Rep. Jeff McNeely (center) poses for a photo with members of the Friends of Fort Dobbs Board.

Special to Iredell Free News

The Friends of Fort Dobbs is preparing to undertake the second phase of a multi-year improvement project at Fort Dobbs State Historic Site in Statesville.

A full-scale replica of the log fort was completed in 2019.

Thanks to a grant from the N.C. General Assembly, plans are now underway for construction of a new visitor center.

The new visitor center will include exhibits on the French and Indian War, a gift shop, enhanced visitor amenities, and staff offices.

From 2022-2023, the N.C. General Assembly appropriated a total of $2.5 million to pay for the design and construction of a 3,500- to 4,000-square-foot building, in addition to other site improvements.

“Our legislators past and present have been tremendous supporters of the fort,” Friends of Fort Dobbs board member Ken Robertson said. “They recognize what a great historical destination we have. A proper visitor center will pay off for Iredell County as tourists spend more time and money at the fort, then at local businesses.”

Rep. Jeff McNeely presented the nonprofit board with a ceremonial check at a meeting on February 8. McNeely, Rep. Grey Mills, and Sen. Vickie Sawyer were all instrumental in securing the funding.

The design process will be completed this year with construction anticipated in 2025.


The Friends of Fort Dobbs is a 501c3 non-profit organization which supports Fort Dobbs State Historic Site in its mission to preserve and interpret the site of Fort Dobbs and North Carolina’s role in the French and Indian War.

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