For many descendants of the Tuscarora, the
Nooherooka Fort site is a hallowed-ground
landmark, a modern landscape memorial to
their ancestors’ “last stand” in the Carolinas.
The physical evidence of a great historical
tragedy is largely intact beneath the surface
of the agricultural fields and wooded peripheries
of the battlefield. The significant historical events
closely associated with the Nooherooka Fort
site (31GR4) led to its listing on the National
Register of Historic Places on July 17, 2009.
Nooherooka Fort (also Neoheroka—Neyuherú•kęʔ—meaning“forked field”) was originally constructed in late 1712 to provide protection for their nearby communities along the Contentnea Creek—Tosneoc, Torhunta, Kenta, Neoheroka, Innennits, Caunookehoe, and Catechna. Although multiple forts were constructed in the Contentnea basin between 1711 and 1713, Nooherooka Fort is the only archaeologically confirmed Tuscarora fort of the war era. The Nooherooka Fort exhibit recognizes the formal archaeological investigations at site 31GR4 from 1990-2001 under the direction of Dr. David Phelps and Dr. John Byrd, Department of Anthropology, East Carolina University. The excavations determined the actual architectural design of the fort by exposing features associated with the fortification and the structures within and recovered a sample of archaeological materials from the site (artifacts are housed today at the Phelps Archaeological Laboratory at East Carolina University). The exhibit, designed by archaeologists and historians Charles Heath and Clay Swindell, highlights an important event in the history of North Carolina.