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Hertford, North Carolina
Hertford's famous 'S-Bridge,' the last S-shaped swing bridge in the world
Hertford's famous 'S-Bridge,' the last S-shaped swing bridge in the world
Location of Hertford, North Carolina
Location of Hertford, North Carolina
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Perquimans
Incorporated 1758
 • Total 2.7 sq mi (7.0 km2)
 • Land 2.7 sq mi (7.0 km2)
 • Water 0.0 sq mi (0.1 km2)
10 ft (3 m)
 • Total 2,143
 • Density 768.5/sq mi (296.7/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
27930, 27944
Area code(s) 252
FIPS code 37-30900
GNIS feature ID 1025382

Hertford is a town in Perquimans County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 2,143 as of the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Perquimans County. Hertford is located in North Carolina's Inner Banks region and is part of both the Elizabeth City Micropolitan Statistical Area and the Hampton Roads region. It is named after the county town of Hertford, England.


Hertford was originally incorporated in 1758 as the county seat for Perquimans County, first inhabited by the Yeopim Indians. County records show that the Yeopim chief Kalcacenin sold land to George Durant at the river mouth in March 1662, adjacent to land he had already sold to Samuel Pricklove. The area was settled soon afterwards, and a brick house on the site, the Newbold-White House, has been dated by dendrochronology to 1730; it is the oldest known brick structure in the state.

Through the first part of the 20th century, Hertford thrived as a lumber town, making good use of the nearby river. The bridge that spanned the river was a floating bridge, made of steel and wood. When a boat came near and wanted passage, the bridge would be unhooked from one bank and allowed to float out of the way. When the boat had passed, lines were used to haul the free end of the bridge in and reconnect it. An S-shaped swing bridge is in use today, the only one of its kind in the United States.

Hertford is the hometown of baseball pitcher Catfish Hunter. Disc jockey Wolfman Jack is buried in nearby Belvidere, and the record company he started is still located in Hertford.

The Church of the Holy Trinity, Cove Grove, Fletcher-Skinner-Nixon House and Outbuildings, Hertford Historic District, Land's End, Newbold-White House, Samuel Nixon House, Old Neck Historic District, Perquimans County Courthouse, and Sutton-Newby House are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


Hertford is located at 36°11′14″N 76°28′20″W / 36.18722°N 76.47222°W / 36.18722; -76.47222 (36.187292, -76.472345).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 2.7 square miles (7.0 km2), of which, 2.7 square miles (7.0 km2) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) of it (0.74%) is water.

Hertford is 150 miles (240 km) east of Raleigh.

Hertford is also 57 miles (92 km) south of Norfolk.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1850 369
1870 486
1880 661 36.0%
1890 733 10.9%
1900 1,382 88.5%
1910 1,841 33.2%
1920 1,704 −7.4%
1930 1,914 12.3%
1940 1,959 2.4%
1950 2,096 7.0%
1960 2,068 −1.3%
1970 2,023 −2.2%
1980 1,941 −4.1%
1990 2,105 8.4%
2000 2,070 −1.7%
2010 2,143 3.5%
Est. 2015 2,148 0.2%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2010, there were 2,143 people, 875 households, 553 families, and 1,062 housing units residing in the town. The racial makeup of the town was 48.1% African American, 46.5% white, 0.4% Asian, 0.1% Native American, 3.5% some other race, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic Latino of any race were 4.8% of the population.

There were 875 households out of which 26.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 33.9% were married couples living together, 25.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.8% were non-families. 32.8% of all households had individuals under 18 and 31% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 3.01.

In the town, the population was spread out with 27.7% with an age of 19 or younger, 13.7% in their twenties, 14.8% from 30 to 44, 25.3% from 45 to 64, and 18.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38.6 years. For every 100 females there were 79.0 males.

In 2008, the median income for a household in the town was $19,681, and the median income for a family was $24,524. Males had a median income of $24,803 versus $17,938 for females. The per capita income for the town was $13,502. About 33.6% of families and 39.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 56.6% of those under age 18 and 21.0% of those age 65 or over.


Hertford is served by U.S. Route 17 (US 17) which connects the town with Edenton to the south and Elizabeth City to the north. A business route of US 17 also exists, which connects Hertford to the neighboring town of Winfall and crosses over the Perquimans River on the famous 'S-Bridge.'

NC Highway 37 also travels through Hertford, concurrent with US 17.

Local public bus transportation is provided by the Inter-County Public Transportation Authority (ICPTA), with service to Pasquotank, Perquimans, Camden, Chowan, and Currituck counties.

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