City of Raleigh Museum

Historic Resources and Museum Program

Last updated Apr. 17, 2019 - 12:06 pm
  • CORmuseum
  • CORmuseum in the Brigs Hardware Building
  • Welcome to the CORmuseum
  • A J Fletcher Gallery
  • School Programs at the CORmuseum

The City of Raleigh Museum is located on Fayetteville Street, Raleigh's "Main Street" and the center of downtown.

Housed in a historic former hardware store, the museum is dedicated to preserving and interpreting the history of North Carolina's capital city while envisioning its future. The museum curates temporary and permanent exhibits about the city's people, places, and resources, maintains a collection of approximately 5,000 artifacts, and offers educational programming and tours. Visit Friends of CORmuseum for information on supporting the museum.

Celebrate Raleigh History Month at COR

The City of Raleigh is more than 200 hundred year's old! Experience the City's past with special walking tours and a lecture during Raleigh History Month in April.

Learn all about the Civil War when Raleigh teetered between destruction and salvation. Or, discover a few behind-the-scenes secrets of building the museum's Dorothea Dix Park exhibit or some little known facts about Raleigh's architecture.

For tickets and a full list of events visit our Raleigh History Month page.


220 Fayetteville Street Raleigh, NC 27601 | Get Directions
Phone: 919-996-2220

Site Features & Hours

Cor Logo

Assistant Director: Megan Raby

Sunday: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Monday: Closed
Tuesday through Saturday: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Admission is now FREE daily! A recommended donation of $5 for adults can be placed in our donation box in the gift shop.


  • Walking Tours of Fayetteville Street (See Events section for details)
  • School Programs
  • Exhibits
  • Accessible
  • Gift Shop
  • Special Events
  • Volunteer Program
  • Membership


Opened in 1865, the hardware store thrived and soon outgrew its original building. Completed in 1874, a new building was erected on the same site and was heralded as "the tallest building in east Carolina and Raleigh’s first skyscraper." In 1994, after 120 years downtown, the hardware business was relocated. Three years later, the A.J. Fletcher Foundation and Preservation North Carolina teamed together to acquire and rehabilitate the structure. The City of Raleigh Museum occupies the first and lower levels of the building.

Read more about the history of the Briggs Building


COR Gallery

The City of Raleigh Museum's lobby, first floor gallery and lower-level classroom are available for functions such as weddings, cocktail parties, buffet receptions, fundraisers, seminars, and workshops.

Amenities include:

• Beautiful historic former storefront with original floors, tall ceilings, and unique architectural details
• Central downtown location
• Tables and chairs included in rental
• Restrooms and small kitchen on lower level
• On street parking and conveniently located parking decks.

Lobby Gallery and A.J. Fletcher Foundation Gallery

The Lobby Gallery and A.J. Fletcher Foundation Gallery, which may be rented separately or together, make an ideal backdrop to celebrate important milestones.

The gallery can accommodate standing buffet receptions for up to 150 guests or 100 seated. The lobby can accommodate standing receptions for up to 100 guests or 80 seated.

Woman’s Club of Raleigh Classroom (Lower Level)

The Woman’s Club of Raleigh Classroom provides a comfortable environment for business meetings, seminars, or workshops. The classroom can accommodate up to 50 guests.

Museum Rental

The museum is available for rent outside business hours, which are Tuesday-Saturday from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., and Sunday from 1-4 p.m.


For further information, contact Lynda Fuller or call 919-996-2220 to discuss availability of the museum on your desired date.


Let Us March On: Raleigh's Journey Towards Civil Rights recounts the forty-year period from the mid-1930s to the mid-1970s as the city struggled toward equal rights for all. The exhibit covers desegregation in schools and institutions of higher education as well as the efforts of individuals, both black and white, who worked for integration. 

The People's Politics: Local Democracy in Raleigh. How does local government affect you? Does your opinion matter? Can you make a difference? The City of Raleigh Museum will explore these questions in its newest exhibit. This exhibit tells the story of city government and democracy at a local level, from the election of Raleigh's first mayor in 1795 to issues facing current and future mayors. Using research from city council minutes and artifacts from the museum's collection, this interactive exhibit highlights the citizen role in law-making, giving visitors the opportunity to examine significants decisions from Raleigh's past, and cast their vote on current challenges facing citizens and leaders of our growing city. 

Raleigh's City Flag: Lost and Found. Did you know Raleigh is one of only 450 cities with a flag? How did the flag come into existence? Who designed it and what does it mean? Come learn the story behind one of Raleigh's most visible symbols. This exhibit tells the story of the long journey of the city's most iconic emblem. 

Our War: Voices of Raleigh's World War II Veterans features the voices of veterans who experienced war in vastly different ways despite being involved in the same conflict. Though 70 years have passed, many personal events of the war are fresh in the minds of veterans. By sharing their stories, these veterans give us a revealing look at what it was like to grow up in 1930s Raleigh and join a segregated military. By collecting their stories in their own words it is hoped the exhibit will be a testament to the varied contributions of Raleigh's diverse residents.

“You Really Stuck It To Me Today”: The Political Cartoons of Dwane Powell: A retrospective of the nationally syndicated work of political cartoonist and area resident Dwane Powell. Titled “You really stuck it to me today”: The Political Cartoons of Dwane Powell,” the free exhibit features more than 20 cartoons from Powell’s childhood to the present, as well as sketchbooks, artifacts of the cartoonist’s trade, and an original mural. “You really stuck it to me today” will be on display through 2019.

Events & Programs

Walking Tours

Historic Fayetteville Street Walking Tours
Every Saturday

2 p.m.

The City of Raleigh Museum will offer walking tours of Fayetteville Street every Saturday at 2 p.m. Tours will begin at the museum, travel around downtown viewing historic landmarks and sites, and end back at the museum. The tours will last approximately one hour. Tours will be offered every Saturday at 2 p.m. Rates: Adults $10; Youth 7-17 $4; Children 6 & under - Free.

Field Trips and Educational Programs

Briggs Building

Here at the City of Raleigh Museum, we strive to make history come alive! Our goal is to provide a variety of hands-on programs that will engage students, and get them excited about their local history. Our programs use local historic sites, artifacts, and photographs. Many of our programs correspond to exhibits currently on display at the museum. Some programs will have recommended grade levels, and some can be adapted to multiple grade levels. These programs can be a fun and unique way to meet NC Standard Course of Study goals in Social Studies, English, African-American Studies, and Art.

If you are interested in registering your class for a program, follow these steps:

1.) Take a look at our program offerings and their corresponding essential standard.

2.) Fill out all necessary information on the Education Program Request Form and make sure it is correct.

3.) Choose 3 programs to fill out your day. Programs are offered Tuesday - Friday.

4.) Have a few dates in mind, as your initial date may be taken!

5.) Wait for us to confirm your trip and details!

Education Program Offerings - COR Museum

City of Raleigh Museum

Program Name & Description

Recommended Grade Level

NC Essential Standards

Symbols of Raleigh – Students will learn why symbols have been selected to represent the City of Raleigh and how they are reflected in the community. They will also examine the city flag to identify these symbols. Using their understanding of why symbols/flags are selected, they will design their own symbol/flag that will represent themselves.


K.V.1; K.V.2; K.CX.1; K.CR.1; 1.V.1; 1.V.2; 1.CX.1; 1.CR.1; 2.V.1; 2.V.2; 2.CX.1; 2.CR.2;

Planning a Kid Friendly Community – Students will plan their own city based on what they know about their own community.


K.E.1; K.C&G.1;

1.H.1; 1.E.1;


1.C.1; 2.C&G.1; 2.C&G.2; 2.C.1;

Fayetteville Street Time Lapse – Students will use historic photos of Fayetteville Street to explore Raleigh has changed over time. They will learn how to analyze photos as a primary source. 

K-2, 3-5

K.H.1; 1.H.1; 2.H.1; 3.H.1; 3.H.2; 4.H.1; 4.H.2; 4.G.1; 5.C.1;

Raleigh Then – Students will receive an overview on Raleigh history including: Sir Walter Raleigh, the Lost Colony, William Christmas, the planned city, becoming the capital of NC, and basic facts about Raleigh


3.H.1; 3.H.2; 3.C.1; 4.H.1; 4.H.2; 4.G.1; 5.H.1;

Fayetteville Street Walking Tour – This tour spans the length of Fayetteville St (from the Capitol Building to Memorial Hall.) Examine some of the buildings, both historic and modern. Learn about events that helped shape downtown Raleigh. Discover Raleigh’s “Main Street” and the history that surrounds it.


3.H.1; 3.H.2; 4.H.1; 4.H.2; 4.G.1;

City Planners – Design your own city! You and a team of fellow city planners, will learn what is involved with planning a city, and realize those plans through a physical model. Will your city be Sports-focused? Education-focused? Historically-focused? Business-focused? A Metropolis that tries to incorporate everything? What kind of city will yours be?


3.E.1; 4.G.1; 4.E.1; 5.E.1;

People’s Politics – Students will learn about city government and how it operates. They will use new knowledge to debate and vote on a community related topic.


3.H.1; 3.C&G.1; 3.C&G.2; 4.C&G.1; SL.2.1; SL.3.1; SL.4.1; SL.5.1;

Briggs Building – Students will learn about Raleigh’s first skyscraper, the Brigg’s family, and will examine artifacts. Artifacts will be historic tools once sold at Briggs Hardware


2.H.1; 2.E.1

Civil Rights Protest Songs – Examine some Protest Songs from the Civil Rights Movement, the message they communicate (and related themes,) and the events that inspired them. Compare protest songs from the Civil Rights Movement to modern protest songs. Exercise you songwriting abilities by writing your own protest song. 


3.C&G.2; 3.C.1; 3.CR.1; 4.C.1; 4.CR.1; 5.CR.1;

Civil Rights Photo Analysis – Analyze photos from the Civil Rights Movement, learn the events that inspired them, and discuss what the subjects might have felt at the time. Also learn how the events depicted affected the people involved, the politics of the time, and modern society.


3.C&G.2; 3.C.1; 4.H.1; 4.C.1; 5.H.1; 5.G.1;

Political Cartoons Analysis – Have you ever seen a political cartoon in the newspaper? Have you ever wondered what it means? Come see our Political Cartoon Exhibit for a chance to examine how political cartoons are perceived; how they influence and are influenced by culture; and the role they play in government, policies, and elections.


4.C.1; 5.H.1; 5.H.2;

Education Program Offerings - Pope House Museum

Pope House Museum

Program Name & Description

Recommended Grade Level

NC Essential Standards

Artifact Handling: Dr. Pope’s Medicine Bag – A hands-on experience, learn about some of the equipment that Dr. Pope and other doctors of his time would have use. Learn what the equipment was used for and what it might have influenced today

K-2 3-5

K.H.1.1; 1.E.1.1; 2.H.1.2; 3.E.2.2; 4.G.1.4;  

Pope House Tour – Take a tour of one of the most prominent African-Americans in downtown Raleigh’s history – Dr. Pope. Learn about his life; his medical practice; his family; his contributions to the African-American community in downtown Raleigh; and explore one of the oldest standing houses on Wilmington Street.


3.C.1; 4.C.1; AAS.H.1; AAS.H.2; AAS.E.1; AAS.C&G.1; AAS.C.1;

African-American Walking Tour – Learn about the African-American influence in downtown Raleigh in a tour that includes the Pope House, Stronachs Alley, Wilmington St., and Shaw University.


3.C.1; 4.H.2; 4.G.1; 4.C.1; 5.C.1; AAS.H.1; AAS.H.2; AAS.E.1; AAS.C&G.1; AAS.C.1;

Stronachs Alley: Then, Now, and Next – Learn the history of Stronachs Alley. See what once stood in Stronachs Alley, compared to today. Picture what it might look like in the future, and express those ideas through drawing!


3.V.2; 3.V.3; 4.G.1; 4.V.2; 4.V.3; 5.C.1; 5.V.3;

Education Program Offerings - Capital Games

Capital Games

Capital Games

** This program is a standalone program. It requires 2 hours to complete and can accommodate 50 students.

Program Name & Description

Recommended Grade Level

NC Essential Standards

Capital Games – Play the Capital Games! Join a secret mission to preserve Raleigh’s identity by participating in a scavenger-hunt style game! Each student-led team must determine the theme of their hunt, based on the places they visit – each team has a different theme! Each team member will have a job to do, and only by working together will you learn your secret theme! (Teams are largely student-led with chaperones acting as facilitators.) Themes include: Businesses; Skyscrapers; Government; Religion; African-American History; and Art.


4.H.2; 4.G.1; 4.C&G.1; RI.3.1; RI.3.2; RI.4.1; RI.4.2; RI.5.1; RI.5.2; W.4.2; W.5.2; SL.3.1; SL.3.2; SL.4.1; SL.4.2; SL.5.1; SL.5.2;


If you are interested in volunteering at the City of Raleigh Museum please contact Ernest Dollar or view the volunteer information for the Historic Resources and Museum Program.


As a member you will help revitalize and preserve North Carolina's history. You will also enjoy cross program perks at the City of Raleigh Museum, The Raleigh Trolley, Mordecai Historic Park, Borden, Tucker, and Pope House Museum.

There are many perks:

  • Free admission to select site and museum events;
  • Free admission for select tours;
  • Free admission to select lectures;
  • Free admission to Mordecai Historic Park;
  • Free admission to City of Raleigh Museum;
  • 10 percent gift shop discount at Mordecai and City Museum;
  • 10 percent discount on all site rentals; and,
  • The Raleigh Register Program Newsletter.

To become a member, please visit the Friends of the City of Raleigh Museum website


Was this page helpful?

NerdWallet named Raleigh

Among the Most Innovative Tech Hubs in the Nation

View our accolades >>