Hickory, North Carolina facts for kids

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Hickory, North Carolina
City
City of Hickory
Union Square, downtown Hickory
Union Square, downtown Hickory
Motto: "Life. Well crafted."
Location in the U.S. state of North Carolina
Location in the U.S. state of North Carolina
Country United States
State North Carolina
Counties Catawba
Incorporated 1870
Area
 • City 29.8 sq mi (77.2 km2)
 • Land 29.7 sq mi (76.9 km2)
 • Water 0.08 sq mi (0.2 km2)
Elevation 910 ft (362 m)
Population (2010)
 • City 40,010
 • Density 1,347/sq mi (520.0/km2)
 • Urban 187,808
 • Metro 365,497
Time zone EST (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 28601-28603
Area code(s) 828
FIPS code 37-31060
GNIS feature ID 0986686
Website www.hickorync.gov

Hickory is a city located primarily in Catawba County, North Carolina, United States, with parts in adjoining Burke and Caldwell counties. The city's population at the 2010 census was 40,010, with an estimated population in 2013 of 40,361. Hickory is the principal city in the Hickory–Lenoir–Morganton MSA, in which the population at the 2010 census was 365,497 and is also included as part of the Charlotte–Concord Combined Statistical Area.

History

In the 1850s, under a huge hickory tree, Henry Robinson built a tavern of logs. The city of "Hickory Tavern" co-founded by "Dolph" Shuford, was established in 1863, and the name was eventually changed to the city of Hickory in 1873.

The first train operated in the city of "Hickory Tavern" in 1859. The first lot was sold to Henry Link for $45.00 in 1858. His house is now known as "The 1859 Cafe," a restaurant (closed in 2011). The community of Hickory was the first for many things in North Carolina, including the council-manager form of government it adopted in 1913. Hickory was also one of the first towns to install electric lights in 1888 and a complete sewage system in 1904.

In 1868, Dr. Jeremiah Ingold, pastor of the German Reformed Grace Charge, established Hickory's first school, the Free Academy.

In 1891, Lenoir–Rhyne University (then Highland Academy) was founded by four Lutheran pastors with 12 initial students.

Hickory is home to one of the oldest furniture manufacturers in the United States that is still located and operated on the original site. Hickory White, formerly known as Hickory Manufacturing Company, was built in 1902 and has been in continuous operation ever since. During World War II, the factory made ammunition boxes for the U.S. military instead of furniture.

Hickory was known in the years after World War II for the "Miracle of Hickory". In 1944 the area around Hickory (the Catawba Valley) became the center of one of the worst outbreaks of polio ever recorded. Residents who were then children recall summers of not being allowed to play outside or visit friends for fear of contracting the disease. Since local facilities were inadequate to treat the victims, the citizens of Hickory and the March of Dimes decided to build a hospital to care for the children of the region. From the time the decision was made until equipment, doctors, and patients were in a new facility, took less than 54 hours. Several more buildings were quickly added. A Red Cross official on the scene praised the project "as the most outstanding example of cooperative effort he has ever seen."

The Claremont High School Historic District, Elliott–Carnegie Library, First Presbyterian Church, Dr. Glenn R. Frye House, Clement Geitner House, Lee & Helen George House, Harris Arcade, Hickory Municipal Building, Hickory Southwest Downtown Historic District, Highland School, Hollar Hosiery Mills-Knit Sox Knitting Mills, Houck's Chapel, Kenworth Historic District, John A. Lentz House, Lyerly Full Fashioned Mill, John Alfred Moretz House, Oakwood Historic District, Piedmont Wagon Company, Propst House, Ridgeview Public Library, Shuford House, Weidner Rock House, Whisnant Hosiery Mills, and Yoder's Mills Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

City services

Fire department

The Hickory Fire Department provides fire suppression, emergency medical services, public education, hazardous materials (HAZMAT) operations, and fire prevention and inspection with 137 full-time personnel. Seven fire stations are strategically located throughout Hickory to provide a reasonable response time to emergencies.

Law enforcement

The Hickory Police Department is a full-service municipal police agency with 152 full-time officers. This group of professionals provides law enforcement and community services to the citizens of Hickory.

The Hickory Public Works Department provides water, street construction, traffic, maintenance and repair, stormwater management, solid waste and recycling, water treatment, parks and recreation, engineering and fleet maintenance services to the residents of Hickory.

Emergency medical services

Catawba County EMS provides Advanced Life Support transport services throughout Catawba County, including in the City of Hickory. Ambulances stationed at the Hickory, St. Stephens, and Mountain View bases are responsible for covering the city. To reduce wait time for services, the Hickory Fire Department will respond and provide Basic Life Support, until the arrival of an ambulance. The Hickory Rescue Squad can provide transport services, if Catawba County units are unavailable.

Transportation

Air

The county's primary commercial and general aviation airport is Hickory Regional Airport.

Mass transit

Greenway Transportation serves Hickory, as well as Conover and Newton. This public transit offers fixed bus routes and paratransit services.

Major highways

Interstate 40 traverses the City along with other major roads including US 70, US 321, and NC 127.

Geography and climate

Hickory is located in western Catawba County at 35°44′16″N 81°19′42″W / 35.73778°N 81.32833°W / 35.73778; -81.32833 (35.737682, −81.328372), and extends westward into Burke County and Caldwell County. Interstate 40 passes through the southern part of the city, leading east 68 miles (109 km) to Winston-Salem and west 75 miles (121 km) to Asheville. U.S. Route 70 (Conover Boulevard) is an older east-west route through the city. U.S. Route 321 passes through the western part of the city, leading northwest 43 miles (69 km) to Boone and south 36 miles (58 km) to Gastonia.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.8 square miles (77.2 km2), of which 29.7 square miles (76.9 km2) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.2 km2), or 0.31%, is water.

Climate data for Hickory, North Carolina (Hickory Regional Airport), 1981–2010 normals
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °F (°C) 49.3
(9.61)
53.3
(11.83)
61.2
(16.22)
70.2
(21.22)
77.6
(25.33)
85.0
(29.44)
87.8
(31)
86.3
(30.17)
80.1
(26.72)
70.6
(21.44)
61.2
(16.22)
51.2
(10.67)
69.48
(20.824)
Average low °F (°C) 29.6
(-1.33)
32.5
(0.28)
39.0
(3.89)
47.1
(8.39)
55.4
(13)
64.3
(17.94)
67.9
(19.94)
67.0
(19.44)
60.1
(15.61)
48.5
(9.17)
39.5
(4.17)
31.7
(-0.17)
48.55
(9.194)
Precipitation inches (mm) 3.69
(93.7)
3.64
(92.5)
4.29
(109)
3.69
(93.7)
3.66
(93)
4.10
(104.1)
4.44
(112.8)
4.08
(103.6)
3.60
(91.4)
3.51
(89.2)
3.52
(89.4)
3.74
(95)
45.96
(1,167.4)
Snowfall inches (cm) 3.7
(9.4)
1.4
(3.6)
.6
(1.5)
.2
(0.5)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
0
(0)
.3
(0.8)
6.3
(16)
Avg. precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in) 8.6 8.8 9.9 9.2 10.9 10.7 11.6 9.7 7.9 7.4 8.5 8.9 112.1
Avg. snowy days (≥ 0.1 in) .8 .7 .1 .1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .2 1.9
Source: NOAA

Metropolitan area

Hickory is the largest city within the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area). The MSA includes Catawba County, Burke County, Caldwell County, and Alexander County, with a combined population – as of the 2010 Census – of 365,497.

Apart from Hickory, the MSA includes Lenoir, Morganton, Conover, and Newton, along with a number of smaller incorporated towns: Sawmills, Granite Falls, Valdese, Long View, Gamewell, Hudson, Maiden, Cajah's Mountain, Hildebran, and Taylorsville.

Several sizable unincorporated rural and suburban communities are also located nearby: Drexel, Connelly Springs, Glen Alpine, Claremont, Rutherford College, Catawba, Cedar Rock, North Carolina, and Brookford.

Awards and recognition

Hickory has been named an "All-America City" three times. The All-America City Award is given annually to only ten cities in the United States. It is an award that represents a community's ability to work together and achieve critical local issues. Hickory won this award in 2007, as well as 1967 and 1987.

According to the official City of Hickory website, the Hickory Metro area has been named the 10th best place to live and raise a family in the United States by Reader's Digest and the MSA (Hickory, Lenoir, Morganton) has been named 3rd best MSA in the country for business cost by Forbes.

In 2014, Smart Growth America identified Hickory as being country’s most sprawling metro area.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1890 2,023
1900 2,535 25.3%
1910 3,716 46.6%
1920 5,076 36.6%
1930 7,363 45.1%
1940 13,487 83.2%
1950 14,755 9.4%
1960 19,328 31.0%
1970 20,569 6.4%
1980 20,757 0.9%
1990 28,301 36.3%
2000 37,222 31.5%
2010 40,010 7.5%
Est. 2015 40,374 0.9%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2010, there were 40,093 people, 18,719 households, and 9,952 families residing in the city. There were 18,719 housing units at an average density of 640.4 per square mile (227.9/km²). The racial composition of the city was: 74.9% White, 14.3% Black or African American, 11.4% Hispanic or Latino American, 3.2% Asian American, 0.19% Native American, 0.06% Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, 3.08% some other race, and 1.46% two or more races.

There were 18,719 households out of which 27.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.6% were married couples living together, 12.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.1% were non-families. 32.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.35 and the average family size was 2.98.

In the city, the population was spread out with 23.3% under the age of 18, 11.2% from 18 to 24, 30.7% from 25 to 44, 21.3% from 45 to 64, and 13.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 92.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.7 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $37,236, and the median income for a family was $47,522. Males had a median income of $31,486 versus $23,666 for females. The per capita income for the city was $23,263. About 8.4% of families and 11.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 14.8% of those under age 18 and 7.0% of those age 65 or over.

364,759 people live within 25 miles (40 km) of Hickory; 1.8 million people within 50 miles (80 km) of Hickory.

Highways

  • I-40
  • US 321.svg U.S. Highway 321
  • US 321.svg U.S. Highway 321 Business
  • US 70.svg U.S. Highway 70
  • NC 127.svg North Carolina Hwy 127

Lake Hickory

Lake Hickory was created on the Catawba River in 1927 with the completion of the Oxford Dam 11 miles (18 km) northeast of Hickory. The dam parallels the NC Highway 16 bridge over the Catawba River between Interstate 40 and Taylorsville. It is 122 feet (37 m) high, with an overall length of 1,200 feet (370 m). The spillway section of the dam is 550 feet (170 m) long.

Lake Hickory was named after the city of Hickory and runs along its northern edge. The lake covers almost 4,223 acres (17.09 km2) with 105 miles (169 km) of shoreline. Full pond elevation is 935 feet (285 m). Lake Hickory is a reliable source of water for the cities of Hickory and Conover and the town of Longview.

Duke Energy provides five public access areas on the lake in cooperation with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

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