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Franklin County, North Carolina facts for kids

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Franklin County
Franklin County Courthouse in Louisburg. July 1948.
Franklin County Courthouse in Louisburg. July 1948.
Official seal of Franklin County
Seal
Motto(s): 
LEGES JURAQUE VINDICAMUS
"We Defend Laws and Justice"
Map of North Carolina highlighting Franklin 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 1779
Named for Benjamin Franklin
Seat Louisburg
Largest town Wake Forest
Area
 • Total 494 sq mi (1,280 km2)
 • Land 492 sq mi (1,270 km2)
 • Water 2.8 sq mi (7 km2)  0.6%%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total 68,573
 • Density 138.81/sq mi (53.60/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 1st

Franklin County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2020 census, the population was 68,573. Its county seat is Louisburg.

Franklin County is included in the Raleigh, NC Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill, NC Combined Statistical Area, which had a 2012 estimated population of 1,998,808.

History

The county was formed in 1779 from the southern half of Bute County. It is named for Benjamin Franklin. It is a part of the Research Triangle.

County formation timeline

  • 1664 Albemarle County formed (original, extinct)
  • 1668 Albemarle County subdivided into Carteret, Berkeley, & Shaftesbury Precincts
  • 1681 Shaftesbury Precinct renamed Chowan Precinct
  • 1722 Bertie Precinct formed from Chowan Precinct
  • 1739 Bertie Precinct becomes Bertie County
  • 1741 Edgecombe County formed from Bertie County
  • 1746 Granville County formed from Edgecombe County
  • 1754 Creation of Bertie Precinct, Edgecombe County, & Granville County repealed by King George II, in Privy Council
  • 1756 Bertie, Edgecombe, & Granville re-created
  • 1764 Bute County (extinct) formed from Granville County
  • 1779 Franklin County formed from Bute County (extinct)
  • 1787 Franklin County gains land from Wake County
  • 1875 Franklin County gains land from Granville County
  • 1881 Franklin County loses land to help form Vance County

County song

The "Franklin County Song" was selected in a 1929 contest by the county historical association as the song most suitable for public occasions. The words were written by Fred U. Wolfe, an agriculture teacher at Gold Sand. Sung to the tune "Maryland, My Maryland" ("O Christmas Tree"), the song was incorporated in the Bicentennial programs of 1979. At the evening convocation of January 29, Mrs. Beth Norris announced to the audience that Wolfe (retired and residing in North, South Carolina) was aware his song was part of the program that night. (See Franklin Times, January 30, 1979.)

With loyalty we sing thy praise,
Glory to thy honored name!
Our voices loud in tribute raise,
Making truth thy pow'r proclaim.
Thy past is marked with vict'ry bold;
Thy deeds today can ne'er be told,
And heroes brave shall e'er uphold
Franklin's name forevermore.

We love thy rich and fruitful soil,
Wood, and stream, and thriving town.
We love the gift of daily toil,
Making men of true renown.
Thy church and school shall ever stand
To drive the darkness from our land—
A true and loyal, valiant band,
Sons of Franklin evermore.

A shrine of promise, pow'r and truth,
Lasting righteousness and peace,
A land of hope for toiling youth,
Yielding songs that never cease.
Let ev'ry son and daughter stay
The hand of vice that brings decay.
When duty's voice we shall obey,
Franklin's name shall live for aye.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 494 square miles (1,280 km2), of which 492 square miles (1,270 km2) is land and 2.8 square miles (7.3 km2) (0.6%) is water.

Adjacent counties

Major highways

  • I-495
  • US 1
  • US 1A
  • US 64
  • US 401
  • NC 39
  • NC 56
  • NC 58
  • NC 96
  • NC 97
  • NC 98
  • NC 561
  • NC 581

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 7,502
1800 8,529 13.7%
1810 10,166 19.2%
1820 9,741 −4.2%
1830 10,665 9.5%
1840 10,980 3.0%
1850 11,713 6.7%
1860 14,107 20.4%
1870 14,134 0.2%
1880 20,829 47.4%
1890 21,090 1.3%
1900 25,116 19.1%
1910 24,692 −1.7%
1920 26,667 8.0%
1930 29,456 10.5%
1940 30,382 3.1%
1950 31,341 3.2%
1960 28,755 −8.3%
1970 26,820 −6.7%
1980 30,055 12.1%
1990 36,414 21.2%
2000 47,260 29.8%
2010 60,619 28.3%
Est. 2021 71,703 18.3%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

2020 census

Franklin County racial composition
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 42,285 61.66%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 15,785 23.02%
Native American 259 0.38%
Asian 452 0.66%
Pacific Islander 17 0.02%
Other/Mixed 2,813 4.1%
Hispanic or Latino 6,962 10.15%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 68,573 people, 26,720 households, and 20,443 families residing in the county.

2010 census

As of the census of 2010, there were 60,619 people, 23,023 households, and 16,317 families residing in the county. The population density was 123 people per square mile (47/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 66.0% White, 26.7% Black or African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.0% Pacific Islander, 4.4% from other races, and 1.8% from two or more races. 7.9% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 23,023 households, out of which 30.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.3% were married couples living together, 13.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.1% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.04.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 27.3% under the age of 20, 5.5% from 20 to 24, 26.2% from 25 to 44, 28.5% from 45 to 64, and 12.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.1 years. For every 100 females there were 99.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.0 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $41,696, and the median income for a family was $51,353. Males had a median income of $41,025 versus $34,562 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,399. About 12.3% of families and 16.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.6% of those under age 18 and 13.7% of those age 65 or over.

Housing

There were 26,577 housing units at an average density of 54 per square mile (21/km2). 13.4% of housing units were vacant.

There were 23,023 occupied housing units in the town. 17,029 were owner-occupied units (74.0%), while 5,994 were renter-occupied (26.0%). The homeowner vacancy rate was 2.4% of total units. The rental unit vacancy rate was 7.6%.

Communities

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

Towns

Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities

Townships

  • Cedar Rock
  • Cypress Creek
  • Dunn
  • Franklinton
  • Gold Sand
  • Harris
  • Hayesville
  • Louisburg
  • Sandy Creek
  • Youngsville

Education

Franklin County Schools operates 16 schools throughout the county, ranging from pre-kindergarten through twelfth grade. They include four high schools, four middle schools and eight elementary schools.

Franklin County is home to the two-year Methodist-affiliated Louisburg College and to a satellite campus of Vance-Granville Community College.

Youngsville Academy, a college-preparatory, tuition-free Charter School, opened in July 2015.

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