Old Salem Museums & Gardens, located in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, is one of the most storied and historically significant sites in the United States. Situated on what used to be a historic Moravian settlement, Old Salem offers visitors an opportunity to explore the town’s deep history and its many tales. The museums, parks, and gardens available today provide a fantastic, captivating look at the heart of this remarkable American community, and it’s a must-see for any lover of American history. Old Salem, as we know it today, began life as a Moravian settlement back in 1766. The Moravian Church was interested in the area and decided to build a town there five years after the country gained independence from the United Kingdom. A group of Moravians arrived in Salem (which would later become part of the Winston-Salem area, then and now) in search of religious freedom and eventually set up the very first store in the area and the very first public house. Several of the original buildings from these early days still stand in some form today, providing visitors to Old Salem with a unique glimpse into the distant past. One of the standout structures is the Single Brothers’ House. Built in 1769, the building features a mix of original and restored features, including some fine examples of the original stonework and detailed designs. Learn more here.
Another fascinating building is the God’s Acre, the town’s quiet cemetery, which has been occupied since 1770 and provides a fascinating look at the town’s past. The Cobblestone House, which has been standing since 1797, is thought to be the oldest domestic building of its type in the state of North Carolina, and it too stands today as a quiet reminder of the town’s early days. The museums sprouted up on Old Salem offer the most detailed and comprehensive look at the area’s past. There are three major museums in place at Old Salem. The first is the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA), which focuses on the early South’s furniture, art, and artifacts. The other two museums are the Moravian Gallery, which includes a trove of fascinating manuscripts which give insight into the history of Old Salem and its people, and the Old Salem Historic District, which shows the history of Salem through its historic architecture. In addition to its museums, Old Salem also has several beautiful gardens, parks, and outdoor attractions, which provide an ideal way to relax and take in the beauty of this historic area. Visitors to Old Salem can stroll through the Anna Jane Joyner Herb Garden and enjoy the blooming roses. One can take several walking tours as they meander around the old buildings and listen to stories of Salem’s long past. Learn more about Camel City BBQ Factory: Taking Winston-Salem to Delicious New Heights.