CSS Neuse & Gov. Caswell Memorial

Colonial Period – Civil War

Glimpses into two of our nation's most pivotal wars can be found in one historic site within the city of Kinston. Here you will explore the celebrated life of Richard Caswell, the first governor of the independent state of North Carolina. You will also see up close the remnants of the ironclad gunboat CSS Neuse, a product of the Confederate navy's ill-fated attempt to regain control of the lower Neuse River and retake the city of New Bern during the Civil War.

CSS Neuse

Neuse Teaching Material

Richard Caswell


If you have some free time and are interested in history and/or connecting with the community, we have a great variety of projects and enriching experiences to offer. If your interested but not sure what you have to offer, come by or give us a call and we can discuss it.

What's New

  • The CSS Neuse has moved!
    On June 23rd, 2012, the ironclad's remains were moved to the CSS Neuse Civil War Interpretive Center at 100 N. Queen Street in downtown Kinston. The new, fully enclosed and climate-controlled facility is open to the public for tours while permanent exhibits are in development. Currently, visitors can view the remains of the CSS Neuse, along with temporary exhibits and an orientation video. The Governor Caswell Memorial (2612 W. Vernon Ave.) also remains open to the public during this time.

Upcoming Events

  • August 18:
    Scout Night at the Museum

    Saturday, 6 pm until Sunday, 8 am
    Have you ever wondered what goes on in a museum at night? Well now you can find out with our overnight program at the museum. Scouts will have the opportunity to learn about the Civil War, soldier, sailors, nurses, textiles, and more!
    Cost is $25.00 per person and PRE-REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED! All Scouts will receive an activity patch. Contact Rachel at 252-526-9600 ext. 222 for more information and to register.
    Payment is available online with a convenience fee. If you would like to pay cash or send a check, please fill out the following form and send payment: https://goo.gl/7EteGS

  • September 15:
    Heirlooms, Antiques, and Militaria

    Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm
    Have you got an old thing laying around that you always wondered just what was? We might be able to help you here at the CSS Neuse Interpretive Center. Due to the variety of interest of our staff members, we stand a pretty fair chance of helping you identify that old button, that strange sword, that mysterious photograph, that piece off of something else that your aunt gave you, or that thing grandfather had rolling around in that drawer for years. We are pretty well versed in firearms from the 18th century through WWII, as well as about any sort of piece of uniform or military equipment likely to have been worn, or brought back as souvenirs by American soldiers. From Sake cups to button boards, shoelaces to cap insignia, we know a little about a lot of things, and a whole lot about a few things. Glass bottles, tools, flags, clothing, toys, ceramics, Native American artifacts, strange rocks or bits of metal you found in a field; whatever it is, bring it in and we'll take a crack at it. If we don't know what it is, we will try to identify it with some of our reference works and online resources. The one thing we can't tell you is what an item is worth, but we can show you where you can get a good idea of the value other people give it. We can even give you some tips on how to best store or treat some of these artifacts. We also want to see your artifacts "raw" . . . that is, uncleaned. Improper cleaning can destroy value or remove labels or markings that may help identify the artifact. We don't mind dirt, cobwebs, rust, or odd smells. Bring one item or a trunk full. We are always open to donations, too, if your artifact would help us tell the story of the Civil War as it relates to Eastern North Carolina.

  • Stay tuned for more upcoming events . . .

View NC DNCR Upcoming Events Calendar

CSS Neuse & Gov. Caswell Memorial Information

Contact Us

CSS Neuse
100 N. Queen St.
Kinston, NC 28501
Phone: (252) 522-2107
Email: cssneuse@ncdcr.gov

Gov. Caswell Memorial
2612 W. Vernon Ave. (U.S. 70 Bus.)
Kinston, NC 28504
Phone: (252) 522-2091
Fax: (252) 527-7036
Email: cssneuse@ncdcr.gov

Hours of Operation

For Neuse:

Tuesday-Saturday, 9 am - 5 pm
(Last guided tour begins at 4 pm.)
Closed Sunday and Monday

For Caswell:

Tuesday-Friday 10 am – 2 pm
Saturday 10 am – 4 pm

Visitors should call ahead, as hours sometimes change unexpectedly. Large groups should call ahead for tour arrangements.


Adults - $5
Seniors (65+) - $4
Active Military (w/ I.D.) - $4
Children (Ages 3 - 12) - $3
Children (Ages 0 - 2) - Free

Special rates for groups of 10 or more. Ask for prices when you schedule group. CSS Neuse Gunboat Association memberships available. Members in good standing receive free admission.

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