Hamlet Depot & Museums (Amtrak Station)

Victorian-era depot said to be the most photographed train station in the eastern United States.  Built in 1900 by the Seaboard Air Line Railroad (now CSX Transportation), added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1971, and fully restored in 2004, the hands-on exhibits, visual displays and interactive consoles encourage both young and old alike to explore the history of the Seaboard Railroad and Hamlet.  From our oral histories to our model railroad to the Tornado steam locomotive replica, we offer something fun for everyone.  Our complex includes the Depot (Amtrak Station), the Tornado Steam building, the visitors center which features changing exhibits, and the Main Street park with an engine and caboose.  Excellent vantage point for watching trains in the area.  Still an active Amtrak location with two ts daily.  We're the Number one place to train watch in North Carolina.

2 W. Main Street, Hamlet, NC  28345 / 910-582-0603/ www.hamlethistoricdepot.org

Richmond County Tourism Visitor Center & Richmond County Museum

Richmond County Tourism Visitor Center has area information and brochures for counties throughout North Carolina.  The Richmond County Historical Museum contains memorabilia from Richmond County, including education, sports, racing history, railroad, agriculture, military, and public safety.  The Visitor Center and Museum are located in the historical Seaboard Railroad Depot.

101 West Broad Avenue, Rockingham, NC  28379/ 910-895-9057/ www.visitrichmondcounty.com

 Little River Vineyards and Winery

Little River Winery combines the best elements of wineries throughout the world.  Winemaking techniques developed and used in France, Italy, Argentina, South Africa and Napa Valley are being implemented and used at Little River.  From our lush vineyards, gorgeous southern climate and the historic rolling countryside to the lazy Little River flowing in the background, Little River Vineyards and Events is the perfect backdrop for your special event or wedding.  We make it our goal to share our vineyards, farm and historical facilities to ensure that each and every couple goes home with a magical experience as they cross the thresholod into their brand new lives as one.

1907 NC 73 West, Mount Gilead, NC  27306 / 704-201-6343 / www.littleriverwines.com

Richmond Community Theatre

Celebrating the theatre for more than 45 years, the Richmond County Community Theatre has offered fams of the arts productions of highly acclaimed plays and musicals such as "Chicago," "West Side Story," and "Arsenic and Old Lace."  Check our website for schedule.

111 E. Washington Street, Rockingham, NC  28379 / 910-997-3765 / www.richmondcommunitytheatre.org

Our creative community has inspired artists for generations.   Here, art, theatre and music flourish inside the walls  of our thriving community's many venues.  Come be inspired!  Our venues range from kids museums, history museums, railroad museums, American Indian Heritage museums, community theatre, music venues, and arts of all media forms.

 The Berry Patch

We are the home of the world's largest strawberry building.  We specialize in growing & retailing strawberries, fresh produce & homemade ice cream.

351 Cargo Rd., Ellerbe, NC  28338 / 910-652-3276 / www.worldslargeststrawberry.com  

 Ellerbe Springs Inn & Campground

Come for a quiet evening - perhaps a leisurely walk around the pond or a friendly game of chess in front of the fire.  Get a jumpstart on your day with a delicious breakfast.  A csmpground with new facilities and hookups is adjacent to the Inn, for a weekend gateway, or for those traveling the road.  We are also open as a beautiful reception and wedding venue.

2537 North US Highway 73, Ellerbe, NC  28338 / 910-652-5600 / www.ellerbe-springs.com

Robert L. and Elizabeth S. Cole Auditorium and Community Center

A 1,000-seat performing arts space and banquet rooms for nearly 300.  Featuring performances as part of the DeWitt Series and Cole Community Series as well as rental events.

1042 W. Hamlet Avenue, Hamlet, NC  28345 / 910-582-3400 / www.richmondcc.edu

The Rankin Museum of American Heritage

Rare and unique artifacts & specimens comprise the museum's holdings of archaeology, paleontology, natural history.  Native American history and early Americana.  One of the best Native American artifact collections in the state.  Animal mounts from all over the world, including a life-size polar bear, Kodiak bear, American bison, mountain lion, and a 14 ft. alligator.  The animal mounts share billing with an enormous fossil collection which spans 500 million years; from the Cambrian Period to the Pleistocene.  Early Americana exhibits contain representations of 19th century life in North Carolina.  Antique farm tools, an operable loom, early musical instruments, and possibly the only 500 gallon turpentine still in the East are but a few of the many items on display.

131 W. Church Street, Ellerbe, NC  28338 / 910-652-6378 / www.rankinmuseum.org

Railroad: 

Located in a direct line from Wilmington (east) to Charlotte (west), Richmond County became an important rail link early in North Carolina history.  When it later developed that a major north-south railroad crossed this east-west line in Richmond County, a major large rail center quickly grew in Hamlet. During World War I, train loads of soldiers would pass through Hamlet, met by volunteer groups with food and refreshment.  There are many pictures of these and other railroad events in the recently published “More Than A Memory” available at the Hamlet Public Library.  

The Richmond County Historical Society supported the City of Hamlet in its plans to relocate and renovate the old Seaboard Airline Railway depot.  The City of Hamlet took leadership in the project, applying for North Carolina Dept. of Transportation and other grants including the Cole Foundation. The total costs were approximately $11 million. [Hamlet Station] By 2004, the station, Hamlet Depot and Museums,  has been relocated and restoration completed.   The restored building features a railroad museum, a large room for community use, and a park.  An extensive collection of railroad artifacts can be seen at the National Railroad Museum and Hall of Fame  located at 23 Hamlet Avenue in Hamlet.

Rockingham, six miles away, did not have the large rail industry enjoyed by Hamlet, but nevertheless was an important center due to the large textile industry.  At one point, in the 1920’s, Rockingham was the site of the Rockingham Railroad Company, a small railroad line from Rockingham to points in South Carolina.  In 1999 the Historical Society was offered the old Rockingham Seaboard RR depot with the condition the building be moved.  Built in 1891, the station was closed in the 1970s.  The Society acquired property for the station.  The station was moved in 2004 and the restored Rockingham Seaboard Rail Road depot, currently the Richmond County Tourism Visitor Center and Richmond County Museum, is located at the intersection of US Highway 74 and US Highway One overlooking the same tracks it once served, about 400 yards further East of its original location.  A formal Historical Society dedication was held in the Spring of 2007.

Agritourism:

Richmond County's history is rooted in agriculture.  While other communities have lost that heritage, ours is still alive and thriving today with small family farms, destination produce stands such as the Berry Patch, peach orchards like the Bynum Peach Farm, and our very own Little River Wines.  Richmond County is defined by our authentic, small southern towns.  

 Bynum Peach Farm

Bynum Farm is a 91 year old farm located in the northern end of Richmond County in the Windblow community.  When you buy peaches from us, you get what you pay for.  Our baskets, bags, boxes, etc. are always full.  We also do not believe in storing peaches on cold storage.  Cold storage works well for the grower but bad for the consumer; Cold storage kills shelf life.  Tree-ripened peaches are picked daily.

119 Gallimore Road, Hwy. 73 East, Ellerbe, NC  28338 / 910-652-2204 / www.bynumpeachfarm.com

Town Creek Indian Mound State Historic Site

A glimpse of pre-Columbian life in the Piedmont.  The visitor center has interpretive exhibits, as well as audiovisual programs that bring alive a rich cultural heritage from the buried past.  Self-guided tours of the rebuilt structures and mound are available.  About the 11th century A.D., a new cultural tradition emerged in the Pee Dee River Valley that gave rise to complex societies.  They built earthern mounds for their spiritual and political leaders, engaged in widespread trade, supported craft specialists, and celebrated a new kind of religion.  Excavations began at Town Creek in 1937 and continued for 50 years.  The reconstructed cerremonial center includes the mound and major temple, the minor temple, and burial house or mortuary.

509 Town Creek Mound Rd., Mount Gilead, NC 27306 / 910-439-6802 / www.nchistoricsites.org

Railroad Museum & Hall of Fame

Opened in 1976, the National Railroad Museum & Hall of Fame is dedicated to preserving railroad history - especially local history.  Discover why Hamlet was once dubbed the "Hub of the Seaboard," while viewing various displays, tographs, plaques, rolling stock and model train display.  Free Admission.

120 E. Spring Street, Hamlet, NC  28345 / 910-582-3555 / www.facebook.com/nationalrrmuseumhof

Bostick Schoolhouse

The interior of the schoolhouse has been restored so as to become a time-period piece of exactly how one-room schoolhouses looked back in the late 1800s.  After falling into disrepair, it was completely refurbished in 1998 and added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.  The Bostick Schoolhouse sits on private land and visitation requires an appointment.

578 Clayton Carriker Road, Ellerbe, NC  28338 / 910-652-5821

Discovery Kids-Rockingham

An adventure in learning through play; Discovery Place Kids offers unique opportunities for learning for children from birth through age ten.  Through play, children explore their world, discover how to get along with others, test their skills and muscles, experiment with new ideas and feel competent enough to try different activities.  This children's museum features developmentally appropriate experiences that encourage interactive learning through play.

233 E. Washington St., Rockingham, NC  28379 / 910-997-5266 / www.rockingham.discoveryplacekids.org

Heritage:


In Richmond County, NC we have more than a history, we have a heritage.  Founded in 1779, the county grounds were under foot of soldiers in both the Revolutionary and Civil Wars.  In 1865, Union General William Tecumseh Sherman's army marched right through Rockingham on their way to Richmond, Virginia. Many of the mansions that run along Fayetteville Road in Rockingham, NC date back to the antebellum period, and  the city of Hamlet later became an east coast railway hub at the turn of the century.  


The Bostick Schoolhouse in  Ellerbe,  NC, is one of few surviving one-room schoolhouses in the state and offers a glimpse of what teaching was like in the old days.  The schoolhouse and several other buildings throughout Richmond County, including the Leak-Wall House in Rockingham, and the Ellerbe Springs Inn in Ellerbe, are officially  listed with the National Register of Historic Places.  Read more about Richmond County on the Richmond County Historical Society website or stop in the Richmond County Visitor Center and purchase one of the many great books on Richmond County's rich history.

The Leak-Wall House

The historic Leak-Wall House, built by John Wall Leak in 1853, was acquired by the Richmond County Historical Society in September of 1995.  The interior is furnished in Victorian period antiques, including some pieces original to the house.  The interior was remodeled in 1903 prior to the wedding of Annie Wall to Howard Alexander Foushee.  There has been very minor changes to the interior since this time.  Today the house is available for receptions, weddings, parties, and other events.

Rockingham, NC  28379 / 910-895-1660 / email: rchs84@yahoo.com