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Dunn, North Carolina facts for kids

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Dunn, North Carolina
City of Dunn
Downtown Dunn
Downtown Dunn
"Where community matters"
Location of Dunn, North Carolina
Location of Dunn, North Carolina
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Harnett
 • Total 6.84 sq mi (17.73 km2)
 • Land 6.84 sq mi (17.70 km2)
 • Water 0.01 sq mi (0.02 km2)
207 ft (63 m)
 • Total 9,263
 • Estimate 
 • Density 1,421.59/sq mi (548.91/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
Area code(s) 910
FIPS code 37-18320
GNIS feature ID 1020051

Dunn is the largest city of Harnett County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 9,263 at the 2010 census, and an estimated 9,718 in 2018. It is the anchor city of the Dunn Micropolitan Area, population 114,678 (2010 census), which consists of Harnett County and is a part of the greater Raleigh–Durham–Cary Combined Statistical Area (CSA) as defined by the United States Census Bureau.


Originally called Lucknow, what would become present day Dunn was a sleepy hamlet compared to Averasborough, a much larger city on the Cape Fear River. After the Battle of Averasborough in 1865, most residents from Averasborough left for Lucknow, renamed Dunn in 1873.

The city of Dunn was incorporated on February 12, 1887, at which time was a logging town and a turpentine distilling center. The name honors Bennett Dunn, who supervised the construction of the railway line between Wilson and Fayetteville.

The Dunn Commercial Historic District, Harnett County Training School, Kenneth L. Howard House, Lebanon, Gen. William C. Lee House, John A. McKay House and Manufacturing Company, and John E. Wilson House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Dunn is located at 35°18′37″N 78°36′39″W / 35.31028°N 78.61083°W / 35.31028; -78.61083 (35.310360, -78.610836).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.2 square miles (16 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 419
1900 1,072 155.8%
1910 1,823 70.1%
1920 2,805 53.9%
1930 4,558 62.5%
1940 5,256 15.3%
1950 6,316 20.2%
1960 7,566 19.8%
1970 8,302 9.7%
1980 8,962 7.9%
1990 8,336 −7.0%
2000 9,196 10.3%
2010 9,263 0.7%
2019 (est.) 9,718 4.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
2013 Estimate

2020 census

Dunn racial composition
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 3,882 45.96%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 3,319 39.3%
Native American 76 0.9%
Asian 57 0.67%
Pacific Islander 2 0.02%
Other/Mixed 326 3.86%
Hispanic or Latino 784 9.28%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 8,446 people, 4,031 households, and 2,284 families residing in the city.


Dunn is home to four schools. Harnett Primary is for preschool through third grade; Wayne Avenue Elementary serves fourth and fifth grade studes; Dunn Middle School is for grades six through eight. Dunn's students then attend Triton High School in nearby Erwin.

Dunn is also home to private religious schools, including Dream Big Christian Academy, Calvary Christian Academy, Heritage Bible College, and Foundations Bible College and Theological Seminary.

Notable people

  • Dorothy F. Bailey, civil leader
  • Kevin Barnes, NFL cornerback
  • Renee Ellmers, congresswoman
  • Beth Finch, politician and businesswoman
  • Kenneth L. Hardison, lawyer and author
  • Oscar N. Harris, politician
  • Cal Lampley, record producer and composer
  • William C. Lee, Army general
  • David R. Lewis, former member of the North Carolina House of Representatives
  • Debbi Morgan, actress
  • Wilson Raynor, NFL long snapper
  • James Toon, gridiron football player and coach
  • Clayton White, football coach and player
  • Link Wray, musician
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