Explore the History of Island Farm


outer banks island farmFrom the Wright Brothers' First Flight, to the Lost Colony, to the Graveyard of the Atlantic…the Outer Banks is overflowing with rich history that is marked by pivotal moments in time. It's not just the major events that are exciting to experience in their original location, however, but the everyday lives of those who came a long time before us, are fascinating to retrace in their own way. There's a little spot on Roanoke Island that not everyone knows about. A place where you can step back in time to the mid 1800's…at a place called Island Farm. Located just north of Manteo, and only 15 minutes from Nags Head, Island Farm discreetly awaits visitors of all ages.

If you've ever wanted to know what island life was like more than 150 years ago, this little piece of the Outer Banks will give you the taste you're looking for. With nearly a dozen buildings to explore, including a farmhouse, reconstructed slave cabin, outhouse, cookhouse, smokehouse, dairy house, barns, chicken coop, corn crib, woodshed, and blacksmith shop, there's plenty of pre-Civil War living to explore at Island Farm.

The site traces its history back to January of 1757, when Jesse Etheridge acquired the 150-acre plot. Thirty years later, he purchased another 150 acres, gaining access to the Roanoke Sound. Early maps indicate that it was on this property that he built his home, but it was his grandson, Adam Etheridge, who built the house that is recognized as the centerpiece of what you see of Island Farm today.

Interpreters dressed in period attire perform daily duties and carry out activities as if they would have on their Roanoke Farm in the 1850's. Chickens roam around freely and sheep, a cow, an ox and two banker ponies graze in the pastures. Visitors can wander around the grounds, through the kitchen garden, grape arbor, island figs, and a cornfield. Adults and kids alike will enjoy the hands-on activities daily and demonstrations at Island Farm, including woodworking, cooking, and blacksmithing. An ox-drawn wagon ride is also available, among other games and activities.

Ranked #1 of 12 attractions in Manteo to date on Trip Advisor, Island Farm is the perfect place to bring the family while on an Outer Banks vacation. For more information on how to reserve your spot at Roanoke Island's historical secret Island Farm, call (252) 473-6500, or click: here.