Ready for a Plaque?

Plaque Eligibility

Historic Wilmington Foundation’s plaque program is one of the most prolific in America: to date, we have given out over 670 plaques. Adorning cottages, mansions, alleyways, beach bungalows and more, HWF’s hand-painted plaques honor the heritage of communities across three North Carolina counties.

To be eligible for an HWF plaque, a property must be 75 years of age or older. (Buildings more than 50 years old at Kure Beach, Wrightsville Beach and Carolina Beach also qualify.) Russet plaques are for structures 75-99 years old; black plaques are for structures 100+ years old. As of fall 2019, HWF now has two more plaque designations: goldenrod plaques for structures 150-199 years old and sapphire blue plaques for structures 200+ years old! If your building is eligible and you’d like a new plaque, please contact Blair at or call 910.762.2511.

Cost of a Plaque

Effective October 1, 2020, plaques cost $345 for members, and $395 for non-members, payable at the time your plaque is ordered. An additional $50 discount is available for replacement plaques (for replacing one that is weathered, or for replacing a 75-year plaque for a 100-year plaque!).

Non-members become members for 1 year with the purchase of a plaque!

75-99 Years: Russet

100-149 Years: Black

150-199 Years: Goldenrod

200+ Years: Sapphire

The Application Process

Plaque ownership begins with research, and our application leads you through it step-by-step.

Once you submit your application for review by the Plaque Committee, you may be contacted if more information is needed.

The Plaque Committee usually meets on the second Wednesday of each month to discuss plaque applications. Applications should be submitted at least two weeks prior to monthly meetings; the applicant is also responsible for submitting a minimum of two exterior photos of their building–both digital AND hard copy (digital images to be emailed to Blair Middleton at HWF).

CLICK HERE to find a researcher.

Application Reviews

Applications are reviewed in the order they are received. Typically, the process from application review to receipt of plaque takes between three and four months. It may take less time, or more, but this legacy is worth the wait!

Due to the Covid crisis HWF is still accepting plaque applications, but processing is taking longer than usual.