Throughout its more than three centuries of existence, New Bern is a city that has seen tremendous highs and devastating lows. From its original stature as the capital of North Carolina, to its rise to fame as the Birthplace of Pepsi, New Bern has had more than its fair share of incredible events, which makes it a delightful destination for any visitor who appreciates American history. Discover the stories that are hidden in plain sight throughout this coastal town, and see why when it comes to historical importance and local legacy, New Bern is hard to beat.
Jesse Elliot, a young whipper-snapper known to be a pretty high livin', reckless sort, was prone to racing horses, especially on Sundays.
Now Jesse lived in a God-fearing riverside community, where the oldest church in North Carolina, and one of the oldest in America - St. Thomas Episcopal Church - stands. One particular fall afternoon in the 1800's, Jesse shouted to his horse galloping down the race lane, "Take me in a winner, or take me to Hell." Whereas, the horse dug its hoofs into the soft ground in two mighty leaps and hurled Jesse against a near-by tree, killing him instantly.
Throughout the years, the hoofprints have remained, refusing to be filled in. Nothing covers the hoofprints for long, though many have tried by piling leaves, sticks or other objects into the crevices, only to return later to find them bare.