AAA Editor Notes
Old Salem Museums & Gardens, on Old Salem Rd. near downtown Winston-Salem, is a living-history re-creation of the Moravian church town of Salem that was founded in 1766. More than 100 buildings erected over the next century are restored or have been reconstructed on their original sites. Family gardens and orchards have been replanted, and streets and lighting have been modified to suggest an 18th-century atmosphere.
Several buildings are private residences, including the half-timbered Fourth House; built in 1768, it is thought to be the oldest house in Old Salem. Twelve of the more than 90 restored buildings can be visited. Costumed interpreters throughout town demonstrate historic trades and domestic activities. The complex also is home to Salem College, a women's liberal arts school.
Self-guiding tours begin with a brief orientation program at the Old Salem Visitor Center, 900 Old Salem Rd. Attraction tickets can be purchased at the center, which contains exhibits detailing the history and lifestyle of the Moravian people. One noteworthy item is the restored Tannenberg Organ, made at the turn of the 19th century by David Tannenberg, a Moravian immigrant and organ builder. The Frank L. Horton Museum Center houses the Anne P. and Thomas A. Gray Library and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts and MESDA Research Center.
Guided tours are available. Food is available.