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Hyde County, North Carolina facts for kids

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Hyde County
Lake Mattamuskeet Pump Station at the Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge near Swan Quarter.
Lake Mattamuskeet Pump Station at the Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge near Swan Quarter.
Official seal of Hyde County
Map of North Carolina highlighting Hyde 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 1739
Named for Edward Hyde
Seat Swan Quarter
Largest community Ocracoke
 • Total 1,424 sq mi (3,690 km2)
 • Land 613 sq mi (1,590 km2)
 • Water 811 sq mi (2,100 km2)  57%%
 • Estimate 
 • Density 7.4/sq mi (2.9/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 3rd

Hyde County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2020 Census, the population was 4,589, making it the second-least populous county in North Carolina. Its county seat is Swan Quarter. The county was created in 1705 as Wickham Precinct. It was renamed Hyde Precinct in 1712 and gained county status in 1739.


The county was formed December 3, 1705, as Wickham Precinct, one of three precincts within Bath County. The name "Wickham" was derived from the manor of "Temple Wycombe" in Buckinghamshire, United Kingdom, the family home of John Archdale, Governor of North and South Carolina from 1695 to 1696. In 1712 it was renamed Hyde Precinct, for Edward Hyde, Governor of North Carolina from 1711 to 1712. In 1739 Bath County was abolished, and Hyde Precinct became Hyde County.

Various boundary adjustments followed. In 1745 Lake Mattamuskeet and its adjoining territory were transferred from Currituck County to Hyde County. In 1819 the part of Hyde County west of the Pungo River was annexed to Beaufort County. In 1823 the part of Currituck County south of New Inlet was annexed to Hyde County. This area included the present day Hatteras Island. In 1845 Ocracoke Island was transferred from Carteret County to Hyde County. In 1870 Hyde County was reduced to its present dimensions, when its northeastern part was combined with parts of Currituck County and Tyrrell County to form Dare County. Since its creation, the boundaries of Hyde County have changed more than those of any other county in North Carolina.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,424 square miles (3,690 km2), of which 613 square miles (1,590 km2) is land and 811 square miles (2,100 km2) (57%) is water. It is the second-largest county in North Carolina by total area. Hyde County's in-land is part of the Inner Banks. Ocracoke Island is part of the Outer Banks.

Adjacent counties

Bodies of water

National protected areas

Major highways

  • US 264
  • NC 12
  • NC 45
  • NC 94


Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 4,204
1800 4,829 14.9%
1810 6,029 24.8%
1820 4,967 −17.6%
1830 6,184 24.5%
1840 6,458 4.4%
1850 7,636 18.2%
1860 7,732 1.3%
1870 6,445 −16.6%
1880 7,765 20.5%
1890 8,903 14.7%
1900 9,278 4.2%
1910 8,840 −4.7%
1920 8,386 −5.1%
1930 8,550 2.0%
1940 7,860 −8.1%
1950 6,479 −17.6%
1960 5,765 −11.0%
1970 5,571 −3.4%
1980 5,873 5.4%
1990 5,411 −7.9%
2000 5,826 7.7%
2010 5,810 −0.3%
2020 4,589 −21.0%
2021 (est.) 4,508 −22.4%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

2020 census

Hyde County racial composition
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 2,928 63.8%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 1,152 25.1%
Native American 7 0.15%
Asian 7 0.15%
Pacific Islander 2 0.04%
Other/Mixed 146 3.18%
Hispanic or Latino 347 7.56%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 4,589 people, 1,947 households, and 1,378 families residing in the county.


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

Hyde County has no incorporated municipalities.

Census-designated places

Unincorporated communities


  • Currituck
  • Fairfield
  • Lake Landing
  • Ocracoke
  • Swan Quarter

A sixth township, Mattamuskeet, is now "unorganized territory" occupied by the federally controlled Mattamuskeet National Wildlife Refuge.


Hyde County is home to the smallest public school system in North Carolina. The Hyde County Schools comprises two schools.

  • Mattamuskeet School, K-12 serves the mainland
  • Ocracoke School, K-12 serves Ocracoke Island

The only private school in Hyde County is a small Mennonite school located in the northwest section of the county. This school serves the county's Mennonite population.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Condado de Hyde (Carolina del Norte) para niños

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