Celebrate North Carolina’s Official Veterans Day Parade in Duplin County

November is a special time in Duplin County as we celebrate all veterans and active duty military in our annual Veteran’s Day Parade.  The parade takes place in the Town of Warsaw on November 3, 2018, from 10 am to 4 pm.  The entire county will be swelling with pride!

The 2018 parade theme is “Marching Towards 100”, honoring all those who served this great country and all of us who are marching towards the 100th parade in November 2020. 

Started 1921, Duplin County is home to  “The Oldest Consecutive Veterans Day Celebration in America.”  To add to this remarkable distinction, Warsaw subsequently became designated as a Veterans Day Regional Site in 2012 by the Veterans Day National Committee.  On June 24, 2016, the North Carolina General Assembly adopted the Veterans Day Parade held in the Town of Warsaw in Duplin County as the official State Veterans Day Parade. The bill to adopt the parade was ratified on June 15, 2016, and signed into law by the governor on June 24, 2016.

Duplin County is surrounded by several major military bases located all throughout Eastern North Carolina.  We invite you to Duplin County for a truly amazing day of patriotism, family fun, and entertainment!  It’s a day to honor our service men and women from all five branches of the military for protecting our freedom and this fine country we call home, while we remember those who gave it all. 

Start your day with a pancake breakfast at the Warsaw Baptist Church followed by the amazing NC BBQ lunch at the Warsaw VFD Downtown Fire Station.  We have some great restaurants in Duplin County – and if you haven’t been to The Country Squire for dinner, you need to check it out.  It is truly an experience!

2018 Veterans Day Regional Site – Schedule of Events

7:30 – 9:30 am:     Masonic Pancake Breakfast at Warsaw Baptist Church

9 am – 4 pm:           Food & Craft vendors, and more

10 am:                      VFW Memorial Services at Veteran’s Park

11 am:                       Fly Over / Special Forces Parachute Jump and the Parade begins

12 pm:                       BBQ lunch at Warsaw VFD Downtown Fire Station

1 – 4 pm:                  Visit the Duplin County Veterans Museum on East Hill Street, the Truck Show, fun and entertainment for all

We look forward to seeing you in Duplin County!  For more information visit our website or contact the Duplin County Tourism office at 910.296.2181.  Be sure to check out our Escape Packages and premier Festivals and Events!


100th Annual Veterans Day Celebration

The oldest consecutive Veterans Day Parade in America.  This year, the 100th  consecutive parade will be held on Saturday, November 7th, 2020. 


92nd Veterans Day Celebration in Warsaw

To say Duplin County was swelling with pride on Saturday, November 10th would be an understatement. Indeed it was a celebration of honor many experienced in Warsaw during this year?s 92 nd Veterans Day Celebration.

Started in 1921, Duplin County can lay claim to “The Oldest Consecutive Veterans Day Celebration in America.” And this year, to add to its remarkable distinction, Warsaw was also designated as a Veterans Day Regional Site for 2012 by the Veterans Day National Committee.

So much to be thankful for during this season of thanks and giving, and who better to honor than our service heroes? The tradition of the day-long celebration began with a pancake breakfast at the Masonic Lodge, followed by a community sidewalk sale in the downtown, and led up to a moving memorial service at Veteran?s Park.

Then, the clock struck 11am with a rousing Fly Over and Special Forces Jump Team, kicking off the annual parade. Thousands of onlookers lined the streets and cheered on the 103 parade entries complete with clowns, vintage cars, the signature Giant Shopping Cart, and of course the ultimate highlight of the parade ? our honored veterans.

Warsaw Fire Station was the site for mouth-watering southern BBQ plates for lunch, and then it was onto the Duplin County Veterans Museum for sharing memories from 1pm-4pm intermixed with an afternoon of fun activities ranging from a community-wide Corn Hole Tournament to street dancing.

Truly a day to celebrate our heroes.

Remember, as it is said ? if you can?t serve, serve those that do.

To all of our United States Veterans, Duplin County thanks you all! We look forward to honoring you and your service again next year!

Veterans Day 2011 Recap

November 5, 2011 the town of Warsaw celebrated the men and women of our armed forces with the oldest consecutively celebrated Veterans Day observance in America. This year was the 91st year of the Veterans Day parade. The day started with a pancake breakfast at the Masonic Lodge. Vendors set up for a sidewalk sale while their customers shopped and waited for the memorial service at 10AM and the parade at 11AM. Visitors could enjoy a BBQ lunch at the Warsaw fire station and finish the day with tours of the LP Best House and Duplin County Veterans Museum.

Thanks to the town of Warsaw for another fun and wonderful year of keeping up this Veterans Day tradition, but even more importantly, thanks to the service men and women for protecting our freedom.

Veterans Day Celebration in Warsaw

Duplin County is surrounded by several major bases, so it comes as no surprise that Veterans Day is an important day in the area. The town of Warsaw is home to the oldest, consecutively celebrated Veterans Day observance in America. At this year?s 91st celebration, the day begins with a pancake breakfast at 8AM at the Masonic Lodge. Vendors will be set up for a sidewalk sale at 9AM for visitors to shop before the memorial service at 10AM and the parade at 11AM. A BBQ lunch is available at noon at the Warsaw fire station and the day wraps up with tours of the LP Best House and Duplin County Veterans Museum.

Come out to the town of Warsaw on November 5th to help thank our service men and women for protecting our freedom and this fine country we call home and remember those who gave it all. For more information on events, visit www.townofwarsawnc.com.

4 N.C. cities selected as regional Veterans Day sites

Two area communities, one with the longest running Veterans Day parade and the other said to have the largest, have received special recognition for their efforts.

The Veterans Day National Committee has selected four North Carolina locations as Regional Sites for the observance of Veterans Day 2010, according to a news release from the N.C. Division of Veterans Affairs. The sites include Warsaw, Morehead City, Fayetteville and Charlotte.

It’s the first time North Carolina has been designated according to the release.

Raymond Cooper, 64, of Kenansville, an employee at the Duplin County Veterans Service Office, grew up watching Veterans Day parade in Warsaw and found the recognition for the parade a fitting one. According to the town’s website, it’s the oldest consecutive Veterans Day celebration in America and started in 1921.

“My father was a World War II veteran and we never missed it. We always knew we were going to the parade,” he said.

Cooper took his own kids and now participates in the parade with an entry for the county’s senior center.

It’s all about remembering the country’s veterans, he said.

“They went off and fought for our country and we should all be proud,” he said.

The news release says each of the four locations selected has an “established history of pulling out all the stops to celebrate Veterans Day.”

Morehead City, it said, has a tradition of presenting the largest annual Veterans Day parade in North Carolina with 150 or more entries and drawing support from area Marine Corps facilities at Camp Lejeune, Cherry Point and New River as well as the Coast Guard Station at Fort Macon and others. The parade is put on by the Carteret County Veterans Council.

Local organizers at the regional sites will receive assistance from federal military officials in the planning of activities for Veterans Day 2010, the release said.

Carteret County Veterans Service Officer Hank Gotard had just learned of the selection of Morehead City as a regional site.

“It sort of says a lot about our community and what we’re about. Patriotism is alive and well in Carteret County and eastern North Carolina,” he said.

Back in Warsaw, the designation comes just as the Veterans Day observance prepares for its 90th year. The observance is organized by the Duplin County Chamber of Commerce’s Veterans Committee.

“We’re just so thrilled that we got it on our 90th and we’re pleased and honored that we were chosen,” said Linda Kitchin, executive director of the Chamber of Commerce.

As a regional site, she said, the hope is to draw an even larger number of veterans to this year’s observance.

Originally published by jdnews.com

Thank a Veteran at Warsaw’s 99th Veteran’s Day Parade

Duplin County and the Town of Warsaw welcomes all to the 99th year of North Carolina’s Official Veterans Day Parade, and the oldest, continuously held Veterans Day Parade in the United States!  Join us on Saturday, Nov. 2nd for a day of festivities starting at 9 am that include fun for kids, craft and food vendors, a car show, a barbecue lunch, a flyover, and most importantly, a chance to thank a veteran.

The Town of Warsaw is just a little over an hour east of Raleigh off of I-40, and is centrally located between North Carolina’s three military installations;  Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, Fort Bragg in Fayetteville, and Seymour Johnson Air Force Base in Goldsboro.  Our community is rich with Eastern NC history and has an enduring sense of patriotism along with a strong commitment to honoring all of our military service personnel.

2019 Veterans Day Regional Site – Schedule of Events

7:30 – 9:30 am: Masonic Pancake Breakfast at Warsaw Baptist Church

9 am:  Food & Craft Vendors, and more

10 am: VFW Memorial Services at Veteran’s Park

11 am: Fly Over / Special Forces Parachute Jump and the Parade begins

12 pm: BBQ lunch at Warsaw VFD Downtown Fire Station

1 – 4 pm: Visit the Duplin County Veterans Museum for a tour as well as the truck show, and entertainment for the whole family.

The Duplin County Veteran’s Museum is located at 119 East Hill Street in the restored L. P. Best House. The museum itself is an outstanding example of Queen Anne/neoclassical style architecture.  The house was built in 1894 by its namesake and is the linchpin for the Warsaw Historic District which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as well as being a locally designated district.

To top off your day, enjoy wine tastings along with lunch or dinner at Warsaw’s infamous Country Squire. If you are looking for a getaway, please contact us for information about our escape packages!

We look forward to seeing you in Duplin County.

The Historic L.P. Best House / Duplin County Veterans Museum

Restored 1894 Queen Anne style house is dedicated to recognizing Duplin County servicemen and women through the display of military artifacts and memorabilia from years past.

Address: 119 E. Hill Street, Warsaw NC 28398
Phone Number: 910-293-2190
Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 10 am – 2 pm, and Saturday 12 – 4pm 
Memorial Day in Warsaw

Eastern North Carolina has a strong connection and a rich history with the United States Military. -Warsaw is wedged in the middle of the Fort Bragg, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, and Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, along with other smaller installations. Warsaw celebrates our country?s military with the Oldest Consecutive Veteran?s Day Celebration in America, a Memorial Day celebration, and the Duplin County Veterans Museum.

This year, the Warsaw Chamber of Commerce is holding a Memorial Day celebration on Monday, May 30th starting with a service at the Warsaw Baptist Church at 11AM. At 4PM, ?Pickin? In The Park? kicks off at the corner of North Gum Street and Memorial Drive. There will be rides, a rock wall, trackless train, mechanical bull, and various concessions. Be sure to stay until at least 9PM as there will be a fireworks display at dark.

For more information on the Memorial Day Celebration in Warsaw, call 910-293-7804 or visit www.townofwarsawnc.com.

A Chronology of Events in the History of Duplin County, NC

Compiled by Leon H. Sikes

Duplin County History


Welsh settlements between the Northeast Cape Fear River and the Black River, including the lower, southern part of what was to become Duplin County.


Settlement of Ulster Scots and Swiss Protestants on land granted to Henry McCulloch. These early settlements were at Sarecta, Goshen (Goshen Swamp) and Golden Grove or just the Grove (now Kenansville).


First recorded reference to the village of Sarecta (Soracte). First reference to the “Sarecta to the Welsh Tract Road”, one of the earliest county roads, (NC Hwy. 11 follows old road).


Area citizens respond to Spanish invasion threat at Wilmington known as the Spanish Alarm.


On April 7, Duplin County created from the northern part of New Hanover County. Named for Sir Thomas Hays, Lord Dupplin of Scotland.


First official county court held in the Goshen settlement area on Goshen Swamp (north of Kenansville), at the home of William McRee. A short time later the Courthouse was established on Turkey Swamp near the present-day Duplin/Sampson County line west of Warsaw.


Bear Marsh Baptist Church organized in northern Duplin, the first Baptist Church established in the County.


Revolutionary War. John Grady of northern Duplin County, was the only man killed on the American side in the Battle of Moores Creek Bridge February 27, 1776.


Duplin County Oath of Allegiance and Abjuration—a testimony of support and faithfulness to the State of North Carolina and a renouncement of the authority of Great Britain, was signed by twenty-five of Duplin’s early leaders.


General Cornwallis’ troops marched through Duplin on their way to Virginia and defeat. They encamped briefly at old Duplin Court House on Turkey Swamp.Battle of Rockfish Creek: The Duplin Militia, under the command of Col. Thomas Kenan, was routed by the British on August 2, 1781 near Wallace.


Sampson County created from the western half of Duplin County. Courthouse moved to a site more centrally located soon to become Kenansville.


Grove Academy organized and located in Kenansville. It was one of the earliest formal educational institutions in the county and state.


The village of Sarecta incorporated January 6,1787, Duplin’s first official town. (It  no longer functions as a town).


The beginning of Methodism in Duplin County.The first Federal census of Duplin County: 3,936 whites, 1,278 slaves.


War with Great Britian


Kenansville authorized to be laid out as a town.


Duplin’s second courthouse erected in Kenansville.


Wilmington and Raleigh Railroad completed through Duplin County.


War with Mexico


Town of Kenansville incorporated December 27, 1852.


The Duplin County Agricultural Society and Fair organized.


Town of Warsaw incorporated February 5, 1855. The village was known in its early beginnings as Duplin Depot and Mooresville. Town of Stricklandsville (Magnolia) incorporated February 15, 1855.


Warsaw to Clinton Plank Road completed and in operation.


Stricklandsville officially changed to Magnolia February 2, 1857.


Civil War begins.


Confederate Arms Factory in Kenansville destroyed by Federal troops on July 4.


Caleb Davis Bradham was born in Chinquapin. In 1898, in his drug store in New Bern, he created a new beverage called Pepsi Cola.


Twelve townships established August 14, 1868. (Rose Hill township created in 1897).


Town of Faison incorporated February 10, 1872.


Town of Duplin Roads (later Wallace) incorporated February 28, 1873.


Town of Teachey incorporated January 30, 1874.


Town of Rose Hill incorporated March 10, 1875.


The “North Carolina Amateur”, a highly acclaimed amateur newspaper, began publication in Rose Hill. Printed until 1888. Publishers were George Melvin Carr and W. B. Southerland.


President Grover Cleveland appointed Beautancus native, Dr. Ezekiel Ezra Smith, Ambassador to Liberia. Dr. Smith was Duplin’s first and only Ambassador and he was instrumental in the development of Fayetteville State University.


James Sprunt Institute established in Kenansville. Named in honor of Dr. James Menzies Sprunt educator, minister, Civil War Chaplain, botanist and Register of Deeds.


Spanish-American War


Town of Wallace incorporated March 4, 1899, formerly Duplin Roads.


Beginning in the early 1900s and continuing into the 1940s, (peaking in the 1920s and 1930s), the area around Wallace, Teachey, Rose Hill and Calypso produced and shipped more strawberries than any other area of the state.


Town of Bowden incorporated February 27, 1911. It no longer functions as a town.


Duplin County’s present courthouse completed and accepted on January 16,1913. Town of Calypso incorporated March 5, 1913.


World War I.


Town of Beulaville incorporated March 9, 1915.


First Armistice Day celebration held in Warsaw. Renamed Veterans Day in 1954 and continues to be celebrated each year. It is the oldest, continuous Veterans Day celebration in the United States.


Warsaw native, Henry L. Stevens, Jr., elected National Commander of the American Legion. He was instrumental in establishing the Veterans Day Celebration in Warsaw.


Four County REA first began installing electric power lines in the rural areas of the county. Four County REA organized in 1937.


World War 11


The Faison Fruit and Vegetable Exchange organized. The produce auction market began in the early 1920s in Faison.


“The Duplin Story”, an outdoor historical pageant commemorating the 200th anniversary of Duplin County, was presented. Staged again in 1950.


Korean War begins.


J. P. Stevens & Co. located in Wallace. The first major non-agricultural industry in Duplin.Christine W. Williams became the first woman to be elected Register of Deeds.


The beginning of the poultry industry in the county, soon to become Duplin’s largest industry.


The county’s hospital, Duplin General, completed. Hurricane Hazel devastated the area in October.


The Duplin County Fair reactivated and held in Beulaville. It was held in 1963, 1964, and 1965. First annual Rose Hill Poultry Jubilee held October l9, 1963. Later changed to the North Carolina Poultry Jubilee and featured the “world’s largest frying pan” 15 feet in diameter.


James Sprunt Institute re-established in Kenansville, later to become a part of the state community college system.


Vietnam War


Town of Greenevers incorporated October 27, 1969. Alex Brown was elected Mayor; first African-American to become Mayor of a Duplin County town.


The County’s first airport opened north of Kenansville.


“The Liberty Cart”, a historical outdoor drama, first performed in Kenansville.


The Duplin County Fair was re-established and is held each year in Kenansville. Dovie Penney became the first woman to be elected to the Board of County Commissioners.


Dr. William Edgar Thornton, a native of Faison, soared into space on August 30, becoming Duplin’s and North Carolina’s first astronaut.


The nation’s largest turkey processing plant, Carolina Turkey, built in Duplin County.


Zettie B. Williams was the first African American to be elected to the Board of County Commissioners.


Interstate Highway I-40 connecting Wilmington, North Carolina to Barstow, California completed through Duplin County.


Persian Gulf War


The outdoor drama, “The Song of Liberty” and the accompanying musical review “Carolina Country 93”, opened for its first season.


Town of Warsaw held it 75th Veterans Day Celebration


Hurricanes Bertha and Fran struck the area causing extensive damage.


Duplin County ranks number one in economic growth across the state.


Hurricane Floyd caused major flooding and extensive damage in county, many homes were destroyed.


Duplin County celebrated its 250th anniversary.