Duplin County NC

Cowan Museum of History and Science


The Cowan Museum of History and Science collects, preserves, and interprets objects relating to regional history, its peoples, and the sciences. We strive to inspire the joy of learning about our world and how to make it a better place.


The Cowan Museum of History and Science was founded in 1981 by George and Ila Cowan as a memorial to their daughter, Joann Cowan Brown. It is housed within the Kelly-Farrier House (ca. 1848) and has an adjacent historical park with 6 buildings, which include a log cabin, general store, and one-room schoolhouse. Of the 4,300 objects in the collections, about 2,000 were donated to Duplin County by the Cowan family, with most focusing on 19th and 20th century tools and technology that document a history of innovation, resourcefulness, and creativity. Objects on display include a diversity of woodworking tools, agricultural implements, items used in a variety of crafts and trades, medical devices, many household artifacts, and an impressive collection of geological specimens. In addition, unique items may be encountered onsite, such as a tornado simulator, an alternative fuel fan, and a hog oiler.

Services Provided:

Exhibits, programs, tours, and events free to the public.

Website: www.cowanmuseum.org

Photo of the front view of the Cowan Museum.
Photo of one of the log cabin buildings at the Cowan Museum.
Photo of the right front side of the Cowan Museum at night.
Photo of the General Store at the Cowan Museum.
Robin Lynnea Grotke

Robin Lynnea Grotke

Department Head

Physical address:
411 S. Main Street
Kenansville, NC 28349

Map To Location

Mailing address:
P.O. Box 950
Kenansville, NC 28349

Hours of operation:
Tuesday – Saturday
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Closed in accordance with the State of
North Carolina’s holidays and holiday

Fax: (910) 296-2107