Currituck Landmarks Celebrate Black Heritage

June 18, 2021

This summer in Currituck County, the “road trip” is redefined to include the rich, inspirational stories that have shaped African American history and culture in North Carolina. We are proud to take part in the African American Experience of Northeast North Carolina, a six-county venture comprising more than 30 different monuments, parks, waterways and museums for visitors to explore on a self-guided tour.

The Currituck leg of this digital heritage trail launched on June 19th, or Juneteenth, at Historic Jarvisburg Colored School. The celebration included live performances and remarks by local civic and religious leaders, and attendees had the opportunity to tour one of the trail’s landmarks and learn more about the contributions of African Americans to the communities taking part in this extraordinary initiative. See video highlights of the event on our YouTube channel.

Historic Jarvisburg Colored School

Of the more than 30 stops on the heritage trail, three are located in Jarvisburg in Currituck County:

Captain Benjamin J. Bowser’s Gravesite: Captain Bowser (1854-1900) served as the manager of the Pea Island Lifesaving Station. Along with his crew, he assisted sailors in distress along the Outer Banks coast. The station is the subject of a documentary film, Rescue Men – The story of the Pea Island Surfmen.

Corinth Missionary Baptist Church: A landmark on the Currituck mainland, Corinth Missionary Baptist Church has one of the oldest active congregations in the county.

Historic Jarvisburg Colored School: Listed on the National Registry of Historic Places, this beautifully restored school building houses a museum of late 19th and early 20th century African-American life and education in the Currituck area. Learn more about this historic Currituck site.

Captain Bowser’s Gravesite (Photo:

The African American Experience of Northeast North Carolina also includes stops in Camden, Chowan, Dare, Pasquotank and Perquimans counties. If you have planned a day on the mainland during your Corolla and Currituck Beach vacation, this is a wonderful opportunity to immerse yourself in the stories of and contributions to the African American heritage of our region.

You can explore all the sites included on this driving tour at, and follow the site on Facebook and Instagram for updates.