Wake Forest Historical Museum

414 N. Main Street Wake Forest, NC 27587 (919.556.2911)

Old Campus Pranks, ca. 1935

In this 1-minute video, 101-year-old Willard Brown (WFC ’36) recalls a college prank that led to a stern, campus-wide reprimand from the Wake Forest College professors, coaches, and famous Dr. … Continue reading

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Wake Forest in World War II

From the movies they watched to the coins in their pockets, life for Wake Forest residents changed dramatically during the war years. With copper needed to manufacture shell casings, the … Continue reading

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A Russian in Wake Forest

In the 1930s, a Wake Forest College student from Russia studied to become a minister before his life was cut tragically short. In a 1-minute video, Willard Brown (WFC ’36), age 101, shares … Continue reading

September 4, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Arson Fires

In the early hours of May 5, 1933, the original Wait Hall burned to the ground. Wake Forest College students were roused from sleep to run outside and watch the … Continue reading

August 30, 2014 · 4 Comments

Driveable Destinations – Summer 2014

(CIRCA Magazine – A travel column from the Wake Forest Historical Museum) The universe loves the number three. Consider the three little pigs, the three bears, and the three blind … Continue reading

August 28, 2014 · Leave a comment

The World War II Exhibit Slideshow

June 27, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Handsome American Pilot and the Little German Boy

The pilot is handsome in a modern way, with a smile you might see on Facebook or Instagram. Rather than part of the distant past, he could almost pass for … Continue reading

June 23, 2014 · 1 Comment

Driveable Destinations – Spring 2014

(CIRCA Magazine – A travel column from the Wake Forest Historical Museum) Photo courtesy of Michael Blevins Photography “Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a … Continue reading

April 12, 2014 · Leave a comment

Looking for Relief from March Madness

Written by Tom Parrish (WFU ’67) President, Wake Forest College Birthplace Society The ACC basketball tournament is a reminder of the fever that strikes this time of year, especially if … Continue reading

March 19, 2014 · Leave a comment

Calvin Jones and the War of 1812 – A Reenactment

As many of you have probably guessed, the War of 1812 actually occurred in 1814. Although Congress officially declared war on the British in 1812–for conspiring to block America’s westward … Continue reading

March 12, 2014 · Leave a comment

The Legacy of L. Robert Best: “Let your light shine.”

He was a headmaster straight from Central Casting–a stern, bespectacled black man from Barbados with a clipped accent, perfect manners, and a passion for equal education that would change Wake … Continue reading

March 7, 2014 · 2 Comments

Driveable Destinations – Winter 2014

(CIRCA Magazine – A travel column from the Wake Forest Historical Museum) It lies along a winding, country road, its fluted Doric columns strangely at odds with the surrounding countryside. … Continue reading

January 22, 2014 · Leave a comment

How the Garden Club Made History

In June 1956, one month after Wake Forest College moved to Winston-Salem, a group of eleven women from the Wake Forest Garden Club decided to save the Calvin Jones House … Continue reading

January 15, 2014 · Leave a comment

The High Humor and Historic Times of Dr. N.Y. Gulley

Dr. Needham Yancey Gulley’s life was split almost evenly between the centuries. As a boy during the Civil War, he saw Sherman’s troops march toward Raleigh. In 1894 he founded … Continue reading

January 4, 2014 · Leave a comment

A 1927 “Letter to Santa” at the Community Christmas Dinner

Article appearing in the November 21, 2013 edition of the The Wake Forest Weekly: It was three weeks before Christmas when nine-year-old Tom Arrington wrote a letter to Santa Claus … Continue reading

November 22, 2013 · Leave a comment

A Collections Visit from WFU

Article appearing in the August 8, 2013 edition of The Wake Forest Weekly:

November 22, 2013 · Leave a comment

Driveable Destinations – Christmas 2013

(CIRCA Magazine – A travel column from the Wake Forest Historical Museum) Photograph by Steve Rankin Anyone who’s experienced the magic of Christmas can verify that not even Santa’s toy … Continue reading

November 13, 2013 · Leave a comment

Driveable Destinations – Fall 2013

(CIRCA Magazine-A travel column from the Wake Forest Historical Museum) With Halloween in the air and the holiday season ahead, it’s time for a whirlwind tour of a very spooky … Continue reading

October 30, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Royall Tea Caddy

This mahogany-veneered tea caddy, with two tin-lined pigeon holes and cut-crystal bowl (added later), comes to us from the family of Wake Forest College Professor William Bailey Royall, and dates … Continue reading

October 11, 2013 · Leave a comment

Calvin Jones House Christmas Ornament

Priced at $20.00 (including tax) at the Wake Forest Historical Museum. For shipping, please send $22.00 cash or check with mailing address to: Wake Forest Historical Museum PO Box 494 … Continue reading

October 9, 2013 · Leave a comment

When all the world, at least in the South, was young.

This Civil War story from Fannie Powers Dodd, great-granddaughter of Dr. Samuel Wait and Sarah “Sally” Merriam Wait, was recently rediscovered during an overhaul of the museum’s vertical files. The … Continue reading

September 24, 2013 · 6 Comments

A Slave History: Free at Last in Wake Forest

One of the most fascinating articles we’ve found in the archives of the Wake Forest College student newspaper, the Old Gold and Black, tells the story of Ellen Lewis. Also … Continue reading

September 5, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Movie Theaters

The Forest Theater on South White Street, circa 1942, was a popular destination for college students and town residents, particularly after it became the first local business to install air-conditioning. … Continue reading

August 23, 2013 · Leave a comment

Olive Branch Baptist Church

During the Civil War, slaves worshipping at Wake Forest Baptist Church broke away to create their own congregation. The Baptist Church leaders offered help, funding and guidance, demonstrating the Christian … Continue reading

August 20, 2013 · Leave a comment

The Historic Home

The two-story Greek-Revival house is the town’s oldest dwelling and features a hall-parlor plan with much of its original woodwork, a two-story porch, and exterior chimneys with freestanding stacks. The … Continue reading

August 11, 2013 · Leave a comment

19th Century German Dolls

It’s always a thrill when someone answers our call for artifacts with a generous donation of any sort, but when Julia Freitag visited the museum to deliver this trio of … Continue reading

July 31, 2013 · Leave a comment

Restoring the Old Well

Even the most charming landmarks can deteriorate over time. And after more than a century as one of Wake Forest’s most symbolic structures, the historic Old Well needed a bit … Continue reading

July 30, 2013 · Leave a comment

Hours & Info

Tues-Fri: 9am-noon & 1:30-4:30pm
Sun: 2pm-5pm

Closed: Saturday and Monday

Call us at 919.556.2911

Free Admission

The WWII Exhibit