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Alleghany County (1859) Encyclopedia

Alleghany County, one of North Carolina's most northern counties, is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Although it is the fifth smallest county in the state, Alleghany County has a rich heritage that is connected to the geography of the region.

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Appalachian State University Encyclopedia

Located in the western mountains of North Carolina in Boone, Appalachian State University was once a school dedicated to prepare teachers. Appalachian, or then Watagua Academy, was formed by the Dougherty brothers in 1899. Appalachian experienced great growth by the 1940s, and it was inducted into the University of North Carolina school system in the 1970s. Appalachian State University currently enrolls over 17,000 students, offering over 140 undergraduate and graduate programs.

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Ashe County (1799) Encyclopedia

A northwestern corner county in the mountains of North Carolina, Ashe was formed from sections of Wilkes County in 1799, and its seat of government is Jefferson. From 1784 to 1788 Ashe and several other counties formed an independent state known as Franklin. However, the state lasted only a short time due to continual attacks by surrounding Native Americans and the indifference of the national government.

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Avery County (1911) Encyclopedia

A county in North Carolina’s “High Country,” Avery was established in 1911 and earned the county the distinction as the hundredth-county in the state. One of the highest counties in the eastern United States, Avery County is in the Blue Ridge Mountains and is home to the man-made Linn Cove Viaduct and the natural-wonder Grandfather Mountain. Year after year, numerous tourists visit Avery, bringing over $50 million into the county’s economy annually.

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The Battle of Ramsourís Mill (June 20, 1780) Encyclopedia

With Georgia and South Carolina under British control, Lord Cornwallis focused all attention on North Carolina.  Two Tory commanders, Lt. Col. John Moore and Maj. Nicholas Welch, mounted an early attack on the Patriots in Lincoln County in June 1780. The Patriots, eventually learning the whereabouts of the Loyalists, launched a surprise attack at Ramsour’s Mill on June 20, 1780. At the Battle of Ramsour’s Mill, an outnumbered Patriot force routed the Loyalists.

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William Blount (1749-1800) Encyclopedia

As businessman, Revolutionary War veteran, signer of the Constitution, territorial governor, and United States Senator, William Blount spent his lifetime looking for opportunities. No place in the late-eighteenth century United States  offered better opportunities for a person with Blount’s disposition and connections than did the trans-Appalachian frontier. Ultimately Blount’s grasp exceeded his resources, leading Blount to devise a desperate plan that failed—and led to his expulsion from the United States Senate.

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Blue Ridge Parkway Encyclopedia


Stretching nearly 470 miles from the Shenandoah National Park to the Great Smoky Mountains, the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina is a popular tourist attraction.  In 1912, Colonel Joseph Pratt had an idea for a mountainous parkway; however, funding issues contributed to its intermittent construction.  The Blue Ridge Parkway was completed in 1987 with the construction of the Linn Cover Viaduct.

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Buncombe County (1791) Encyclopedia

Home to the city of Asheville and the Biltmore Estate, Buncombe County was founded in 1791, and it is named in honor of the Revolutionary Colonel Edward Buncombe. The county is nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, and its history and culture attractions are well-known.

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Burke County (1777) Encyclopedia

Named in honor of Dr. Thomas Burke, the county of Burke was organized by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1777. The “Western State Capital,” Burke is a western, mountain county that has the highest number of government employees (500) outside of Raleigh. The region is also well known for its numerous state parks, and the South and Blue Ridge Mountains that pass through the county.

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Caldwell County (1841) Encyclopedia

Named after Joseph Caldwell, the first president of the University of North Carolina, Caldwell County was created in 1841 and formed out of Burke and Wilkes counties by the North Carolina legislature.

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Tod Robinson Caldwell (1818-1874) Encyclopedia

Tod Robinson Caldwell is noteworthy in North Carolina history for at least three reasons: he was the first lieutenant governor of North Carolina; he was the second Republican governor of the state; and he assumed governor’s duties after William Woods Holden, the first North Carolina Republican governor, was impeached.

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Cherokee County (1839) Encyclopedia

Since its charter in 1839, Cherokee County has experienced economic and demographic change.  The county's population has grown from 3,000 in 1839 to approximately 25,000.  Today, Cherokee County is a popular destination for tourists, and mountain living is a popular choice for many retirees.

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Chowan University Encyclopedia

Chowan University, established in 1848, is a four-year higher education institution located in Murfreesboro in Hertford County. Like many other private colleges in North Carolina, the Baptists led the early formation of Chowan and the university remains affiliated with the Baptist State Convention. Today, Chowan enrolls approximately 1,300 students, and the institution offers over 60 different athletic programs.

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Clay County (1861) Encyclopedia

Nestled in the southwest corner of North Carolina and in the Appalachian Mountains, Clay County benefits from a bustling tourism industry centered on its landscape and historical landmarks.

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Fred Crawford (1910-1974) Encyclopedia

Coached by Duke University football coach Wallace Wade, Fred Crawford developed into one of the nation's premier football players during the early 1930s.  He was the first Tar Heel to become an All-American.

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