Joel Lane House Museum – Raleigh, North Carolina - Atlas Obscura
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Raleigh, North Carolina

Joel Lane House Museum

Eighteenth century house of the mysterious "Father of Raleigh." 

Tucked away in a residential neighborhood in downtown Raleigh, the Joel Lane House, built in 1769, is the oldest house in Raleigh, however very little is known about the man who built it.

Joel Lane is known as “the Father of Raleigh” because he sold the land to the state of North Carolina to establish the capital city. He is also known as “the Father of Wake County” because he sponsored the bill that enabled its creation. These facts withstanding—the man remains a mystery as no images of him survive and his motives are unclear.

On a tour guided by costumed docents learn about life on a late 18th-century plantation in North Carolina and explore how interpretations of Lane have changed over time.

 

 

Know Before You Go

The Joel Lane House is open for tours on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Tours start on the hour. The museum is located on the corner of Hargett St. and St. Mary's St. The house is easy to miss but is well worth a visit.