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Carthage, North Carolina
Moore County Courthouse in Carthage
Moore County Courthouse in Carthage
Location in Moore County and the state of North Carolina.
Location in Moore County and the state of North Carolina.
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Moore
 • Type council-manager
 • Total 6.68 sq mi (17.31 km2)
 • Land 6.64 sq mi (17.21 km2)
 • Water 0.04 sq mi (0.10 km2)
617 ft (188 m)
 • Total 2,635
 • Estimate 
 • Density 384.20/sq mi (148.35/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s) 910
FIPS code 37-00160
GNIS feature ID 1018757

Carthage is the county seat of Moore County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 2,635 at the 2020 Census.


Carthage is located at 35°19′46″N 79°24′31″W / 35.32944°N 79.40861°W / 35.32944; -79.40861 (35.329441, -79.408475).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 5.9 square miles (15 km2), of which, 5.8 square miles (15 km2) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) of it (0.68%) is water.


Union Presbyterian Church
Union Presbyterian Church

The town was the home of the Tyson Buggy Company, a predominant cart and buggy manufacturer in the 1800s. A common story told by residents is that after the closing of the Tyson Buggy Company, Henry Ford was interested in buying the old plant and converting it into a car assembly line. According to the legend, the owners refused to let Ford buy the plant and so he moved on to build a plant in Detroit. This story is often repeated despite a lack of evidence, and runs contrary to the established pattern of Ford (who was born and raised in Detroit) starting all of his businesses in Detroit. A few years afterwards, the Tyson Buggy plant burned down.

Another common story of folklore is that the town was originally to be the home of the University of North Carolina. In this story, however, city leaders determined that they didn't want the university built there. City leaders told the State that Carthage was on too steep of a hill for locomotives to climb and that access to the University would be limited if built there. This often-repeated story fails to take into consideration the fact that locomotives were not invented until two decades after the university had been built in Chapel Hill.

The town now has an annual event that takes place every spring called the Buggy Festival. This event is used to showcase the history of the town as well as show off music, hot rods, old tractors, old buggies made by the Tyson Buggy Company, and crafts from potteries in the surrounding areas. This event takes place in the town square around the Old Court House, considered to be a historic landmark.

The J.C. Black House, Daniel Blue House, Bruce-Dowd-Kennedy House, Carthage Historic District, Alexander Kelly House, and Moore County Courthouse are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 366
1890 485 32.5%
1900 605 24.7%
1910 863 42.6%
1920 962 11.5%
1930 1,129 17.4%
1940 1,381 22.3%
1950 1,194 −13.5%
1960 1,190 −0.3%
1970 1,034 −13.1%
1980 925 −10.5%
1990 976 5.5%
2000 1,871 91.7%
2010 2,205 17.9%
2019 (est.) 2,553 15.8%
U.S. Decennial Census

2020 census

Carthage racial composition
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 1,897 68.36%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 415 14.95%
Native American 31 1.12%
Asian 10 0.36%
Pacific Islander 1 0.04%
Other/Mixed 158 5.69%
Hispanic or Latino 263 9.48%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 2,775 people, 967 households, and 497 families residing in the town. Carthage is currently growing at a rate of 1.58% annually and its population has increased by 19.50% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 2,205 in 2010. Carthage reached its highest population of in. Spanning over 7 miles, Carthage has a population density of 397 people per square mile.

The average household income in Carthage is $59,183 with a poverty rate of 11.67%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $727 per month, and the median house value is $173,900. The median age in Carthage is 43.3 years, 37.5 years for males, and 47.5 years for females.

Notable people

  • Lucean Arthur Headen (1879–1957), African-American aviator, inventor, and entrepreneur
  • McConnell, James (2021), Artist commissioned for ten murals throughout the Town of Carthage

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Carthage (Carolina del Norte) para niños

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