School Field Trips

ANNOUNCEMENT: Poplar Grove Foundation Inc. is suspending field trips this spring to restructure all of our tour programs and redesign the layout of the grounds.

In lieu of field trips to Poplar Grove this spring, we are directing educators to consider Moores Creek Battlefield instead!

The 250th anniversary of the founding of this Nation is only two years away, and we have been working with Moores Creek Battlefield to draw attention to North Carolina’s Revolutionary War history:  National Park Service and America 250 Launch Countdown to 250th Anniversary Commemoration of American Independence – Office of Communications (U.S. National Park Service) (

It’s a great opportunity to engage students in Revolutionary War history by introducing them to this celebratory countdown!

The staff at Poplar Grove is dedicated to helping students understand the uniqueness of life along the Gullah Geechee Cultural Heritage Corridor through several generations, including the operations and purposes of plantation life from enslavement to tenant farming.

Elementary and middle school educational programs are designed to meet Competency Goals for the Common Core Social Studies & NC Essential Standards, most specifically for elementary-age groups. 

For the safety of the faculty, staff, parents and students, school-sponsored activities are required to register by downloading the School Group Trip Request Form and emailing a copy to Caroline Lewis at 

Upper middle school and high school educational programs can be tailored to meet the goals of a specific unit, or a particular area of interest or subject matter to be more in-depth and challenging to include the harsh realities of enslavement, tenant farming, Jim Crow, and the 1898 Wilmington Race Massacre. 

Once registered, a packet of information will be emailed one week prior to your visit.


This overview will start the visit with a map and schedule of your class activities.
Manor House
C. 1850. After the original manor house of 1795 was destroyed by fire in 1849, the current manor house brings to life the history of the Foy family through period furnishings, but more notably the architectural, engineering, carpentry, masonry and artisan skills by the enslaved population or by the renting out/hiring out skilled enslaved from nearby plantations.
Smoke House
C. 1850. Used for smoking meat, a form of food preservation during a time when there was no refrigeration, to include beef, pork, and wild game. 
Kitchen Storage House & Herb Cellar
C. 1850. Cooking was done in a separate building, away from the manor house, due to the threat of fire. The original kitchen which no longer exists was in a clapboard structure that had a center chimney with three hearths (beehive chimney). Today, there still stands a bricked Kitchen Storage House & Herb Cellar. The underground level of the storage house was used to dry and store herbs used in cooking.
Tenant House
C. 1875. Tenant farming became the new form of enslavement after the Civil War. At Poplar Grove, more than 2/3 of the formerly enslaved remained on site, and a few family descendants remained on site as tenant farmers and domestic servants through WWI and WWII. Until the 1960s, this two-room tenant house was last occupied by Nimrod Nixon, descended through several generations of the Gullah peoples. 
Gardens (in season)
Display gardens on site include herbs, vegetables and flowers, dye plants, peanuts, tobacco and cotton at various times of the year.
Peanut & Agricultural Exhibit Building
Housing a collection of antique farming tools, equipment used around the early 1900’s for peanut production and harvesting, plus exhibits on peanut production.
Basket Studio
A large variety of baskets, materials and techniques are used here to interpret the skill and history of basketry.
Blacksmith Shop
The blacksmith shop produces nails, hardware and tools. Repairs to farm equipment, wagons and the shoeing horses were also done here.
Print Shop
Learn the trade of printmaking and see how newspapers were printed before computers, typewriters, and even electricity!
The Stables
girls hensView a menagerie of goats, sheep, horses, ponies, geese, chickens, and more.

Available on a first-come, first-serve basis, school groups are welcome to use the picnic tables for lunch and the playground for break-time. Restrooms on site as well as bus parking.