Located just 10 miles south of New Bern, North Carolina the Foscue Plantation stands tall as a majestic reminder of a period in time more than 200 years ago. Built in 1824 by Simon Foscue, Jr., the plantation house has been in the family for eight generations. During the War Between the States, after the Battle of New Bern, Caroline Foscue, widow of John Edward Foscue, fled to Thomasville and Goldsboro with her two daughters while her son and brother fought for the Confederate Army around Richmond and Petersburg, VA. The Foscue Plantation House was occupied periodically by Union troops due to it’s strategic location between New Bern, which was Union occupied, and Kinston, which was Confederate occupied. Today, the house has been meticulously restored to it’s original construction in high-style antebellum décor that showcases a number of original furnishings. In addition, the family continues to acquire antiques correct to the period.
It is belived that this family is descended from the first recorded Fortescue in America
The history of the Foscue (Fosque) family in America begins with SYMON FORTESCUE, who is in the “Original Lists of Persons of Quality” by Holten (p.268), with a patent for 100 acres in the Corporacon of Charles Cittie, Va., – prior to 1625. Records show that he did come several years prior to 1625 and that he died at sea on his way back to England to settle some affairs. Records of the Virginia Company in London, Oct. 31, 1621, show Capt. Henry Ffortescue (uncle and administrator for the estate of Symon Fortescue “who died at sea on his return to England”) asking the court to assist in recovery of lands, goods and debts for the deceased.
He apparently left a wife and at least one child on the Virginia Eastern Shore where court records show many generations of Symon Foscues, with many various spellings of the name! They lived in Northampton County near Hungars Creek, where in 1691, Simon Foscue, with a partner bought a plantation “or divident of land” called Nevilles Neck (about 675 acres) for 32,400 lbs. tobacco. The home known as Vauxhall stands today but is no longer in the Foscue family. There is a story that about 200 years ago, it was lost in a card game played in front of a mirror in which Foscue’s cards were seen. The mirror is said to be still in the house.
Simon Foscue and his wife Anne had several children including Barbara who married Henry Blair and was the grandmother of Christian who married Whitttington Johnson The will of Simon Foscue in 1717, mentions “My eldest son Simon, now at the Southerd” which meant Hyde County, NC. Records of a council held at Bath Town 14th day March, 1745-46, list the Petition of Simon Fortescue, showing he had a patent granted him for 470 acres of land lying in Hyde County in year 1704-5; that soon after the Indian War broke out: “your petitioner was shot in the head, his wife and children taken prisoners and carried away; his home burnt down, all lost. And he has continued ever since to pay just rent, etc.” His petition for the land was granted. He remarried and apparently prospered, for in his will (Hyde County, 1751), he leaves substantial legacies to his 9 children, including two sons, Simon and Richard.