after the confederate victory of the first battle of fort fisher. union general ulysses s. grant ordered a joint army and naval assault on fort fisher. the second battle of fort fisher was fought between january 13 th and january 15 th 1865. admiral david d. porter assembled over fifty war ships off the coast of the cape fear peninsula to shell fort fisher. the forces of general charles j. paine's colored division was to attack the fort from the north and the forces of general adelbert ames was to attack the fort from the cape fear river. the massave naval barrage was too much for the confederate defenders of fort fisher and the union finally captured the fort. the loss of fort fisher and nearby fort anderson led to the union occupation of wilmington. today the remains of fort fisher are a number of hills at kure beach. over the decades hurricanes and erosion have eradicated much of the original fort. fort fisher is a very interesting place to visit for students of civil war history. see the attached web sites for more information.
fort fisher is located on US 421 18 miles southeast of downtown wilmington at kure beach.
the fort fisher civil war museum is a must see spot on a visit to fort fisher. the museum has exhibits and maps explaining the battle of fort fisher and an interesting collection of civil war relics.
the fort fisher civil war museum is located at the fort fisher historic site in kure beach. kure beach is 18 miles southeast of wilmington on US 421.
brunswick town was founded in 1726 by maurice moore. brunswick town was a major pre-revolutionary port on the cape fear river. two successive royal governors of north carolina lived in brusnwick town. the town began to decline in 1770 when the capital of north carolina moved to new bern. in 1776 british troops destroyed the town during the revolutionary war. in 1842 the remains of brunswick town became part of orton plantation. duing the civil war fort anderson was built on top of the foundations of the town. today the only remaining structure is the ruins of st. phillip's anglican church and graveyard. brunswick town and fort anderson are very interesting places to visit for those interested in colonial and civil war history.
from downtown wilmington take US 74 east to the belville exit. take river road (SR 133) south to orton road s.e. fort anderson and brunswick town is about 18 miles southwest of wilmington.
fort anderson is a confederate earthen fort built on the site of brunswick town on the cape fear river. fort anderson was built to protect wilmington from union attack from the southwest of the city. after the fall of fort fisher on the cape fear peninsula in january 1865 admiral david d. porter sailed up the cape fear river and shelled fort anderson. general adelbert ames forces attacked fort anderson from the west. after a short battle confederate general johnson hagood was forced to abandon the fort. the fall of fort fisher and fort anderson led to the union occupation of wilmington in february 1865. fort anderson and the site of brunswick town is a very interesing place to visit for those interested in colonial and civil war history. see the attached web sites for more information.
from downtown wilmington take US 74 west to the belville exit. take river road (SR133) south to orton road s.e. fort anderson is about 18 miles southwest of downtown wilmington.
located ten miles east of downtown wilmington is the town of carolina beach. carolina beach offers a white sand atlantic beach, scores of good restaurants and bars, and ocean front hotels. carolina beach has much to offer tourist visiting the cape fear area. from downtown wilmington take US 421 east to carolina beach. for more information see the attached web site.
the cape fear north carolina aquarium is one of three aquariums in north carolina. this interesting aquarium has low country ecosystem exhibts, fresh and salt water fish tanks, and a repitle zoo. a fun and educational place to visit when traveling with children. the cape fear aquarium is located at the fort fisher state park at kure beach. from downtown wilmington take US 421 east 15 miles past carolina beach to fort fisher state park. for admission and times see the attached web site.
fort fisher was a earthen confederate fort located on the southern tip of the cape fear peninsula. because of it's strategic position at the mouth of the cape fear river fort fisher was nicknamed the "gibraltar of the confederacy". between december 7 th and december 27 th 1964 the forces of union general benjamin bulter laid seige on fort fisher. the confederate defenders of fort fisher were commanded by general robert f. hoke and colonel william lamb. the union failed to capture fort fisher and general butler was relieved of his command. pictured is the fort fisher monument. fort fisher is a very interesting place to visit for students of civil war history. for more information see the attached web sites.
fort fisher is located 18 miles southeast of downtown wilmington on US 421 at kure beach.
Although this church is within the downtown area, and therefore, not technically off-beaten, I thought I would include it here for the history of this area as you might pass by it.
From their website:
The establishment of St. James Parish occurred in November 1729 when the General Assembly of the colony of Carolina approved legislation which said: "The Southernmost Boundary of the Province shall be and is hereby appointed a separate and district parish by the name of St. James."
Many years passed before the first church building was completed in 1751. In order to finish the church, the General Assembly levied an annual tax of one shilling and four pence on all taxes of the parish for three years.
During the American Revolution in 1781, St. James faced first of many crises when it was seized by British troops under Lord Cornwallis and converted into a stable and riding school for Tarleton's dragoons.
In the early 1830s, the members of St. James Parish decided to build a small chapel near Wrightsville Beach. The Lebanon Chapel was to serve those members of St. James who lived in the vicinity of Greenville, Wrightsville, Masonboro and Middle Sounds, and those who vacationed in the area during the summer months.
In 1839, construction began on our present church edifice. Considered to be an excellent example of neo-gothic architecture, the present church was consecrated in 1840 by Bishop Ives. To the right of the sanctuary is the painting "Ecce Homo". The painting has been attributed to Francisco Pacheco (1564-1654) – a Spanish painter, teacher, and scholar.
Twenty-five years later, St. James was again occupied by an adversary, but this time it was Federal Troops during the final stages of the Civil War. At this time the keys to the church were taken and all furnishings ripped out. The church was used as a hospital during this time of national crisis. Recovering slowly from the war the people of St. James found solace through common worship and fellowship.
The graveyard is the sole remaining physical connection with the original church building. The last burial in the churchyard was in 1850 when Oakdale Cemetery was established and private burials within the city were prohibited by law. Among the historic tombstones is one marking the burial site of Thomas Godfrey, author of “The Prince of Parthia,” thought to be the first attempt at dramatic composition in America. Another marks the grave of Cornelius Harnett, patriot and signer of the Articles of Confederation, who died a prisoner of the British during the occupation of the city. Major George Washington Glover, husband of Mary Baker Eddy, is also buried here.
Through the generosity of some of its members, the 20th century shined brightly upon St. James with the addition of the Parish House in 1902. In 1948 a new kitchen was donated and in 1951 and 1955 property was purchased, Milton Hall was constructed and the MacRae House acquired. The Church House as it is now known was designed by Henry Bacon, the architect who designed the Lincoln Memorial.
The 21st century began with the purchase of the old firehouse on the corner of Fourth and Dock Streets in February 2000. In its place now a beautiful multipurpose building named Perry Hall, which is dedicated to the Glory of God and for the spiritual, physical, and social nourishment of St. James and the Wilmington community. With the completion of the project, the St. James complex incorporates an entire city block.
You'll see this church at 25 S. Third Street, close to the Market Street intersection
Wrightsville Beach is one of three major beach destinations in the area. The others are Carolina Beach and Kure Beach. The white sands and large homes make Wrightsville an impressive beach and I noticed that the crowds seemed very family-friendly.
This is the entrance to the Orton Plantaion in Brunswick. When I noticed that there is an admission charge, I decide it wouldn't be worth the heat of the July day, but the driveway sure was impressive. Just look at those trees!
This picnicking and walking park has been newly renovated for safety and handicap access.
The restroom facilities are near the parking area and not far from the picnic tables (with grills) that dot the main part of the park. There are playgrounds for the kids, athletic fields for group activites, blacktopped ball courts and a recreation center for indoor activities (like table games and arts/crafts. There are a few walking paths on the north and west ends of the park where some minimal birding can be done in early morning hours.
New police patrols guarantee the safety of park visitors.
This is a nice park to spend a few hours relaxing when on a busy vacation or work trip.
The park is presently going through a second round of renovation and may be closed for an extended period of time. This is to improve the park and the Parks Department does not want anyone to get hurt during the reconstruction project. Just call (910) 341-7855 during this period to be sure the ark will be available when you need it.
to get there:
1101 Manley Avenue
US17 (Market Street) runs through Wilmington. US17 forks into Princess Place Drive going west and that road connects with Manley Avenue. go north on Manley and see the park signs
Southport is a quaint little town 30 miles south of Wilmington and is also a gateway to Bald Head Island.