With its rich history and cultural offerings, along with the beauty of its rivers and surrounding region, living in Craven County means having the best of both worlds: the quaintness of a Southern small town and the vitality of a community that appreciates its vibrant sense of place. In addition to a low cost of living and abundant natural amenities, the county offers a quality of life not often found in larger metropolitan areas. In 2015, an estimated 103,451 people called Craven County home, the U.S. Census Bureau says. Population density in Craven County was 146 people per square mile, the Census found.
Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, in Craven County, is made up of more than 53,000 people, including active-duty and retired Marines, the civilian workforce and their families. Additionally, more than 13,000 veterans live in the area.
The counties’ communities give newcomers plenty of choices when selecting a home. Enlist the help of a reputable real estate agent to help you sort through the area’s home options. The North Carolina Association of Realtors is a central source of local real estate information and services. Visit www.ncrealtors.org to find expertise and professional services for those interested in purchasing a new home.
Craven County was named after William, 1st Earl of Craven, son of a Lord Mayor of London and a soldier who, while fighting on the Continent during the English Civil War back home, fell madly in love with Elizabeth of Bohemia, sister to the embattled Charles I. As part of his wooing Craven threw financial support behind Charles, but after that monarch lost his head his son, Charles II, eventually ascended the English throne. Charles II rewarded Craven’s loyalty with an earldom, a share in the Colony of Carolina, which he served from afar as one of its Lord Proprietors, and court offices where he developed a reputation for bawdy language and generosity; during the Great Plague of London, he was among the few nobles who stayed, maintaining order and donating property for burials. In gratitude, Craven County took his name at its formation in 1712, though the earl himself had been dead 15 years. County seat New Bern had a river port and later, railways, and commerce and transportation brought wealth and culture to the whole area. Heavy fighting raged across the region during the Civil War, however, and battlegrounds are a significant part of county history.
With the Croatan National Forest situated within the county, and access to several riverfronts and close proximity to Atlantic Ocean beaches, Craven County is perfect for outdoor reaction. For more information about where to go and what to see in the county, check out the New Bern Convention and Visitors Bureau website at www.visitnewbern.com.
Communities in Craven County near Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point include Havelock and New Bern.
P.O. Box 368
Havelock, NC 28532 252-444-6400
Located in Eastern North Carolina, midway between New Bern and the beaches of the Crystal Coast, Havelock has much to offer residents and visitors alike. The city’s 16.85 square miles are home to more than 20,000 residents.
Havelock is one of eight cities in the world named after Sir Henry Havelock, a British officer in India who distinguished himself in 1857 during what was known as the Indian Mutiny. The area was originally named Havelock Station in the late 1850s, when the Atlantic and North Carolina Railroad built a depot where its right of way crossed what is now Miller Boulevard.
In 1940, Havelock became the home of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point. The Naval Aviation Depot located on the air station provides employment opportunities for local residents. In 1959 the town was officially established.
Situated at the edge of the Croatan National Forest, there are plenty of opportunities for outdoor recreation in the area.
The cost of living is below the national average by more than 10 percent. Median rent is $1,071, and selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,233. Mean travel time to work for those living in Havelock is 17 minutes.
300 Pollock St.
New Bern, NC 28560 252-636-4000
New Bern was settled in 1710 by Swiss and Palatine German immigrants. The new colonists named the settlement after Bern, the capital of Switzerland and hometown of their leader Christoph von Graffenried. New Bern is the second-oldest European-American colonial town in North Carolina (after Bath). It served as the capital of the North Carolina colonial government, then briefly as the state capital. After the American Revolution, New Bern became wealthy and quickly developed a rich cultural life. That cultural life continues today with four historical districts recognized by the National Register of Historic Places. These areas provide much of New Bern’s unique charm, appeal to retirees and heritage tourism, and contribute to the city’s economic success. Even with its rich history, the city still has areas available for new development.
The city serves as the county seat of Craven County, a distinction it has held since 1722. New Bern is 19 miles north of MCAS Cherry Point at the junction of the Neuse and Trent rivers, offering residents beautiful river views and walkways.
This residential community is 28.23 square miles with a population of 30,070. Mean travel time to work for those who reside in New Bern is 19 minutes. Median rent in the city is $862, and selected monthly owner costs of housing units with a mortgage are $1,376.
New Bern is notable for being the setting for two of Nicholas Sparks’ novels, “The Notebook” and “A Bend in the Road.”