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Edgecombe County, North Carolina facts for kids

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Edgecombe County
Postcard. Historic Edgecombe County Courthouse in Tarboro, North Carolina.
Postcard. Historic Edgecombe County Courthouse in Tarboro, North Carolina.
Map of North Carolina highlighting Edgecombe County
Location within the U.S. state of North Carolina
Map of the United States highlighting North Carolina
North Carolina's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  North Carolina
Founded 1741
Named for Richard Edgcumbe
Seat Tarboro
Largest city Rocky Mount
Area
 • Total 507 sq mi (1,310 km2)
 • Land 505 sq mi (1,310 km2)
 • Water 1.3 sq mi (3 km2)  0.3%
Population
 • Estimate 
(2021)
48,359
 • Density 95.8/sq mi (37.0/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 1st

Edgecombe County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2020 census, the population was 48,900. Its county seat is Tarboro. Edgecombe County is part of the Rocky Mount, North Carolina, Metropolitan Statistical Area.

History

The county was formed in 1741 from Bertie County. It was named for Richard Edgcumbe, a Member of Parliament from 1701 to 1742 and a lord of the treasury, who became 1st Baron Edgcumbe in 1742.

In 1746 part of Edgecombe County became Granville County; in 1758 another portion became Halifax County; and in 1777 yet another part became Nash County. In 1855 the formation of Wilson County from parts of Edgecombe County, Johnston County, Nash County, and Wayne County reduced Edgecombe to its present size, with a minor boundary adjustments.

Edgecombe County was historically home to the Tuscarora Indians. Although most migrated north to New York in the 18th century, descendents of the Tuscarora still live in some parts of the county.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 507 square miles (1,310 km2), of which 505 square miles (1,310 km2) is land and 1.3 square miles (3.4 km2) (0.3%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • US 13
  • US 64
  • US 258
  • US 301
  • NC 11
  • NC 33
  • NC 42
  • NC 43
  • NC 97
  • NC 111
  • NC 122
  • NC 124
  • NC 142

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 10,265
1800 10,421 1.5%
1810 12,423 19.2%
1820 13,276 6.9%
1830 14,935 12.5%
1840 15,708 5.2%
1850 17,189 9.4%
1860 17,376 1.1%
1870 22,970 32.2%
1880 26,181 14.0%
1890 24,113 −7.9%
1900 26,591 10.3%
1910 32,010 20.4%
1920 37,995 18.7%
1930 47,894 26.1%
1940 49,162 2.6%
1950 51,634 5.0%
1960 54,226 5.0%
1970 52,341 −3.5%
1980 55,988 7.0%
1990 56,558 1.0%
2000 55,606 −1.7%
2010 56,552 1.7%
Est. 2021 48,359 −14.5%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

2020 census

Edgecombe County racial composition
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 17,340 35.46%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 27,299 55.83%
Native American 128 0.26%
Asian 112 0.23%
Pacific Islander 9 0.02%
Other/Mixed 1,306 2.67%
Hispanic or Latino 2,706 5.53%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 48,900 people, 21,151 households, and 14,408 families residing in the county.

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 56,552 people living in the county. 57.4% were Black or African American, 38.8% White, 0.3% Native American, 0.2% Asian, 2.3% of some other race and 1.0% of two or more races. 3.7% were Hispanic or Latino (of any race).

Communities

Map of Edgecombe County North Carolina With Municipal and Township Labels
Map of Edgecombe County, North Carolina With Municipal and Township Labels

City

Towns

Townships

The county is divided into fourteen townships, which are both numbered and named:

  • 1 (Tarboro)
  • 2 (Lower Conetoe)
  • 3 (Upper Conetoe)
  • 4 (Deep Creek)
  • 5 (Lower Fishing Creek)
  • 6 (Upper Fishing Creek)
  • 7 (Swift Creek)
  • 8 (Sparta)
  • 9 (Otter Creek)
  • 10 (Lower Town Creek)
  • 11 (Walnut Creek)
  • 12 (Rocky Mount)
  • 13 (Cokey)
  • 14 (Upper Town Creek)

Unincorporated communities

Education

Edgecombe County Public Schools has 14 schools ranging from pre-kindergarten to thirteenth grade. These are separated into four high schools, four middle schools, five elementary schools, and 1 K-8 school. It was formed in 1993 from the merger of the old Edgecombe County Schools and Tarboro City Schools systems.

The county is home to Edgecombe Community College with campuses in Tarboro and Rocky Mount.

Notable people

  • Duncan Lamont Clinch (1787–1849) – born at Ard-Lamont in Edgecombe County, American Army officer in the First and Second Seminole Wars
  • Dorsey Pender (1834–1863) – born at Pender's Crossroads in Edgecombe County, Major General in the Confederate Army.
  • Josiah Pender (1819-1864) – cousin to Dorsey Pender, who captured Fort Macon from Union soldiers in 1861.
  • Hugh Shelton (born 1942) – four-star General and former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, appointed by President Clinton.
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