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Mordecai Historic Park

Last updated Jul. 20, 2016 - 3:48 pm
Ellen Mordecai Garden
  • Year 1785 | Acres 3.2 | Landmarks In the heart of downtown Raleigh
  • Mordecai Historic Park was once the site of the largest plantation in Wake County.
  • The Mordecai House is the oldest house in Raleigh on its original location.
  • The recreated 19th century kitchen garden is based on documentation left by Ellen Mordecai in her memoir and letters.
  • Historic outbuildings include the overseer's office and smokehouse, the Allen Kitchen, the Badger-Iredell Law Office, St. Mark's Chapel, and the birthplace of the 17th President, Andrew Johnson.
  • Read about the Mordecai Plantation, the enslaved workers, and the family that lived in the Mordecai House from 1785-1964
  • Please note that handicap parking spaces are available in the parking lot on Mimosa Street, as well as in front of the Visitor Center. The Visitor Center and the first floor of the Mordecai House are wheelchair accessible.

Site Tours & Visitor Center

Visitor Center

Visitor Center & Parking

  • Please begin your trip to Mordecai Historic Park at the Visitor Center. Here you will find tour tickets and park information, as well as the gift shop and meeting space. The permanent exhibit, "The Mordecai Story: Faith, Family, and Community in Raleigh" will be installed in June 2016.
  • PLEASE NOTE: Public tours are not offered when field trip groups are on site in the morning. Please call 919-996-4364 to check on tour availability.
  • The Visitor Center is a short walk from the parking area which lines Mimosa Street. Simply follow the walking signs through the park to the Visitor Center which stands on the corner of Cedar Street and Wake Forest Road. There is handicap parking located at the Visitor Center on the Cedar Street side.

Admission

Admission

  • Tickets for the guided tour may be purchased at the Visitor Center.
  • Tours of the Mordecai house and outbuildings are offered at the top of the hour. Tours are offered at the top of the hour. Tours begin at 10am and the last tour begins at 3pm. Each tour is approximately 50 minutes.
  • Pricing: Adults - $5, Senior - $3, Youth - $3. Children 6 and under are free.
  • Public Tours are not offered when school groups are on site.
  • Please call 919-996-4364 Tuesday – Sunday to check on tour availability.

  • Mordecai House ca. 1785/1826
  • Badger Iredell Law Office ca. 1810
  • Allen Kitchen ca. 1842
  • Ellen Mordecai Garden ca. 1842
  • St. Mark's Chapel ca. 1847

Historic Structures & Landscape

  • Mordecai House ca. 1785/1826
  • Cure barn ca. 1840
  • Overseer’s Office ca 1840
  • Ellen Mordecai Garden ca. 1842
  • Mordecai Spring
  • Allen Kitchen ca. 1842
  • Andrew Johnson Birthplace ca. 1800
  • Badger Iredell Law Office ca. 1810
  • St. Mark's Chapel ca. 1847
  • Bouchall-Danielson House c. 1917

School Field Trips

Admission

Admission

  • School and educational tours are not held on Saturdays.
  • Field trips are free unless otherwise noted.
  • Students will rotate through three of the four programs.

Mordecai House

Artifact and House Program

  • Students will learn how life has changed over time.
  • Students will use their reasoning skills and senses to determine the use of artifacts found within the home.
  • NC DPI Competency Objective: 2nd Grade 3.01, 3.04, 7.01 – 3rd Grade 2.02, 3.02, 3.03 – 4th Grade 2.03, 3.01

Tour

Plantation Slavery Program

  • Students will become aware of the different roles and tasks performed by slaves on the Mordecai Plantation.
  • Students get the chance to dig for artifacts on a mini-archeology dig.
  • NC DPI Competency Objective: 2nd Grade 2.03, 3.02, 3.03, 3.06 – 3rd Grade 3.01, 3.02 – 4th Grade 2.03, 2.04, 3.01

Tour

Andrew Johnson Program

  • Students tour the birthplace of Andrew Johnson, the 17th president of the United States.
  • Students learn about Johnson’s life and his journey from poverty to president.
  • Students learn about impeachment and have a chance to participate in their own impeachment trial!
  • NC DPI Competency Objectives: 2nd Grade 2.01, 2.02, 6.02 – 3rd Grade 1.02, 1.03, 1.05, 2.02, 2.03, 3.01, 7.01 – 4th Grade 1.03, 2.03, 3.01, 3.02, 4.05.

Trolley

Historic Raleigh Trolley Tours

  • Students will step on board the Raleigh Trolley to learn about Raleigh and its past.
  • Students will learn about the founding of Raleigh.
  • Students will see historic sites and landmarks throughout the city.
  • NC DPI Competency Objectives: 2nd Grade 2.01, 3.05, 4.01, 4.03, 6.02 – 3rd Grade 1.02, 2.02, 2.03, 3.01, 3.02, 5.07 – 4th Grade 1.03, 2.03, 3.01, 3.02, 4.02, 4.05.
  • $2 per child with a $50 minimum.

Historic Raleigh Trolley

Trolley

Tours

  • Trolley tours do not operate in January or February.
  • Leaves from Mordecai Historic Park on Saturdays, March through December, at 11am, 12pm, 1pm, and 2pm.
  • Enclosed and air-conditioned.
  • Admission: $10 adults, $4 youth (7-17), $0 children (6 and under)
  • Tours begin and end at Mordecai Historic Park and last approximately one hour.

Charters

Charters

  • One hour private tour of downtown Raleigh
  • $200 (includes trolley, guide and driver)
  • $100 refundable damage deposit (allow approx. 6 weeks)
  • $15 application fee
  • Pick-up and drop off location is Mordecai Historic Park
  • $50 charge for alternate pick up and drop off location

Rentals

Rentals

  • $100/hour (includes trolley and driver)
  • Minimum of two hours
  • $100 refundable damage deposit (allow approx. 6 weeks)
  • $15 application fee
  • Inclusive hours are from your initial pick-up point to final drop-off point

Site Rentals

  • 919-996-4363
Visitor Center

Visitor Center

  • Rental Manager
  • The Visitor Center (can include the exhibit gallery and classroom spaces).
  • Visitor Center classroom space is available from 10am-11pm.
  • Exhibit Gallery is available from 3-11pm.
  • Classroom (Weekdays): Residents - $75/hr, Non-residents - $125/hr.
  • Classroom (Weekends): Resident - $100/hr, Non-residents $150/hr
  • Exhibit Gallery w/ Classroom: Residents - $150/hr, Non-residents - $200/hr
  • All rentals have a 2 hour minimum and a maximum of 8 hours. Please inquire for discounted pricing for rentals of 4 or more hours.
  • Additional fees: $15 application fee, $100 refundable damage deposit fee, $50 alcohol permit fee (if applicable), $80 Visitor Center cleaning fee (if applicable)
  • Please note: all music and alcohol service must end by 10:00pm in all rented spaces. All people must vacate all rented spaces by 11pm. The time between 9:30-11pm is meant to be used to clean up and gather all belongings.

  • Grounds
  • Chapel

Park grounds

  • Mordecai Historic Park grounds (includes St. Mark's Chapel, a small changing room, and the park grounds).
  • St. Mark's Chapel and the park grounds are available from 10am-11pm.
  • St. Mark's Chapel and park grounds: Residents - $100/hr, Non-residents, $150/hr (min - 2hrs, max 8hrs)
  • Additional fees: $15 application fee, $100 refundable damage deposit fee, $50 alcohol permit fee (if applicable), $80 Visitor Center cleaning fee (if applicable)
  • Please note: all music and alcohol service must end by 10:00pm in all rented spaces. All people must vacate all rented spaces by 11pm. The time between 9:30-11pm is meant to be used to clean up and gather all belongings.

Events & Exhibits

Reenactment

Upcoming Events

  • Living History - Kids Craft Day - Saturday, August 6th from 11am-2pm: Come to the Mordecai Historic Park Visitor Center for some crafts and air conditioning! This free event will allow kids of all ages to create crafts from the past, like cornhusk dolls, flower crowns and necklaces, and a cup and ball toy. This event is free and registration is not required.
  • Reclamation: Plays by Female Voices of Color - Saturday, August 13th from 5-7pm. Mordecai Historic Park, in partnership with MOJOAA Performing Arts Company, will present Reclamation, a series of one act plays to be presented on the front porch of the Mordecai House. This event is free and registration is not required.
  • Escape to Freedom: a Theatrical Experience - September 23 and 24 at 6, 7:30, and 9 pm. Join us at Mordecai Historic Park as we present Escape to Freedom in partnership with MOJOAA Performing Arts Company. This event will take participants on an interactive tour of the Mordecai Plantation as seen through the eyes of an enslaved person. Each session will end will a Q&A with Mordecai Historic Park and MOJOAA staff. Participants should be comfortable walking and standing for up to one hour. For more information, please call 919-996-4364. Tickets can be purchased beginning July 26 by visiting RecLink.raleighnc.gov or calling 919-996-4364. Tickets are $15.
  • Haunted Trolley at Mordecai Historic Park - October 21, 28, and 29 at 6:45, 7:45, and 8:45 pm. Step aboard the Haunted Trolley, if you dare, for a nighttime ride through downtown Raleigh. Participants will hear about the ghost stories of the city and make a stop at City Cemetery. Riders beware - you never know what you might encounter! Tickets are $10 and will go on sale beginning July 26. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 919-996-4364 or visit reclink.raleighnc.gov.
  • Haunted Mordecai Lantern Tours at Mordecai Historic Park - October 29 from 5-9:30 pm. Have you always wanted to know what goes on in the Mordecai House at night? Know is your chance to find out, but be careful - you never know what or who you might run into! These special tours are only offered once a year, so don't miss out! Participants should be comfortable walking and standing for up to 30 minutes. Tours begin every 30 minutes. Tickets are $5 and will go on sale beginning July 26. For more information or to purchase tickets, please call 919-996-4364 or visit reclink.raleighnc.gov.
  • Haunted Mordecai FREE Festival - October 29 from 12-4 pm. Join us at Mordecai Historic Park as we celebrate Halloween with this FREE and family friendly festival on our lawn. There will be crafts and games, music, a bounce house, face painting, and costume contests for kids 16 and under beginning at 1pm. A food vendor will be on site with food to purchase. This event is FREE and registration is not required. Please call 919-996-4364 for more information.
  • Mordecai Holidays Open House - December 10th from 10 am-4 pm and December 11 from 1-4 pm. Come get your holiday season started with a visit to Mordecai Historic Park for our annual Holiday Open House! Guests are invited to tour the Mordecai House at their leisure to see how the Mordecai Family would have celebrated the holidays. Each room will be decorated from a different time period, beginning in colonial times through World War II. Then step into the plantation kitchen and watch a traditional holiday meal be prepared. This event is free and registration is not required. Please call 919-996-4364 for more information.
  • Santa's Trolley at Mordecai Historic Park - December 16, 17, and 18 at 5, 6, and 7 pm. Santa's sleigh has broken down and he is lost in Raleigh! We need your help to find him before Christmas Eve arrives! Step aboard the Raleigh Trolley and help Holly the Elf look for Santa in downtown Raleigh. Tickets are $10 and will go on sale beginning July 26. For more information or to purchase tickets, please call 919-996-4364 or visit reclink.raleighnc.gov.
  • Mordecai Holidays Lantern tours - December 10th from 5-9pm. Join us at Mordecai Historic Park and take a step back in time to Christmas from years past. These guided tours will take participants through the Mordecai House and outbuildings to watch and as the holidays are celebrated by the Mordecai Family, the enslaved people on the plantation, and Civil War soldiers at camp. Tickets are $5. Advanced registration is recommended. For tickets please visit reclink.raleighnc.gov or call 919-996-4364.
  • Shape Note Singing - Every fourth Sunday from 2-4pm: Come to St. Mark's Chapel at Mordecai Historic Park to enjoy the Triangle Shape Note Singers. Guests are welcome to join in, or just sit and listen. This event is free and registration is not required.

Volunteers & Members

  • 919-996-4362
Volunteers

Volunteers

  • Docent Program – This program offers training in local and site-specific history. Volunteers then conduct guided tours of the Mordecai House and outbuildings
  • School Field Trips – Almost 10,000 students visit Mordecai Historic Park every year. Join us in our mission to educate students about how life has changed over time
  • Special Events – Several large events are held each year that highlight the history and offerings of Mordecai. Haunted Mordecai and Santa's Trolley are two of our most popular events. Volunteers are needed to assist with a range of activities including special guided tours, crafts, and games
  • Grounds Beautification – There are always projects that need to be done on the grounds and gardens. Volunteers help keep Mordecai looking its best
  • Contact Fran Hunter

Membership

Membership

  • Free admission to Mordecai Historic Park and City of Raleigh Museum
  • Free admission to select site events, museum events, tours and lectures
  • 10% gift shop discount at Mordecai and City Museum
  • 10% discount on all site rentals
  • The Raleigh Register Program Newsletter
  • Join the Mordecai Square Association! Your donation will help revitalize and preserve one of North Carolina’s most significant historic sites.
  • As a member you also enjoy cross program perks at the City of Raleigh Museum, The Raleigh Trolley, Mordecai Historic Park, Borden, Tucker, and Pope House Museum.
  • Membership Form

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