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Pamlico County, North Carolina facts for kids

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Pamlico County, North Carolina
Seal of Pamlico County, North Carolina
Map of North Carolina highlighting Pamlico County
Location in the state of North Carolina
Map of the USA highlighting North Carolina
North Carolina's location in the U.S.
Founded 1872
Seat Bayboro
Largest town Bayboro
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

567 sq mi (1,469 km²)
337 sq mi (873 km²)
230 sq mi (596 km²), 41%
 - (2010)
 - Density

39/sq mi (15/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Named for: Pamlico Indians

Pamlico /ˈpæmlɪk/ County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2010 census, the population was 13,144. Its county seat is Bayboro.

Pamlico County is part of the New Bern, NC Micropolitan Statistical Area.


The county was formed in 1872 from parts of Beaufort and Craven counties. It was named for Pamlico Sound, which adjoins it. Vernacular usage in the area, especially in Craven County, refers to Pamlico County as being "down in the county." Prior to 1872, it was a part of Craven County and has a very low elevation. Most of the county, according to FRIS, North Carolina Flood Risk Information System, much of the county is subject to flooding in storm surges. After it was separated from Craven, the old nickname survives. Pamlico County remains rural in character and flavor, although the last decade has brought a good deal of residential development, largely the result of northern retirees and investors attracted to the many miles of waterfront property.

The county is anchored on the east by the Town of Oriental, a popular waystation for boaters traveling the Intracoastal Waterway, and by unincorporated Lowland. New Bern across the county line in Craven County to the west, is the primary trade area for Pamlico County. The unincorporated community of Olympia is in the western county.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 567 square miles (1,470 km2), of which 337 square miles (870 km2) is land and 230 square miles (600 km2) (41%) is water.

Adjacent counties


Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 6,323
1890 7,146 13.0%
1900 8,045 12.6%
1910 9,966 23.9%
1920 9,060 −9.1%
1930 9,299 2.6%
1940 9,706 4.4%
1950 9,993 3.0%
1960 9,850 −1.4%
1970 9,467 −3.9%
1980 10,398 9.8%
1990 11,372 9.4%
2000 12,934 13.7%
2010 13,144 1.6%
Est. 2015 12,781 −2.8%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

Census reports show a marked drop of nearly 10 percent in county population from 1910 to 1920, the period of the Great Migration of African Americans from rural areas of the South to northern and midwestern industrial cities offering more economic and social opportunities. Workers were recruited by northern industries, including the Pennsylvania Railroad, which was rapidly expanding at the time.

As of the census of 2000, there were 12,934 people, 5,178 households, and 3,717 families residing in the county. The population density was 38 people per square mile (15/km²). There were 6,781 housing units at an average density of 20 per square mile (8/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 73.17% White, 24.57% Black or African American, 0.53% Native American, 0.38% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.59% from other races, and 0.74% from two or more races. 1.32% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 5,178 households out of which 25.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.60% were married couples living together, 11.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.20% were non-families. 25.00% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.10% 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 2.81.

In the county, the population was spread out with 21.10% under the age of 18, 6.40% from 18 to 24, 25.80% from 25 to 44, 28.00% from 45 to 64, and 18.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 101.40 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 99.80 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $34,084, and the median income for a family was $41,659. Males had a median income of $31,806 versus $21,344 for females. The per capita income for the county was $18,005. About 11.80% of families and 15.30% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.20% of those under age 18 and 13.40% of those age 65 or over.


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


Census-designated place

Unincorporated communities

  • Florence
  • Jenerio
  • Lowland
  • Maribel
  • Merritt
  • Olympia
  • Reelsboro
  • Whortonsville
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