First Port” Kick-Off event held at the Historic Bath Site’s Visitor Center will offer attendees the opportunity to be the first to see the new hallway exhibit beginning at 6:30 p.m.. The exhibit designed by Historic Bath Site’s Assistant Manager, Jamie Mesrobian, will allow visitors to begin learning about, and become interested in, the “First Town, First Port” history of Bath.

“It was very exciting for me to be able to design this exhibit space,” said Mesrobian. “I approached it with a ‘less is more’ attitude. I want the public to be able to learn, but also want them to ask questions and think about the true meaning of Historic Bath’s ‘First Town, First Port’ history.” Mesrobian also noted that she worked with Marty Mathews and Amy Sawyer in Raleigh, with the Department of Cultural Resources for feedback and production of the overall design, to ensure accuracy and to set up the exhibit. “There are beautiful colors in this exhibit with some wonderful images. I think people are going to find it very visually appealing! Marty and Amy have been a huge help in creating this exhibit space.”

Along with unveiling the new hallway exhibit, there will be a lecture given by Ed Hodges. The talk will include topics such as why there are two known and celebrated dates for the beginning of the port and the significance of the port to Bath and North Carolina history. The lecture will be held in the orientation theatre in the Visitor Center at 7 p.m. with donations being encouraged to help support future events and lecture opportunities at the historic site.

Historic Bath State Historic Site is one of the sites within the Department of Cultural Resources’ Division of State Historic Sites & Properties that people can visit to learn of our state’s interesting and varied history. Historic Bath is also a member of the Historic Albemarle Tour.

Bath is a town of firsts! The town became North Carolina’s first town; it was incorporated in 1705. Christopher Gale, the first chief justice of the colony, resided here. Bath became the first official port of entry for the colony, the location of the first public library in North Carolina and the first shipyard was established here. Visiting Bath today, it is easy to see how this protected little harbor appealed to early settlers, and, of course, Blackbeard.

To begin your experience, come by the Visitor Center to purchase tickets to take a guided tour through our two historic homes, the Palmer-Marsh House (1751) and the Joseph Bonner House (1830). Watch the 15-minute orientation video and visit our museum store. The Van Der Veer House hosts exhibits, and there are gardens, family graveyards belonging to our historic homes and Bonner’s Point to explore.

Tickets and information are available at the Visitor Center: 207 Carteret Street, Bath, Tuesdays through Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (final house tour begins at 4 p.m.). For more information about the “First Town, First Port” kick-off event, directions, tickets, special events and programs, group tours, weddings and parties, and more, please call 252-923-3971 or visit: www.bath.nchistoricsites.com.