North Carolina

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North Carolina
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{{About|the U.S. state|the British colony from 1712–1776|Province of North Carolina|other uses}}{{Redirect|The Old North State|the song of the same name|The Old North State (song)}}{{pp-move-indef}}{{Use mdy dates|date=December 2018}}

Esse quam videri:In 1893 the North Carolina General Assembly adopted the Latin words "Esse Quam Videri" as the state motto and directed that these words be placed with the state's Coat of Arms and the date "20 May 1775" upon the great seal.These words are also famous from Generalfeldmarschall Helmuth von Moltke the Elder: "Mehr sein als scheinen – viel leisten und wenig hervortreten." {{nowrap>"To be, rather than to seem" (official);}} {{nowrapFirst in flight>First in Flight}}The Old North State (song)>The Old North State| image_map = North Carolina in United States.svgQUOTATION=(A)PURPOSE. ENGLISH IS THE MOST COMMON LANGUAGE OF THE PEOPLE OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA. THIS SECTION IS INTENDED TO PRESERVE, PROTECT AND STRENGTHEN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, AND NOT TO SUPERSEDE ANY OF THE RIGHTS GUARANTEED TO THE PEOPLE BY THE CONSTITUTION OF THE UNITED STATES OR THE CONSTITUTION OF NORTH CAROLINA. (B) ENGLISH AS THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE OF NORTH CAROLINA. ENGLISH IS THE OFFICIAL LANGUAGE OF THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA.WEBSITE=NCGA.STATE.NC.CUSdate=July 2017 fix-attempted=yes }}PUBLISHER= MODERN LANGUAGE ASSOCIATION, August 11, 2012,
  • English 90.70%
  • Spanish 6.93%
  • Other 2.73%| population_demonym = North Carolinian (official);Tar Heel (colloquial)
Charlotte, North Carolina>CharlotteRaleigh, North Carolina>RaleighCharlotte metropolitan area>Greater Charlotte| area_rank = 28th| area_total_sq_mi = 53,819| area_total_km2 = 139,390| width_mi = 300| width_km = 300TITLE=NORTH CAROLINA CLIMATE AND GEOGRAPHY PUBLISHER=NORTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE, November 7, 2006, | length_km = 950| area_water_percent = 9.5| Latitude = 33° 50′ N to 36° 35′ N| Longitude = 75° 28′ W to 84° 19′ W| population_rank = 9th| 2010Pop = 10,383,620 (2018)TITLE=MEDIAN ANNUAL HOUSEHOLD INCOME, December 8, 2016, | 2000DensityUS = 208.7| 2000Density = 80.6| population_density_rank = 15th| IncomeRank = 39thMount Mitchell (North Carolina)>Mount MitchellHTTP://EGSC.USGS.GOV/ISB/PUBS/BOOKLETS/ELVADIST/ELVADIST.HTML >TITLE=ELEVATIONS AND DISTANCES IN THE UNITED STATES UNITED STATES GEOLOGICAL SURVEY >YEAR=2001 URL-STATUS=DEAD ARCHIVEDATE=OCTOBER 15, 2011, mdy-all, Elevation adjusted to North American Vertical Datum of 1988.| elevation_max_ft = 6,684| elevation_max_m = 2037| elevation_ft = 700| elevation_m = 210| elevation_min_point = Atlantic Ocean| elevation_min_m = 0| elevation_min_ft = 0| Former = Province of North-Carolina| AdmittanceDate = November 21, 1789| AdmittanceOrder = 12thRoy Cooper (D)}}Dan Forest (R)}}Cheri Beasley (Democratic Party (United States)>D)North Carolina General Assembly>General AssemblyNorth Carolina Senate>SenateNorth Carolina House of Representatives>House of RepresentativesRichard Burr (R)}}{{nowrap|Thom Tillis (R)}}| Representative = 10 Republicans3 DemocratsEastern Time Zone>Eastern| utc_offset1 = -05:00Eastern Daylight Time>EDT| utc_offset1_DST = -04:00| iso_code = US-NC| postal_code = NC| TradAbbreviation = N.C.| website = County, North Carolina>Wake| Old Capital = New Bern 1766, Hillsborogh NC, 1754| area_land_sq_mi = 48,711| area_land_km2 = 126,161| area_water_km2 = 5,108| ElectoralVotes = 15}}

North Carolina ({{IPAc-en|audio=en-us-North Carolina.ogg|ˌ|k|ær|ə|ˈ|l|aɪ|n|ə}}) is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States. North Carolina is the 28th largest and 9th-most populous of the 50 United States. It is bordered by Virginia to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, Georgia and South Carolina to the south, and Tennessee to the west. Raleigh is the state's capital and Charlotte is its largest city. The Charlotte metropolitan area, with an estimated population of 2,569,213 in 2018, is the most populous metropolitan area in North Carolina, the 23rd-most populous in the United States, and the largest banking center in the nation after New York City.NEWS,weblink Charlotte regains its place as No. 2 U.S. banking center. Will it keep it?, Roberts, Deon, November 15, 2018, December 1, 2018, The Charlotte Observer, North Carolina's second largest metropolitan area is the Raleigh metropolitan area, with an estimated population of 1,337,331 in 2018, and is home to the largest research park in the United States, Research Triangle Park, in Chapel Hill, Durham, and Raleigh.North Carolina was established as a royal colony in 1729 and is one of the original Thirteen Colonies. North Carolina is named in honor of King Charles I of England who first formed the English colony, with Carolus being Latin for "Charles". On November 21, 1789, North Carolina became the 12th state to ratify the United States Constitution. North Carolina declared its secession from the Union on May 20, 1861, becoming the last of eleven states to join the Confederate States. Following the Civil War, the state was restored to the Union on June 25, 1868.BOOK,weblink The A to Z of the Civil War and Reconstruction, Richter, William L. (William Lee), 1942-, 2009, Scarecrow Press, Richter, William L. (William Lee), 1942-, 9780810863361, Lanham, 435767707, On December 17, 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright successfully piloted the world's first controlled, sustained flight of a powered, heavier-than-air aircraft at Kill Devil Hills in North Carolina's Outer Banks. North Carolina uses the slogan "First in Flight" on state license plates to commemorate this achievement.North Carolina is defined by a wide range of elevations and landscapes. From west to east, North Carolina's elevation descends from the Appalachian Mountains to the Piedmont and Atlantic coastal plain. North Carolina's Mount Mitchell at 6,684 feet (2,037 m) is the highest-point in North America east of the Mississippi River.WEB,weblink Mount Mitchell State Park, November 7, 2010, Most of the state falls in the humid subtropical climate zone; however, the western, mountainous part of the state has a subtropical highland climate.


File:North carolina algonkin-rituale01.jpg|thumb|Ceremony of Secotan warriors in North Carolina. Watercolour painted by English colonist John White in 1585.]]File:Our Savage Manteo - Stierch.jpg|thumb|right| A plaque to commemorate the first indigenous person who was converted to Christianity, Manteo at the Roanoke Colony]]File:Dr. M.T. Pope.jpg|thumb|upright|Dr. M. T. Pope (after whom the Pope House Museum was named), a prominent citizen of Raleigh.]]File:North-Carolina-Museum-of-History-20080321.jpeg|thumb|The North Carolina Museum of HistoryNorth Carolina Museum of HistoryWoodland-culture Native Americans were in the area around 1000 BCE; starting around 750 CE, Mississippian-culture Indians created larger political units with stronger leadership and more stable, longer-term settlements. During this time, important buildings were constructed as pyramidal, flat-topped buildings. By 1550, many groups of American Indians lived in present-day North Carolina, including Chowanoke, Roanoke, Pamlico, Machapunga, Coree, Cape Fear Indians, Waxhaw, Waccamaw, and Catawba.WEB, North Carolina American Indian History Time Line,weblink September 14, 2016, North Carolina Museum of History, Juan Pardo explored the area in 1566–1567, establishing Fort San Juan in 1567 at the site of the Native American community of Joara, a Mississippian culture regional chiefdom in the western interior, near the present-day city of Morganton. The fort lasted only 18 months; the local inhabitants killed all but one of the 120 men Pardo had stationed at a total of six forts in the area.WEB,weblink Richards, Constance E., Contact and Conflict, American Archaeology, Spring 2008, 14, June 26, 2008, A later expedition by Philip Amadas and Arthur Barlowe followed in 1584, at the direction of Sir Walter Raleigh.In June 1718, the pirate Blackbeard ran his flagship, the Queen Anne's Revenge, aground at Beaufort Inlet, North Carolina, in present-day Carteret County. After the grounding her crew and supplies were transferred to smaller ships. In November, after appealing to the governor of North Carolina, who promised safe-haven and a pardon, Blackbeard was killed in an ambush by troops from Virginia.WEB, Blackbeard killed off North Carolina,weblink, 9 February 2010, In 1996 Intersal, Inc., a private firm, discovered the remains of a vessel likely to be the Queen Anne's Revenge, which was added to the US National Register of Historic Places.D. Moore. (1997) "A General History of Blackbeard the Pirate, the Queen Anne's Revenge and the Adventure". In Tributaries, Volume VII, 1997. pp. 31–35. (North Carolina Maritime History Council).North Carolina became one of the English Thirteen Colonies and with the territory of South Carolina was originally known as the Province of North-Carolina. The northern and southern parts of the original province separated in 1729. Originally settled by small farmers, sometimes having a few slaves, who were oriented toward subsistence agriculture, the colony lacked cities or towns. Pirates menaced the coastal settlements, but by 1718 the pirates had been captured and killed. Growth was strong in the middle of the 18th century, as the economy attracted Scots-Irish, Quaker, English and German immigrants. A majority of the colonists generally supported the American Revolution, and a smaller number of Loyalists than in some other colonies such as Georgia, South Carolina, Delaware, New York.During colonial times, Edenton served as the state capital beginning in 1722, and New Bern was selected as the capital in 1766. Construction of Tryon Palace, which served as the residence and offices of the provincial governor William Tryon, began in 1767 and was completed in 1771. In 1788 Raleigh was chosen as the site of the new capital, as its central location protected it from coastal attacks. Officially established in 1792 as both county seat and state capital, the city was named after Sir Walter Raleigh, sponsor of Roanoke, the "lost colony" on Roanoke Island.WEB,weblink Capitol History, May 16, 2013, North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources,weblink" title="">weblink October 29, 2013, dead, The population of the colony more than quadrupled from 52,000 in 1740 to 270,000 in 1780 from high immigration from Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania plus immigrants from abroad.Wiki Article Historical Demography of the United States.North Carolina made the smallest per-capita contribution to the war of any state, as only 7,800 men joined the Continental Army under General George Washington; an additional 10,000 served in local militia units under such leaders as General Nathanael Greene.Milton Ready, The Tar Heel State: A History of North Carolina (U. of South Carolina Press, 2005), pp. 116, 120. There was some military action, especially in 1780–81. Many Carolinian frontiersmen had moved west over the mountains, into the Washington District (later known as Tennessee), but in 1789, following the Revolution, the state was persuaded to relinquish its claim to the western lands. It ceded them to the national government so that the Northwest Territory could be organized and managed nationally.After 1800, cotton and tobacco became important export crops. The eastern half of the state, especially the Tidewater region, developed a slave society based on a plantation system and slave labor. Many free people of color migrated to the frontier along with their European-American neighbors, where the social system was looser. By 1810, nearly 3 percent of the free population consisted of free people of color, who numbered slightly more than 10,000. The western areas were dominated by white families, especially Scots-Irish, who operated small subsistence farms. In the early national period, the state became a center of Jeffersonian and Jacksonian democracy, with a strong Whig presence, especially in the West. After Nat Turner's slave uprising in 1831, North Carolina and other southern states reduced the rights of free blacks. In 1835 the legislature withdrew their right to vote.On May 20, 1861, North Carolina was the last of the Confederate states to declare secession from the Union, 13 days after the Tennessee legislature voted for secession. Some 125,000 North Carolinians served in the military; 20,000 were killed in battle, the most of any state in the Confederacy, and 21,000 died of disease. The state government was reluctant to support the demands of the national government in Richmond, and the state was the scene of only small battles.With the defeat of the Confederacy in 1865, the Reconstruction Era began. The United States abolished slavery without compensation to slaveholders or reparations to freedmen. A Republican Party coalition of black freedmen, northern carpetbaggers and local scalawags controlled state government for three years. The white conservative Democrats regained control of the state legislature in 1870, in part by Ku Klux Klan violence and terrorism at the polls, to suppress black voting. Republicans were elected to the governorship until 1876, when the Red Shirts, a paramilitary organization that arose in 1874 and was allied with the Democratic Party, helped suppress black voting. More than 150 black Americans were murdered in electoral violence in 1876.Post civil war-debt cycles pushed people to switch from subsistence agriculture to commodity agriculture. Among this time the notorious Crop-Lien system developed and was financially difficult on landless whites and blacks, due to high amounts of usury. Also due to the push for commodity agriculture, the free range was ended. Prior to this time people fenced in their crops and had their livestock feeding on the free range areas. After the ending of the free range people now fenced their animals and had their crops in the open.{{citation needed|date=February 2019}}Democrats were elected to the legislature and governor's office, but the Populists attracted voters displeased with them. In 1896 a biracial, Populist-Republican Fusionist coalition gained the governor's office and passed laws that would extend the voting franchise to blacks and poor whites. The Democrats regained control of the legislature in 1896 and passed laws to impose Jim Crow and racial segregation of public facilities. Voters of North Carolina's 2nd congressional district elected a total of four African-American congressmen through these years of the late 19th century.Political tensions ran so high that a small group of white Democrats in 1898 planned to take over the Wilmington government if their candidates were not elected. In the Wilmington Insurrection of 1898, more than 1,500 white men attacked the black newspaper and neighborhood, killed numerous men, and ran off the white Republican mayor and aldermen. They installed their own people and elected Alfred M. Waddell as mayor, in the only coup d'état in United States history."Chapter 5" {{Webarchive|url= |date=March 21, 2009 }}, 1898 Wilmington Race Riot Commission Report, North Carolina Dept. of Cultural Resources.In 1899 the state legislature passed a new constitution, with requirements for poll taxes and literacy tests for voter registration which disenfranchised most black Americans in the state.Richard H. Pildes, "Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Canon", Constitutional Commentary, Vol.17, 2000, p. 27. Retrieved March 10, 2008. Exclusion from voting had wide effects: it meant that black Americans could not serve on juries or in any local office. After a decade of white supremacy, many people forgot that North Carolina had ever had thriving middle-class black Americans.Pildes (2000), "Democracy, Anti-Democracy, and the Canon", pp. 12–13. Black citizens had no political voice in the state until after the federal Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Voting Rights Act of 1965 were passed to enforce their constitutional rights. It was not until 1992 that another African American was elected as a US Representative from North Carolina.As in the rest of the former Confederacy, North Carolina had become a one-party state, dominated by the Democratic Party. Impoverished by the Civil War and vicious debt cycles, the state continued with an economy based on tobacco, cotton textiles and commodity agriculture. Towns and cities remained few in the east. A major industrial base emerged in the late 19th century in the counties of the Piedmont, based on cotton mills established at the fall line. Railroads were built to connect the new industrializing cities. The state was the site of the first successful controlled, powered and sustained heavier-than-air flight, by the Wright brothers, near Kitty Hawk on December 17, 1903. In the first half of the 20th century, many African Americans left the state to go North for better opportunities, in the Great Migration. Their departure changed the demographic characteristics of many areas.North Carolina was hard hit by the Great Depression, but the New Deal programs of Franklin D. Roosevelt for cotton and tobacco significantly helped the farmers. After World War II, the state's economy grew rapidly, highlighted by the growth of such cities as Charlotte, Raleigh, and Durham in the Piedmont. Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill form the Research Triangle, a major area of universities and advanced scientific and technical research. In the 1990s, Charlotte became a major regional and national banking center. Tourism has also been a boon for the North Carolina economy as people flock to the Outer Banks coastal area and the Appalachian Mountains anchored by Asheville.By the 1970s, spurred in part by the increasingly leftward tilt of national Democrats, conservative whites began to vote for Republican national candidates and gradually for more Republicans locally. The Greensboro Sit-ins played a crucial role in the Civil Rights Movement to bring full equality to American blacks.

Native Americans, lost colonies, and permanent settlement

{{See also|Native Americans in the United States|Joara|Roanoke Island|Fort Raleigh National Historic Site}}File:The Carte of all the Coast of Virginia by Theodor de Bry 1585 1586.jpg|thumb|left|Map of the coast of Virginia and North Carolina, drawn 1585–1586 by Theodor de Bry, based on map by John White of the Roanoke ColonyRoanoke ColonyNorth Carolina was inhabited for at least ten thousand years by succeeding prehistoric indigenous cultures. The Hardaway Site saw major periods of occupation as far back as 10,000 years. Before 200 AD, they were building earthwork mounds, which were used for ceremonial and religious purposes. Succeeding peoples, including those of the ancient Mississippian culture established by 1000 AD in the Piedmont, continued to build or add on to such mounds. In the 500–700 years preceding European contact, the Mississippian culture built large, complex cities and maintained far-flung regional trading networks. Its largest city was Cahokia, located in present-day Illinois near the Mississippi River.Historically documented tribes in the North Carolina region include the Carolina Algonquian-speaking tribes of the coastal areas, such as the Chowanoke, Roanoke, Pamlico, Machapunga, Coree, and Cape Fear Indians, who were the first encountered by the English; the Iroquoian-speaking Meherrin, Cherokee, and Tuscarora of the interior; and Southeastern Siouan tribes, such as the Cheraw, Waxhaw, Saponi, Waccamaw, and Catawba.Spanish explorers traveling inland in the 16th century met Mississippian culture people at Joara, a regional chiefdom near present-day Morganton. Records of Hernando de Soto attested to his meeting with them in 1540. In 1567 Captain Juan Pardo led an expedition to claim the area for the Spanish colony and to establish another route to protect silver mines in Mexico. Pardo made a winter base at Joara, which he renamed Cuenca. His expedition built Fort San Juan and left a contingent of 30 men there, while Pardo traveled further, and built and garrisoned five other forts. He returned by a different route to Santa Elena on Parris Island, South Carolina, then a center of Spanish Florida. In the spring of 1568, natives killed all but one of the soldiers and burned the six forts in the interior, including the one at Fort San Juan. Although the Spanish never returned to the interior, this effort marked the first European attempt at colonization of the interior of what became the United States. A 16th-century journal by Pardo's scribe Bandera and archaeological findings since 1986 at Joara have confirmed the settlement.WEB, Patrick Gibbs,weblink David G., Moore, Robin A., Beck Jr., Christopher B., Rodning, Joara and Fort San Juan: culture contact at the edge of the world, 78, No. 229,, March 2004, July 24, 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 24, 2011, mdy-all, File:Croatoan.jpg|thumb|right|John White returns to find the colony abandoned]]In 1584, Elizabeth I granted a charter to Sir Walter Raleigh, for whom the state capital is named, for land in present-day North Carolina (then part of the territory of Virginia).BOOK, Randinelli, Tracey, Tanglewood Park, Harcourt, Orlando, Florida, 16, Roanoke Colony>Lost Colony" of Roanoke Island remains one of the most widely debated mysteries of American history. Virginia Dare, the first English child to be born in North America, was born on Roanoke Island on August 18, 1587; Dare County is named for her.As early as 1650, settlers from the Virginia colony moved into the area of Albemarle Sound. By 1663, King Charles II of England granted a charter to start a new colony on the North American continent; it generally established North Carolina's borders. He named it Carolina in honor of his father Charles I.WEB,weblink North Carolina State Library – North Carolina History,, July 24, 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink February 5, 2009, mdy-all, By 1665, a second charter was issued to attempt to resolve territorial questions. In 1710, owing to disputes over governance, the Carolina colony began to split into North Carolina and South Carolina. The latter became a crown colony in 1729.In the 1700s, a series of smallpox epidemics swept the South, causing high fatalities among the Native Americans, who had no immunity to the new disease (it had become endemic in Europe).WEB,weblink Cherokee Indians,, November 16, 1919, July 24, 2011, According to the historian Russell Thornton, "The 1738 epidemic was said to have killed one-half of the Cherokee, with other tribes of the area suffering equally."Russell Thornton (1990) American Indian Holocaust and Survival: A Population History since 1492, University of Oklahoma Press. p.79. {{ISBN|0-8061-2220-X}}

Colonial period and Revolutionary War

File:Tryon Palace.JPG|thumb|Reconstructed royal governor's mansion Tryon Palace in New Bern ]]After the Spanish in the 16th century, the first permanent European settlers of North Carolina were English colonists who migrated south from Virginia. The latter had grown rapidly and land was less available. Nathaniel Batts was documented as one of the first of these Virginian migrants. He settled south of the Chowan River and east of the Great Dismal Swamp in 1655.Fenn and Wood, Natives and Newcomers, pp. 24–25. By 1663, this northeastern area of the Province of Carolina, known as the Albemarle Settlements, was undergoing full-scale English settlement.Powell, North Carolina Through Four Centuries, p. 105. During the same period, the English monarch Charles II gave the province to the Lords Proprietors, a group of noblemen who had helped restore Charles to the throne in 1660. The new province of "Carolina" was named in honor and memory of King Charles I (Latin: Carolus). In 1712, North Carolina became a separate colony. Except for the Earl Granville holdings, it became a royal colony seventeen years later.Lefler and Newsome, (1973). A large revolt happened in the state in 1711 known as Cary's Rebellion.Differences in the settlement patterns of eastern and western North Carolina, or the Low Country and uplands, affected the political, economic, and social life of the state from the 18th until the 20th century. The Tidewater in eastern North Carolina was settled chiefly by immigrants from rural England and the Scottish Highlands. The upcountry of western North Carolina was settled chiefly by Scots-Irish, English, and German Protestants, the so-called "cohee". Arriving during the mid- to late 18th century, the Scots-Irish from what is today Northern Ireland were the largest non-English immigrant group before the Revolution; English indentured servants were overwhelmingly the largest immigrant group before the Revolution.WEB, Bethune, Lawrence E, Scots to Colonial North Carolina Before 1775, Lawrence E. Bethune's M.U.S.I.C.s Project,weblink WEB,weblink Ancestry of the Population by State: 1980 – Table 3a – Persons Who Reported a Single Ancestry Group for Regions, Divisions and States, May 11, 2012, WEB,weblink Table 1. Type of Ancestry Response for Regions, Divisions and States: 1980, May 11, 2012, WEB,weblink Indentured Servitude in Colonial America,, May 11, 2012, dead,weblink" title="">weblink October 22, 2009, mdy-all, During the American Revolutionary War, the English and Highland Scots of eastern North Carolina tended to remain loyal to the British Crown, because of longstanding business and personal connections with Great Britain. The English, Welsh, Scots-Irish, and German settlers of western North Carolina tended to favor American independence from Britain.Most of the English colonists had arrived as indentured servants, hiring themselves out as laborers for a fixed period to pay for their passage. In the early years the line between indentured servants and African slaves or laborers was fluid. Some Africans were allowed to earn their freedom before slavery became a lifelong status. Most of the free colored families formed in North Carolina before the Revolution were descended from unions or marriages between free white women and enslaved or free African or African-American men. Because the mothers were free, their children were born free. Many had migrated or were descendants of migrants from colonial Virginia.WEB,weblink Paul Heinegg, Free African Americans in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland and Delaware,, July 24, 2011, As the flow of indentured laborers to the colony decreased with improving economic conditions in Great Britain, planters imported more slaves, and the state's legal delineations between free and slave status tightened, effectively hardening the latter into a racial caste. The economy's growth and prosperity was based on slave labor, devoted primarily to the production of tobacco.On April 12, 1776, the colony became the first to instruct its delegates to the Continental Congress to vote for independence from the British Crown, through the Halifax Resolves passed by the North Carolina Provincial Congress. The date of this event is memorialized on the state flag and state seal. Throughout the Revolutionary War, fierce guerrilla warfare erupted between bands of pro-independence and pro-British colonists. In some cases the war was also an excuse to settle private grudges and rivalries. A major American victory in the war took place at King's Mountain along the North Carolina–South Carolina border; on October 7, 1780, a force of 1000 mountain men from western North Carolina (including what is today the state of Tennessee) and southwest Virginia overwhelmed a force of some 1000 British troops led by Major Patrick Ferguson. Most of the soldiers fighting for the British side in this battle were Carolinians who had remained loyal to the Crown (they were called "Tories" or Loyalists). The American victory at Kings Mountain gave the advantage to colonists who favored American independence, and it prevented the British Army from recruiting new soldiers from the Tories.File:Battle of Guiliford Courthouse 15 March 1781.jpg|thumb|left|1st Maryland Regiment holding the line at the Battle of GuilfordBattle of GuilfordThe road to Yorktown and America's independence from Great Britain led through North Carolina. As the British Army moved north from victories in Charleston and Camden, South Carolina, the Southern Division of the Continental Army and local militia prepared to meet them. Following General Daniel Morgan's victory over the British Cavalry Commander Banastre Tarleton at the Battle of Cowpens on January 17, 1781, southern commander Nathanael Greene led British Lord Charles Cornwallis across the heartland of North Carolina, and away from the latter's base of supply in Charleston, South Carolina. This campaign is known as "The Race to the Dan" or "The Race for the River".In the Battle of Cowan's Ford, Cornwallis met resistance along the banks of the Catawba River at Cowan's Ford on February 1, 1781, in an attempt to engage General Morgan's forces during a tactical withdrawal.Stonestreet, Ottis C. IV, The Battle of Cowan's Ford: General Davidson's Stand on the Catawba River and its place in North Carolina History (CreateSpace Publishing 2012) {{ISBN|978-1-4680-7730-8}} p. 3. Morgan had moved to the northern part of the state to combine with General Greene's newly recruited forces. Generals Greene and Cornwallis finally met at the Battle of Guilford Courthouse in present-day Greensboro on March 15, 1781. Although the British troops held the field at the end of the battle, their casualties at the hands of the numerically superior Continental Army were crippling. Following this "Pyrrhic victory", Cornwallis chose to move to the Virginia coastline to get reinforcements, and to allow the Royal Navy to protect his battered army. This decision would result in Cornwallis' eventual defeat at Yorktown, Virginia, later in 1781. The Patriots' victory there guaranteed American independence.

Antebellum period

On November 21, 1789, North Carolina became the twelfth state to ratify the Constitution. In 1840, it completed the state capitol building in Raleigh, still standing today. Most of North Carolina's slave owners and large plantations were located in the eastern portion of the state. Although North Carolina's plantation system was smaller and less cohesive than that of Virginia, Georgia, or South Carolina, significant numbers of planters were concentrated in the counties around the port cities of Wilmington and Edenton, as well as suburban planters around the cities of Raleigh, Charlotte, and Durham in the Piedmont. Planters owning large estates wielded significant political and socio-economic power in antebellum North Carolina, which was a slave society. They placed their interests above those of the generally non-slave-holding "yeoman" farmers of western North Carolina. In mid-century, the state's rural and commercial areas were connected by the construction of a {{convert|129|mi|adj=on|abbr=on}} wooden plank road, known as a "farmer's railroad", from Fayetteville in the east to Bethania (northwest of Winston-Salem).File:Map North Carolina roads and railroads 1854.jpg|thumb|MapMapBesides slaves, there were a number of free people of color in the state. Most were descended from free African Americans who had migrated along with neighbors from Virginia during the 18th century. The majority were the descendants of unions in the working classes between white women, indentured servants or free, and African men, indentured, slave or free.Paul Heinegg, Free African Americans in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Maryland and Delaware, 2005. After the Revolution, Quakers and Mennonites worked to persuade slaveholders to free their slaves. Some were inspired by their efforts and the language of the Revolution to arrange for manumission of their slaves. The number of free people of color rose markedly in the first couple of decades after the Revolution.John Hope Franklin, Free Negroes of North Carolina, 1789–1860, Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1941, reprint, 1991.On October 25, 1836, construction began on the Wilmington and Raleigh RailroadWEB,weblink NC Business History – Railroads,, July 24, 2011, to connect the port city of Wilmington with the state capital of Raleigh. In 1849 the North Carolina Railroad was created by act of the legislature to extend that railroad west to Greensboro, High Point, and Charlotte. During the Civil War, the Wilmington-to-Raleigh stretch of the railroad would be vital to the Confederate war effort; supplies shipped into Wilmington would be moved by rail through Raleigh to the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.During the antebellum period, North Carolina was an overwhelmingly rural state, even by Southern standards. In 1860 only one North Carolina town, the port city of Wilmington, had a population of more than 10,000. Raleigh, the state capital, had barely more than 5,000 residents.While slaveholding was slightly less concentrated than in some Southern states, according to the 1860 census, more than 330,000 people, or 33% of the population of 992,622, were enslaved African Americans.WEB, Historical Census Browser:Census Data for Year 1860, 2004, June 26, 2014, University of Virginia Library,weblink dead,weblink" title="">weblink October 11, 2014, They lived and worked chiefly on plantations in the eastern Tidewater. In addition, 30,463 free people of color lived in the state. They were also concentrated in the eastern coastal plain, especially at port cities such as Wilmington and New Bern, where a variety of jobs were available. Free African Americans were allowed to vote until 1835, when the state revoked their suffrage in restrictions following the slave rebellion of 1831 led by Nat Turner. Southern slave codes criminalized willful killing of a slave in most cases.BOOK, Morris, Thomas D., Southern Slavery and the Law, 1619-1860,weblink University of North Carolina Press, 1999, 172, 978-0807864302,

American Civil War

{{Further|American Civil War}}File:Battle of Fort Fisher.jpg|thumb|right|Union troops capture Fort FisherFort FisherNorth Carolina was known as a 'Slave State' by 1860, in which one-third of the population was enslaved. This was a smaller proportion than in many other Southern states. The state did not vote to join the Confederacy until President Abraham Lincoln called on it to invade its sister state, South Carolina, becoming the last or penultimate state to officially join the Confederacy. The title of "last to join the Confederacy" has been disputed; although Tennessee's informal secession on May 7, 1861, preceded North Carolina's official secession on May 20,WEB,weblink Center for Civic Education – Lincoln Bicentennial with Supplemental Lesson: Timeline,, July 24, 2011, WEB,weblink Highlights: Secession,, July 24, 2011, the Tennessee legislature did not formally vote to secede until June 8, 1861.WEB,weblink Today in History: June 8,, April 9, 1959, July 24, 2011, Despite the State supplying the Confederacy with at least 125,000 troops, and Union with approx. 15,000 troops of all ranks it saw little action on its territory. The supply of Confederate troops was by far the greatest number of any of the Confederate States, of which approximately 40,000 of those died: more than half from disease, the remainder from battlefield wounds and starvation.WEB,weblink Civil War Facts About North Carolina, June 28, 2006,, July 24, 2011, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 23, 2011, mdy-all, Elected in 1862, Governor Zebulon Baird Vance tried to maintain state autonomy against Confederate President Jefferson Davis in Richmond.File:Silent Sam.jpg|thumb|left|Statue of a Confederate soldier Silent Sam, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, by John Wilson ]]After secession, some North Carolinians refused to support the Confederacy. Some of the yeoman farmers in the state's mountains and western Piedmont region remained neutral during the Civil War, while some covertly supported the Union cause during the conflict. Approximately 2,000 North Carolinians from western North Carolina enlisted in the Union Army and fought for the North in the war. Two additional Union Army regiments were raised in the coastal areas of the state, which were occupied by Union forces in 1862 and 1863. Numerous slaves escaped to Union lines, where they became essentially free.Confederate troops from all parts of North Carolina served in virtually all the major battles of the Army of Northern Virginia, the Confederacy's most famous army. The largest battle fought in North Carolina was at Bentonville, which was a futile attempt by Confederate General Joseph Johnston to slow Union General William Tecumseh Sherman's advance through the Carolinas in the spring of 1865. In April 1865, after losing the Battle of Morrisville, Johnston surrendered to Sherman at Bennett Place, in what is today Durham. North Carolina's port city of Wilmington was the last Confederate port to fall to the Union, in February 1865, after the Union won the nearby Second Battle of Fort Fisher, its major defense downriver.File:2008-08-16 Bennett Place historic site.jpg|thumb|right|Bennett Place historic site in Durham ]]The first Confederate soldier to be killed in the Civil War was Private Henry Wyatt from North Carolina, in the Battle of Big Bethel in June 1861. At the Battle of Gettysburg in July 1863, the 26th North Carolina Regiment participated in Pickett/Pettigrew's Charge and advanced the farthest into the Northern lines of any Confederate regiment. During the Battle of Chickamauga, the 58th North Carolina Regiment advanced farther than any other regiment on Snodgrass Hill to push back the remaining Union forces from the battlefield. At Appomattox Court House in Virginia in April 1865, the 75th North Carolina Regiment, a cavalry unit, fired the last shots of the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the Civil War. For many years, North Carolinians proudly boasted that they had been "First at Bethel, Farthest at Gettysburg and Chickamauga, and Last at Appomattox".


(File:North Carolina Köppen.svg|thumb|Köppen climate types of North Carolina)File:North carolina topographic.jpg|thumb|right|North Carolina topographic map. North Carolina's three topographic regions are evident: the Appalachian Mountains in brown, the Piedmont in yellow, and the Atlantic Coastal PlainAtlantic Coastal PlainFile:Rainy Blue Ridge-27527.jpg|thumb|right|The Blue Ridge Mountains as seen from the Blue Ridge ParkwayBlue Ridge ParkwayFile:Enodeer.jpg|thumb|Deer in the Eno RiverEno RiverFile:Road near Tellico Plains.jpg|thumb|View at end of Cherohala SkywayCherohala SkywayNorth Carolina is bordered by South Carolina on the south, Georgia on the southwest, Tennessee on the west, Virginia on the north, and the Atlantic Ocean on the east. The United States Census Bureau places North Carolina in the South Atlantic division of the southern region.WEB,weblink Census Regions and Divisions of the United States, United States Census Bureau, Geography Division, December 15, 2018, mdy-all, North Carolina consists of three main geographic regions: the Atlantic coastal plain, occupying the eastern portion of the state; the central Piedmont region, and the Mountain region in the west, which is part of the Appalachian Mountains. The coastal plain consists of more specifically-defined areas known as the Outer Banks, a string of sandy, narrow barrier islands separated from the mainland by sounds or inlets, including Albemarle Sound and Pamlico Sound, the tidewater region, the native home of the venus flytrap, and the inner coastal plain, where longleaf pine trees are native.So many ships have been lost off Cape Hatteras that the area is known as the "Graveyard of the Atlantic"; more than 1,000 ships have sunk in these waters since records began in 1526. The most famous of these is the Queen Anne's Revenge (flagship of the pirate Blackbeard), which went aground in Beaufort Inlet in 1718.WEB, Blackbeard's Queen Anne's Revenge Coming Back to Beaufort, Beach Carolina Magazine, March 30, 2011,weblink dead,weblink" title="">weblink February 21, 2013, mdy-all, The coastal plain transitions to the Piedmont region along the Atlantic Seaboard fall line, the elevation at which waterfalls first appear on streams and rivers. The Piedmont region of central North Carolina is the state's most populous region, containing the six largest cities in the state by population.WEB, People of North Carolina,weblink North Carolina State Board of Education, August 7, 2016, It consists of gently rolling countryside frequently broken by hills or low mountain ridges. Small, isolated, and deeply eroded mountain ranges and peaks are located in the Piedmont, including the Sauratown Mountains, Pilot Mountain, the Uwharrie Mountains, Crowder's Mountain, King's Pinnacle, the Brushy Mountains, and the South Mountains. The Piedmont ranges from about {{convert|300|ft}} in elevation in the east to about {{convert|1500|ft}} in the west.The western section of the state is part of the Appalachian Mountain range. Among the subranges of the Appalachians located in the state are the Great Smoky Mountains, Blue Ridge Mountains, and Black Mountains.WEB,weblink Facts About North Carolina Mountains, USA Today, August 7, 2016, WEB, Facts for North Carolina's Mountain Region,weblink January 21, 2011, August 8, 2016, Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina, dead,weblink August 12, 2016, mdy-all, The Black Mountains are the highest in the eastern United States, and culminate in Mount Mitchell at {{convert|6684|ft}}, the highest point east of the Mississippi River.WEB
, April 29, 2005
, Elevations and Distances in the United States
, U.S Geological Survey
, November 6, 2006
, dead
,weblink" title="">weblink
, January 16, 2008
, mdy-all
, File:cullasaja.jpg|thumb|upright|left|Cullasaja Falls in Macon County ]]North Carolina has 17 major river basins. The five basins west of the Blue Ridge Mountains flow to the Gulf of Mexico, while the remainder flow to the Atlantic Ocean.WEB,weblink North Carolina River Basins, North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, August 7, 2016, Of the 17 basins, 11 originate within the state of North Carolina, but only four are contained entirely within the state's border – the Cape Fear, the Neuse, the White Oak, and the Tar–Pamlico basin.WEB, River Basin Interactive Map, NC Office of Environmental Education, June 10, 2014,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink April 11, 2014, dead, mdy-all,

Flora and fauna

{{further|Wildlife of North Carolina}}


File:Snow in old fort.JPG|thumb|right|Snow in Old Fort, North CarolinaOld Fort, North CarolinaFile:Graveyard Fields 3.jpg|thumb|Graveyard FieldsGraveyard FieldsFile:2009 Coca-Cola 600.jpg|thumb|A rainy day at Charlotte Motor SpeedwayCharlotte Motor SpeedwayElevation above sea level is most responsible for temperature change across the state, with the mountain area being coolest year-round. The climate is also influenced by the Atlantic Ocean and the Gulf Stream, especially in the coastal plain. These influences tend to cause warmer winter temperatures along the coast, where temperatures only occasionally drop below the freezing point at night. The coastal plain averages around {{convert|1|in|cm|1}} of snow or ice annually, and in many years, there may be no snow or ice at all.WEB,weblink Overview, State Climate Office of North Carolina, August 7, 2016, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 31, 2016, mdy-all, The Atlantic Ocean exerts less influence on the climate of the Piedmont region, which has hotter summers and colder winters than along the coast, though the average daily maximum is still below {{convert|90|°F|0}} in most locations.North Carolina experiences severe weather in both summer and winter, with summer bringing threat of hurricanes, tropical storms, heavy rain, and flooding.WEB,weblink Severe Weather – Summer Storms, North Carolina Department of Transportation, August 7, 2016,weblink August 15, 2016, dead, mdy-all, Destructive hurricanes that have hit North Carolina include Hurricane Fran, Hurricane Florence, Hurricane Floyd, and Hurricane Hazel, the latter being the strongest storm ever to make landfall in the state, as a Category 4 in 1954. Hurricane Isabel ranks as the most destructive of the 21st century.{{Atlantic hurricane best track}}BOOK, John Hairr, The Great Hurricanes of North Carolina, 2008, 139–150, North Carolina averages fewer than 20  tornadoes per year, many of them produced by hurricanes or tropical storms along the coastal plain. Tornadoes from thunderstorms are a risk, especially in the eastern part of the state. Western Piedmont is often protected by the mountains, which tend to break up storms as they try to cross over; the storms will often re-form farther east. A phenomenon is known as "cold-air damming" often occurs in the northwestern part of the state, which can weaken storms but can also lead to major ice events in winter.WEB, NOAA National Climatic Data Center,weblink October 24, 2006, In April 2011, the worst tornado outbreak in North Carolina's history occurred. Thirty confirmed tornadoes touched down, mainly in the Eastern Piedmont and Sandhills, killing at least 24 people.WEB,weblink April 16, 2011 North Carolina Tornado Outbreak, National Weather Service, February 3, 2012, August 7, 2016, WEB,weblink North Carolina's largest tornado outbreak – April 16, 2011, August 7, 2016, April 16, 2013, US Tornadoes, In September 2019 Hurricane Dorian hit the area.{| class="wikitable" style="text-align:center;font-size:90%;"Monthly normal high and low temperatures (Fahrenheit) for various North Carolina cities.! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000; height:17px;"| City! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Jan! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Feb! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Mar! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Apr! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| May! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Jun! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Jul! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Aug! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Sep! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Oct! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Nov! style="background:#e5afaa; color:#000;"| Dec! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| AshevilleWEB
, NowData – NOAA Online Weather Data
, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
, December 16, 2011, 47/27
51/30 59/35 68/43 75/51 81/60 84/64 83/63 77/56 68/45 59/36 49/29! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| BooneWEB
, NOWData – NOAA Online Weather Data
, December 4, 2012
, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 42/21
45/23 52/29 61/37 69/46 76/54 79/58 78/57 72/50 63/39 54/31 45/24! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Cape HatterasWEB,weblink NOWData – NOAA Online Weather Data, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, April 14, 2012, 52/39 54/40 59/45 66/53 74/61 81/69 85/74 84/73 80/69 72/60 64/51 56/43! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| Charlotte 51/30 55/33 63/39 72/47 79/56 86/64 89/68 88/67 81/60 72/49 62/39 53/32! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Fayetteville 54/33 59/35 66/42 75/50 82/59 89/68 91/72 90/70 84/64 75/52 67/43 56/35! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| GreensboroWEB
, Climate Data - NWS Raleigh North Carolina
, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
, 6 September 2019, 48/30
53/32 61/39 70/47 78/56 85/65 88/69 86/68 80/61 70/49 61/40 51/32! style="background:#f8f3ca; color:#000; height:16px;"| Raleigh 51/31 55/34 63/40 72/48 80/57 87/66 90/70 88/69 82/62 73/50 64/41 54/33! style="background:#c5dfe1; color:#000; height:16px;"| WilmingtonWEB
, NowData – NOAA Online Weather Data
, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
, February 26, 2012, 56/36
60/38 66/44 74/52 81/60 87/69 90/73 88/71 84/66 76/55 68/45 59/38{{Weather box/concise_F| location=North Carolina (1980–2010)|
"Climatological Information for North Carolina",, 2003. Web: weblink. 53.7
71 85.2 86.8 71.6 52.5 30.9 45.2 63 65.8 47.2 30.8 3.5 3.5 4.3 4.7 3.3 3.5 1.4 0.1 0 0 0 0.8 }}


{{US Census population|1790= 393751|1800= 478103|1810= 556526|1820= 638829|1830= 737987|1840= 753419|1850= 869039|1860= 992622|1870= 1071361|1880= 1399750|1890= 1617949|1900= 1893810|1910= 2206287|1920= 2559123|1930= 3170276|1940= 3571623|1950= 4061929|1960= 4556155|1970= 5082059|1980= 5881766|1990= 6628637|2000= 8049313|2010= 9535483|estimate= 10383620|estyear= 2018|align-fn=centerTITLE=RESIDENT POPULATION DATA – 2010 CENSUS ACCESSDATE=DECEMBER 22, 2012 ARCHIVEURL=HTTPS://WEB.ARCHIVE.ORG/WEB/20121220045933/HTTP://2010.CENSUS.GOV/2010CENSUS/DATA/APPORTIONMENT-POP-TEXT.PHP DF=MDY-ALL, 2018 estimateHTTPS://WWW.CENSUS.GOV/QUICKFACTS/FACT/TABLE/NC,US/PST045218>TITLE=QUICKFACTS NORTH CAROLINA; UNITED STATESWEBSITE=2018 POPULATION ESTIMATESUNITED STATES CENSUS BUREAU, POPULATION DIVISION>DATE=JANUARY 16, 2019, January 16, 2019, }}The United States Census Bureau estimates that the population of North Carolina was 10,383,620 on July 1, 2018, a 8.89% increase since the 2010 Census. Of the people residing in North Carolina, 58.5% were born in North Carolina, 33.1% were born in another US state, 1.0% were born in Puerto Rico, U.S. Island areas, or born abroad to American parent(s), and 7.4% were born in another country.WEB,weblink American FactFinder – Results, Data Access and Dissemination Systems (DADS),, dead,weblink" title="">weblink August 15, 2014, mdy-all, May 29, 2012,


Demographics of North Carolina covers the varieties of ethnic groups that reside in North Carolina, along with the relevant trends.The state's racial composition in the 2010 Census:WEB, 2010 Census,weblink US Census, August 21, 2011, {| class="wikitable sortable collapsible"|+ North Carolina Racial Breakdown of Population! Racial composition !! 1990WEB,weblink Historical Census Statistics on Population Totals By Race, 1790 to 1990, and By Hispanic Origin, 1970 to 1990, For The United States, Regions, Divisions, and States, Population Division, Laura K. Yax, January 5, 2015, dead,weblink" title="">weblink July 25, 2008, mdy-all, !! 2000Population of North Carolina: Census 2010 and 2000 Interactive Map, Demographics, Statistics, Quick Facts{{dead link|date=March 2017 |bot=Beta7 |fix-attempted=yes }}!! 2010WEB,weblink 2010 Census Data, Center for New Media and Promotions(C2PO), January 5, 2015, White American>White 75.6% 72.1% 68.5%African American>Black 22.0% 21.6% 21.4%Asian American>Asian 0.8% 1.4% 2.2%Native Americans in the United States>Native 1.2% 1.2% 1.3%Native Hawaiian andPacific Islander>other Pacific Islander – 0.1% 0.1%Race and ethnicity in the United States Census>Other race 0.5% 2.3% 4.3%Multiracial American>Two or more races – 1.3% 2.3%


As of 2010, 89.66% (7,750,904) of North Carolina residents age 5 and older spoke English at home as a primary language, while 6.93% (598,756) spoke Spanish, 0.32% (27,310) French, 0.27% (23,204) German, and Chinese (which includes Mandarin) was spoken as a main language by 0.27% (23,072) of the population over the age of five. In total, 10.34% (893,735) of North Carolina's population age 5 and older spoke a mother language other than English.WEB,weblink North Carolina, Modern Language Association, August 16, 2013, North Carolina is also home to a spectrum of different dialects of Southern American English and Appalachian English.{| class="wikitable sortable" style="margin-left:1em; float:center"|+ Top 15 Non-English Languages Spoken in North Carolina! Language !! Percentage of population(as of 2010)| 6.93%| 0.32%| 0.27%Standard Chinese>Mandarin) 0.27%| 0.24%| 0.17%| 0.16%Tagalog language>Tagalog 0.13%Hindi language>Hindi 0.12%Gujarati language>Gujarati, Russian, and Hmong language (tied) >| 0.11%| 0.08%Cherokee language>Cherokee 0.01%WEB, Cherokee, Ethnologue, April 11, 2014,weblink


{{bar boxPUBLISHER=, left1=Religion float=right|bars ={{bar percent|Protestant|purple|76}}{{bar percent 3||Evangelical|Indigo|35|Mainline|DarkOrchid|19||Historically Black|Violet|12}}{{bar percent|None|black|10}}{{bar percent|Catholic|dodgerblue|9}}{{bar percent|Mormon|blue|1}}{{bar percent|Eastern Orthodox|pink|1}}{{bar percent|Jehovah's Witness|yellow|1}}{{bar percent|Jewish|green|1}}{{bar percent|Other faith|grey|1}}}}North Carolina residents, like those of other Southern states, since the colonial era have historically been overwhelmingly Protestant, first Anglican, then Baptist and Methodist. Before the Civil War, the Baptists split into regional associations of the North and South, over the issue of slavery.By the late 19th century, the largest Protestant denomination in North Carolina was the Baptist, when both whites and blacks were considered, but the latter people had set up their own organizations. After emancipation, black Baptists quickly set up their own independent congregations in North Carolina and other states of the South, as they wanted to be free of white supervision.JOURNAL,weblink The Evolution of the Negro Baptist Church, Brooks, Walter Henderson (1851–1945), Journal of Negro History, 7, 1, January 1922, 11–22, 19 May 2019, Wilson Fallin Jr., Uplifting the People: Three Centuries of Black Baptists in Alabama (2007) pp. 52–53 Black Baptists developed their own state and national associations, such as the National Baptist Convention USA, Inc..Albert J. Raboteau, Slave Religion: The "Invisible Institution" in the Antebellum South, New York: Oxford University Press, 1979While the Baptists in total (counting both blacks and whites) have maintained the majority in this part of the country (known as the Bible Belt), a wide variety of faiths are practiced by other residents in the state, including Judaism, Islam, Baha'i, Buddhism, and Hinduism. As of 2010 the Southern Baptist Convention was the biggest denomination, with 4,241 churches and 1,513,000 members; the second largest was the United Methodist Church, with 660,000 members and 1,923 churches. The third was the Roman Catholic Church, with 428,000 members in 190 congregations. The fourth greatest was the Presbyterian Church (USA), with 186,000 members and 710 congregations; this denomination was brought by Scots-Irish immigrants who settled the backcountry in the colonial era.WEB, North Carolina: Religious Traditions, 2010, June 10, 2014, State Membership Report,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink December 17, 2013, dead, Association of Religious Data Archives, mdy-all, The state also has a special history with the Moravian Church, as settlers of this faith (largely of German origin) settled in the Winston-Salem area in the 18th and 19th centuries. Presbyterians, historically Scots-Irish, have had a strong presence in Charlotte and in Scotland County.Currently, the rapid influx of northerners and immigrants from Latin America is steadily increasing ethnic and religious diversity: the number of Roman Catholics and Jews in the state has increased, as well as general religious diversity. The second-largest Protestant denomination in North Carolina after Baptist traditions is Methodism, which is strong in the northern Piedmont, especially in populous Guilford County. There are also a substantial number of Quakers in Guilford County and northeastern North Carolina. Many universities and colleges in the state have been founded on religious traditions, and some currently maintain that affiliation, including:WEB, Robin, Whitsell, Religiously-Affiliated North Carolina Colleges, February 26, 2008, June 10, 2014, Carolina Parent,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink October 29, 2013, dead, mdy-all, {{colbegin}} {{colend}}The state also has several major seminaries, including the Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, and the Hood Theological Seminary (AME Zion) in Salisbury.

Most populous counties

{{See also|List of counties in North Carolina}}In 2016, the US Census Bureau released 2015 population estimate counts for North Carolina's counties. Mecklenburg County has the largest population, while Wake County has the second largest population in North Carolina.WEB,weblinkweblink" title="">weblink dead, June 6, 2016, Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Counties: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015 – U.S Census Bureau,, May 19, 2016,

Major cities

{{See also|List of municipalities in North Carolina}}In 2017, the US Census Bureau released 2016 population estimate counts for North Carolina's cities with populations above 70,000. Charlotte has the largest population, while Raleigh has the highest population density of North Carolina's largest cities.WEB,weblinkweblink dead, October 19, 2016, Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2015 – U.S Census Bureau,, May 19, 2016, {{Largest cities| name = Largest cities| country = North CarolinaDATE=JULY 1, 2017ACCESSDATE=JANUARY 16, 2019, | list_by_pop =| class = nav| div_name =| div_link = Counties of North Carolina{{!}}County| city_1 = Charlotte, North Carolina{{!}}Charlotte| div_1 = Mecklenburg County, North Carolina{{!}}Mecklenburg| pop_1 = 859,035| img_1 = Skyline_seen_from_Marshall_Park,_Charlotte,_NC.jpg| city_2 = Raleigh, North Carolina{{!}}Raleigh| div_2 = Wake County, North Carolina{{!}}Wake| pop_2 = 464,758| img_2 = Raleigh_downtown_skyline.jpg| city_3 = Greensboro, North Carolina{{!}}Greensboro| div_3 = Guilford County, North Carolina{{!}}Guilford| pop_3 = 290,222| img_3 = Greensboro_Skyline.jpg| city_4 = Durham, North Carolina{{!}}Durham| div_4 = Durham County, North Carolina{{!}}Durham| pop_4 = 267,743| img_4 = Durham NC downtown skyline.jpg| city_5 = Winston-Salem, North Carolina{{!}}Winston-Salem| div_5 = Forsyth County, North Carolina{{!}}Forsyth| pop_5 = 244,605| img_5 =| city_6 = Fayetteville, North Carolina{{!}}Fayetteville| div_6 = Cumberland County, North Carolina{{!}}Cumberland| pop_6 = 209,889| img_6 =| city_7 = Cary, North Carolina{{!}}Cary| div_7 = Wake County, North Carolina{{!}}Wake| pop_7 = 165,904| img_7 =| city_8 = Wilmington, North Carolina{{!}}Wilmington| div_8 = New Hanover County, North Carolina{{!}}New Hanover| pop_8 = 119,045| img_8 =| city_9 = High Point, North Carolina{{!}}High Point| div_9 = Guilford County, North Carolina{{!}}Guilford| pop_9 = 111,513| img_9 =| city_10 = Greenville, North Carolina{{!}}Greenville| div_10 = Pitt County, North Carolina{{!}}Pitt| pop_10 = 92,156| img_10 =}}

Largest combined statistical areas

File:Charlotte Skyline 2011 - Ricky W.jpg|thumb|Charlotte skyline]]North Carolina has three major Combined Statistical Areas with populations of more than 1.6 million (U.S. Census Bureau 2017 estimates):WEB,weblink Population Estimates 2017 Combined Statistical Areas: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2017, U.S. Census Bureau, January 16, 2019, January 16, 2019,
  • Metrolina: Charlotte–Concord–Gastonia, North Carolina–South Carolina – population 2,684,121
  • The Research Triangle: Raleigh–Durham–Chapel Hill, North Carolina – population 2,199,459
  • The Piedmont Triad: Greensboro–Winston-Salem–High Point, North Carolina – population 1,663,532


{{See also|North Carolina locations by per capita income}}North Carolina's 2018 total gross state product was $496 billion.WEB,weblink Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the federal state of North Carolina from 1997 to 2018 (in billion U.S. dollars), Statista, 9 September 2019, Based on American Community Survey 2010-2014 data, North Carolina's median household income was $46,693. It ranked forty-first out of fifty states plus the District of Columbia for median household income. North Carolina had the fourteenth highest poverty rate in the nation at 17.6%. 13% of families were below the poverty line.WEB,weblink U.S. Population in Poverty Percentage State Rank Based on ACS 2010-2014 data,, July 14, 2017, The state has a very diverse economy because of its great availability of hydroelectric power,{{citation needed|date=September 2016}} its pleasant climate, and its wide variety of soils. The state ranks third among the South Atlantic states in population, but leads the region in industry{{citation needed|date=September 2016}} and agriculture.{{citation needed|date=September 2016}} North Carolina leads the nation in the production of tobacco,WEB,weblink Crop Profile for Tobacco in North Carolina, December 2015, Regional IPM Centers, January 17, 2019, textiles, and furniture.{{citation needed|date=September 2016}} Charlotte, the state's largest city, is a major textile and trade center. According to a Forbes article written in 2013 Employment in the "Old North State" has gained many different industry sectors. Science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) industries in the area surrounding North Carolina's capital have grown 17.9 percent since 2001, placing Raleigh-Cary at No. 5 among the 51 largest metro areas in the country where technology is booming.{{citation needed|date=June 2018}} In 2010, North Carolina's total gross state product was $424.9 billion,WEB, GDP by State,weblink Greyhill Advisors, September 7, 2011, while the state debt in November 2012, according to one source, totalled US$2.4bn,WEB,weblink Local & North Carolina state news from Raleigh, NC –, January 5, 2015, dead,weblink" title="">weblink March 8, 2014, mdy-all, while according to another, was in 2012 US$57.8bn.WEB,weblink The 19th worst state, Truth in Accounting, In 2011, the civilian labor force was at around 4.5 million with employment near 4.1 million.North Carolina is the leading U.S. state in production of flue-cured tobacco and sweet potatoes, and comes second in the farming of pigs and hogs, trout, and turkeys.WEB,weblink About NC, August 7, 2016, State of North Carolina, WEB,weblink North Carolina Agriculture, State Library of North Carolina, August 7, 2016, dead,weblink" title="">weblink August 11, 2016, mdy-all, In the three most recent USDA surveys (2002, 2007, 2012), North Carolina also ranked second in the production of Christmas trees.WEB,weblink States by Total Trees Harvested, National Christmas Tree Association, August 7, 2016, WEB,weblink About the Census, United States Department of Agriculture, August 7, 2016, North Carolina has 15 metropolitan areas,Economy at a Glance. For North Carolina. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. 2011. and in 2010 was chosen as the third-best state for business by Forbes Magazine, and the second-best state by Chief Executive Officer Magazine.WEB, Site Selection Rankings,weblink Greyhill Advisors, October 17, 2011, Since 2000, there has been a clear division in the economic growth of North Carolina's urban and rural areas. While North Carolina's urban areas have enjoyed a prosperous economy with steady job growth, low unemployment, and rising wages, many of the state's rural counties have suffered from job loss, rising levels of poverty, and population loss as their manufacturing base has declined. According to one estimate, one-half of North Carolina's 100 counties have lost population since 2010, primarily due to the poor economy in many of North Carolina's rural areas. However, the population of the state's urban areas is steadily increasing.NEWS,weblink NC economy a mixed bag, Raleigh News & Observer, October 8, 2016, Doran, Will, Raynor, David, )


(File:1981 North Carolina license plate Balloonduck.png|thumb|left|A North Carolina license plate)Transportation systems in North Carolina consist of air, water, road, rail, and public transportation including intercity rail via Amtrak and light rail in Charlotte. North Carolina has the second-largest state highway system in the country as well as the largest ferry system on the east coast.WEB,weblink NC Department of Transportation Article: North Carolina's Future Rides on Us, NC Department of Transportation, September 22, 2012, North Carolina's airports serve destinations throughout the United States and international destinations in Canada, Europe, Central America, and the Caribbean. In 2013 Charlotte Douglas International Airport ranked as the 23rd busiest airport in the world.World's busiest airports by passenger traffic#2013 statisticsNorth Carolina has a growing passenger rail system with Amtrak serving most major cities. Charlotte is also home to North Carolina's only light rail system known as the Lynx.

Government and politics

{| class="wikitable" style="float:right; margin:1em; font-size:95%;"Gubernatorial election resultsWEB,weblink General Election Results – North Carolina, United States Election Atlas, November 18, 2016, Leip, David, style="background:lightgrey;"! Year ! Democratic! Republican1952 67.5% 796,306 32.5% 383,329 1956 67.0% 760,480 33.1% 375,379 1960 54.5% 735,248 45.5% 613,975 1964 56.6% 790,343 43.4% 606,165 1968 52.7% 821,233 47.3% 737,075 1972 48.5% 729,104 51.0% 767,470 1976 65.0% 1,081,293 33.9% 564,102 1980 61.9% 1,143,145 37.4% 691,449 1984 45.4% 1,011,209 54.3% 1,208,167 1988 43.9% 957,687 56.1% 1,222,338 1992 52.7% 1,368,246 43.2% 1,121,955 1996 56.0% 1,436,638 42.8% 1,097,053 2000 52.0% 1,530,324 46.3% 1,360,960 2004 55.6% 1,939,154 42.9% 1,495,021 2008 50.3% 2,146,189 46.9% 2,001,168 2012 43.2% 1,931,580 54.6% 2,440,707 2016 49.0% 2,309,157 48.8% 2,298,880 {| class="wikitable" style="float:right; margin:1em; font-size:95%;"Presidential election results style="background:lightgrey;"! Year! Democratic! Republican 1952 53.9% 652,803 46.1% 558,107 1956 50.7% 590,530 49.3% 575,062 1960 52.1% 713,136 47.9% 655,420 1964 56.2% 800,139 43.9% 624,844 1968 29.2% 464,113 39.5% 627,192 1972 28.9% 438,705 69.5% 1,054,889 1976 55.3% 927,365 44.2% 741,960 1980 47.2% 875,635 49.3% 915,018 1984 37.9% 824,287 61.9% 1,346,481 1988 41.7% 890,167 58.0% 1,237,258 1992 42.7% 1,114,042 43.4% 1,134,661 1996 44.0% 1,107,849 48.7% 1,225,938 2000 43.2% 1,257,692 56.0% 1,631,163 2004 43.6% 1,525,849 56.0% 1,961,166 2008 49.7% 2,142,651 49.4% 2,128,474 2012 48.4% 2,178,391 50.4% 2,270,395 2016 46.2% 2,189,316 49.8% 2,362,631File:NC Legislature.JPG|thumb|left|North Carolina State Legislative BuildingNorth Carolina State Legislative BuildingThe government of North Carolina is divided into three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. These consist of the Council of State (led by the Governor), the bicameral legislature (called the General Assembly), and the state court system (headed by the North Carolina Supreme Court). The state constitution delineates the structure and function of the state government. North Carolina has 13 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives and two seats in the U.S. Senate.North Carolina's party loyalties have undergone a series of important shifts in the last few years: While the 2010 midterms saw Tar Heel voters elect a bicameral Republican majority legislature for the first time in over a century, North Carolina has also become a Southern swing state in presidential races. Since Southern Democrat Jimmy Carter's comfortable victory in the state in 1976, the state had consistently leaned Republican in presidential elections until Democrat Barack Obama narrowly won the state in 2008. In the 1990s, Democrat Bill Clinton came within a point of winning the state in 1992 and also only narrowly lost the state in 1996. In the early 2000s, Republican George W. Bush easily won the state by over 12 points.By 2008, demographic shifts, population growth, and increased liberalization in densely populated areas such as the Research Triangle, Charlotte, Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Fayetteville, and Asheville, propelled Barack Obama to victory in North Carolina, the first Democrat to win the state since 1976. In 2012, North Carolina was again considered a competitive swing state, with the Democrats even holding their 2012 Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. However, Republican Mitt Romney ultimately eked out a 2-point win in North Carolina, the only 2012 swing state that Obama lost, and one of only two states (along with Indiana) to flip from Obama in 2008 to the GOP in 2012.In 2012, the state elected a Republican Governor (Pat McCrory) and Lieutenant Governor (Dan Forest) for the first time in more than two decades, while also giving the Republicans veto-proof majorities in both the State House of Representatives and the State Senate.{| class=wikitable style="float:right; margin-left:1em"! colspan = 6 | North Carolina registered voters {{as of|2019|May|22|lc=y|df=US}}WEB,weblink Voter Registration Statistics, ! colspan = 2 | Party! Number of Voters! Percentage{{party color|Democratic Party (United States)}}Colorado Democratic Party>Democratic 2,470,114 37.12%{{party color|Independent Party (United States)}}Independent politician (United States)>Unaffiliated 2,139,585 32.15%{{party color|Republican Party (United States)}}Colorado Republican Party>Republican 2,003,702 30.11%{{party color|Libertarian Party (United States)}}Libertarian Party of Colorado>Libertarian 37,407 0.56%{{party color|Green Party (United States)}}Green Party of Colorado>Green 1,439 0.02%{{party color|Constitution Party (United States)}}American Constitution Party (Colorado)>American Constitution 1,691 0.02%! colspan = 2 | Total! style="text-align:center;"| 6,653,938! style="text-align:center;"| 100%
Because of gerrymandering in redistricting after the 2010 census, Democrats have been underrepresented in the state and Congressional delegations since 2012, although they have sometimes represented more than half the state's population.WEB,weblink Stohr, Greg, McCartney, Allison, The Supreme Court Has Never Struck Down a Partisan Voter Map. Will North Carolina’s Be the First?, Bloomberg, 22 March 2019, 19 May 2019, Several U.S. House of Representatives seats flipped control in 2012, with the Republicans holding nine seats to the Democrats' four. In the 2014 mid-term elections, Republican David Rouzer won the state's seventh congressional district seat, increasing the congressional delegation party split to 10-3 in favor of the GOP.The state was sued for racial gerrymandering the districts, which resulted in minority voting power being diluted in some areas, resulting in this skewed representation. The federal court ordered redistricting in 2015. The Republican-dominated legislature intended to give their party as much advantage as possible.“I propose that we draw the maps to give a partisan advantage to 10 Republicans and three Democrats because I do not believe it’s possible to draw a map with 11 Republicans and two Democrats,” David Lewis, a Republican state representative who led the redistricting effort, said at the time."North Carolina Republicans won 10 of the 13 seats in 2016, when Democrats got 47 percent of the statewide vote. In 2018 Republicans took nine, with one seat undecided, even though Democrats got 48 percent of the overall vote. (Excluding one district where a Republican ran unopposed, Democrats’ share in 2018 was 51 percent.)"(The undecided election in North Carolina's 9th congressional district is because the bipartisan State Election Board refused in February 2019 to certify the results, after an investigation found evidence of widespread ballot fraud committed by Republican operatives.)WEB,weblink Mark Harris calls for new election in 9th district, newsobserver, en, 2019-02-21, Two suits challenging the state congressional district map were led by "two dozen voters, the state Democratic Party, the state chapter of the League of Women Voters, and the interest group Common Cause". They contend that the redistricting resulted in deliberate under-representation of a substantial portion of voters. This case reached the United States Supreme Court in March 2019, which also heard a related partisan gerrymandering case from Maryland.


Primary and secondary education

{{See also|List of school districts in North Carolina|List of high schools in North Carolina}}File:Kituwah Academy.png|thumb|right|A lesson at New Kituwah Academy on the Qualla Boundary in North Carolina. This bilingual language immersion school, operated by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, teaches the same curriculum as other state primary schoolsprimary schoolsElementary and secondary public schools are overseen by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. The North Carolina Superintendent of Public Instruction is the secretary of the North Carolina State Board of Education, but the board, rather than the superintendent, holds most of the legal authority for making public education policy. In 2009, the board's chairman also became the "chief executive officer" for the state's school system.WEB,weblink North Carolina Public Schools,, January 31, 2012, North Carolina has 115 public school systems, each of which is overseen by a local school board.WEB,weblink NC Public School Facts,, July 24, 2011, WEB,weblink K-12 Standards, Curriculum, and Instruction, North Carolina State Board of Education, August 7, 2016, A county may have one or more systems within it. The largest school systems in North Carolina are the Wake County Public School System, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, Guilford County Schools, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools, and Cumberland County Schools.North Carolina School District Demographics. Retrieved July 12, 2013. In total there are 2,425 public schools in the state, including 99 charter schools. North Carolina Schools were segregated until the Brown v. Board of Education trial and the release of the Pearsall Plan.

Colleges and universities

{{further|List of colleges and universities in North Carolina|List of universities in North Carolina by enrollment}}In 1795, North Carolina opened the first public university in the United States—the University of North Carolina (now named the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill). More than 200 years later, the University of North Carolina system encompasses 17 public universities including North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, North Carolina Central University, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, East Carolina University, Western Carolina University, Winston-Salem State University, the University of North Carolina at Asheville, the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke, UNC Wilmington, Elizabeth City State University, Appalachian State University, Fayetteville State University, and UNC School of the Arts, and .WEB, Our 17 Institutions,weblink January 5, 2012, The University of North Carolina, dead,weblink" title="">weblink January 7, 2012, Along with its public universities, North Carolina has 58 public community colleges in its community college system. The largest university in North Carolina is currently North Carolina State University, with more than 34,000 students.WEB, About NC State:Discovery begins at NC State,weblink January 5, 2012, NC State University, {{multiple image| align = center| direction = horizontal| header =| header_align = left/right/center| header_background =| footer =| footer_align = left/right/center| footer_background =| width =| image1 = 2008-07-11 UNC-CH Old Well in the sun.jpg| width1 = 145| caption1 = Old Well at UNC-Chapel Hill| alt1 =thumb|right| width2 = 159| caption2 = Duke Chapel at Duke University| alt2 =| image3 = NCSU Belltower.png| width3 = 99| caption3 = Memorial Bell Tower at NC State| alt3| image4 = wait.chapel.png| width4 = 207| caption4 = Wait Chapel at Wake Forest University| alt4}}{{multiple image| align = center| direction = horizontal| header =| header_align = left/right/center| header_background =| footer =| footer_align = left/right/center| footer_background =| width =| image5 = Joyner Library.jpg| width5 = 159| caption5 = The Joyner Library clock tower at East Carolina University| alt5 =| image6 = UNCCNewQuad.jpg| width6 = 139University of North Carolina at Charlotte>UNC Charlotte| alt6 =}}North Carolina is also home to many well-known private colleges and universities, including Duke University, Wake Forest University, Pfeiffer University, Lees-McRae College, Davidson College, Barton College, North Carolina Wesleyan College, Elon University, Guilford College, Livingstone College, Salem College, Shaw University (the first historically black college or university in the South), Laurel University, Meredith College, Methodist University, Belmont Abbey College (the only Catholic college in the Carolinas), Campbell University, University of Mount Olive, Montreat College, High Point University, Lenoir-Rhyne University (the only Lutheran university in North Carolina) and Wingate University.{{wide image|Tree Map of Universities in North Carolina.png|1100px|Tree map depicting post-secondary education institutions in North Carolina. Each is sized by its relative share of degrees awarded. The colors noted in the key below refer to the type of institution. From left to right, these are 1) Public, 4+ year, 2) Public, 2 year 3) Private, not-for-profit 4+ year 4) Private, for-profit 4+ year, 5) Private, for-profit, 2 year 6) Private, for-profit,

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