Glimpses into two of our nation's most pivotal wars can be found within the city of Kinston at two different historic sites. At the Governor Richard Caswell Memorial, located on Vernon Avenue, you will explore the celebrated life of Richard Caswell, the first governor of the independent state of North Carolina, and his role in establishing North Carolina as part of the United States. 

Hours and Location

CSS Neuse Museum
Tuesday – Saturday 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Closed Sunday, Monday, and most major holidays. 

100 N. Queen St.
Kinston, NC 28501

Caswell Memorial
Friday 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

2612 W. Vernon Ave. (U.S. 70 Bus.)
Kinston, NC 28504

Visitors should call ahead, as hours sometimes change unexpectedly. Large groups should call 252-526-9600, ext. 222 or 221.


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

We are a Blue Star Museum- We offer free admission to active duty military with ID and up to five family members. The program generally runs from late May through the first week of September. Please follow us on social media for updates. 

Special rates for groups of 10 or more. Group rates are $3/per adult and $1/per student. 

Guided Tours

Guided tours of the CSS Neuse Museum and the Governor Richard Caswell Memorial are available upon request. We ask that groups make reservations in advance by calling 252-526-9600, ext. 222 or 221. 

Group Reservations


CSS Neuse Civil War Museum 

At the CSS Neuse Civil War Museum, which is now located downtown, you will see the remains of the Confederate ironclad, the CSS Neuse. The museum's first floor offers visitors valuable insight into Kinston's location, the ship's historical significance, sailor life, and the ship's recovery. The mezzanine level boasts a range of exhibits that showcase the rich history of Lenoir County, including topics such as African Americans, textiles, mourning, and the Civil War in eastern North Carolina. Visitors will have the opportunity to delve into the history of Burnside's Expedition, Battles in Kinston during the war, and the end of the war in North Carolina.

Governor Richard Caswell Memorial
New exhibits were installed in August 2007, rededicating the building to Governor Caswell. Some of the items on display include Caswell's law books, family Bible, and his daughter's tea set. The Caswell Memorial building also houses offices, restrooms, and a gift shop.

Trails, Monuments, Outdoor Exhibits
The Caswell family cemetery is located on the grounds. 

Accessibility at the CSS Neuse Museum 


  • Our museum map, orientation film script, and guided tour script are all available in Spanish.

  • We are now offering Spanish tours quarterly. Please follow us on social media for the date and time.

Guests Who Are Deaf or Hard of Hearing 

  • Sign Language Interpretation for live presentations or programs - is available upon request. Please make requests two weeks in advance by email at

  • Assistive listening devices are available for tours upon request

  • Transcript of our orientation film in normal font and large font

  • Transcript of our guided tour in normal font and large font

Guests Who Are Blind or Low Vision

  • Digital Video Magnifier, Handheld Portable Electronic Reading Aid

  • 3X Large Ultra Bright LED Page Magnifier with 12 Anti-Glare Dimmable LEDs 

  • Large print is available for our self-guided tour

  • Signage for accessibility items with contrasting colors

Guests with Mobility Disabilities 

  • Wheelchairs are available to rent for free

  • Walkers and Cane is available to rent for free 

  • An elevator that goes up to the mezzanine 

  • Accessible seating is available in the A/V room

  • Accessible restroom stalls in both bathrooms

  • Automatic door installation-we are currently working to add automated doors.

Guests with Autism or Sensory Processing Disorders

KultureCity Sensory Inclusive Certification

The certification process entailed the staff at the CSS Neuse Museum being trained by leading medical professionals on how to recognize those guests and fans with sensory needs and how to handle a sensory overload situation. Sensory bags, equipped with noise-canceling headphones (provided by Puro Sound Labs), fidget tools, verbal cue cards, and weighted lap pads will also be available to all guests at the CSS Neuse Museum who may feel overwhelmed by the environment by requesting a bag at the front desk. 

With its new certification, the CSS Neuse Museum is now better prepared to assist guests with sensory sensitivities in having the most comfortable and accommodating experience possible when attending any event at the CSS Neuse Museum. 

Prior to attending an event, families can download the free KultureCity App where one can view what sensory features are available and where they can access them. Also, on the App is the Social Story which will provide a preview of what to expect while enjoying an event at CSS Neuse Museum.

  • Noise-canceling headphones

  • Children’s center activities, autism sensory educational toys, color and learn map tablecloth with washable fabric markers, and interactive STEM toys for brain development.

  • Fidget toys including pop its

Picnic Facilities
Some tables are available on the grounds at the Caswell Memorial. There is ample space available for a picnic. 

Gift Shop
Our gift shop is stocked and supported by our non-profit support group, the Friends of the CSS Neuse Museum. All sales from the gift shop go to support educational programming and events at the CSS Neuse Museum. 

This page was last modified on 08/17/2023