Cabarrus County, North Carolina

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Cabarrus County, North Carolina
File:Old Courthouse Concord 1.jpg
Old Cabarrus County Courthouse
Seal of Cabarrus County, North Carolina
Map of North Carolina highlighting Cabarrus County
Location in the U.S. state of North Carolina
Map of the United States highlighting North Carolina
North Carolina's location in the U.S.
Founded 1792
Named for Stephen Cabarrus
Seat Concord
Largest city Concord
 • Total 364 sq mi (943 km2)
 • Land 362 sq mi (938 km2)
 • Water 2.7 sq mi (7 km2), 0.7%
 • (2014 est) 192,103
 • Density 492/sq mi (190/km²)
Congressional districts 8th, 12th
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4

Cabarrus /kʌˈbærʌs/ [1] County is a county located in the south-central part of the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2010 census, the population was 178,011.[2] The county seat is Concord,[3] which was incorporated in 1803.

Cabarrus County is included in the Charlotte-Concord-Gastonia, NC-SC Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Among its significant historic sites is the Reed Gold Mine, a National Historic Landmark.


The county was formed on December 29, 1792 from Mecklenburg County. It was named after Stephen Cabarrus of Chowan County, speaker of the North Carolina House of Commons.

The county was settled mainly by Germans on the Eastern side and the Scotch-Irish in the Western area of the county. There was a need to choose a location for the county seat to develop facilities for county government but the Germans and Scotch-Irish each wanted the county seat to be in an area close to their populations and were unable to come to an agreement. Stephen Cabarrus wrote to the citizens pleading with them to come together in peace to choose a location for their county seat. A central area of the county was chosen in 1796 and aptly named Concord, a derivative of two French words "with" and "peace." Representative Paul Barringer introduced a bill into state legislature to incorporate Concord and this bill passed on December 17, 1806.[4] The town of Concord was begun on land owned by Samuel Huie and wife Jane Morrison Huie.[5]

The first substantiated gold find in America was in 1799 by young Conrad Reed while playing in Little Meadow Creek in southeastern Cabarrus County located on the Reed farm. According to research, Conrad's find was approximately the size of a shoe and weighed 17 pounds.[6]:11 John Reed, father of Conrad, took the nugget into Concord to a silversmith who informed Reed that the rock did not have any value and the elder Reed took the rock home where it stayed for three years until a trip in 1802 to Fayetteville where Reed sold the nugget to a jeweler for $3.50. Over time news traveled back to John Reed that the jeweler sold the nugget for several thousand dollars and Reed traveled back to Fayetteville to ensure he was more fairly compensated; this spurred the beginning of gold mining in the area[7]

John Reed or Johannes Rieth as he was known in Staatsarchiv at Marburg, Germany was one of thousands of Hessian soldiers brought over by British troops to fight against rebellious colonists in the American Revolution. John Reed deserted, as did many other Hessians, and migrated from Georgia to North Carolina, where he settled in an ethnic German community sometime around 1787 and began farming.[8]

John Reed first developed placer mining on his property, then underground mining, and became wealthy from the gold. His mine became known as Reed's Gold Mine. Large amounts of gold were being discovered at the Reed Gold Mine and in other mines in the United States; these mine owners began to use their gold to create currency. In order for the government to retain control of the production of currency and keep a stabilized economic structure, President Andrew Jackson signed into legislation the authorization to create branches of the US Mint. The Charlotte Mint was built to handle the gold coming from the rich gold veins of North Carolina which included Reed Gold Mine.[9]

The Reed Gold Mine was designated a National Historic Landmark, as it was the first gold mine in the country. Gold was mined in North Carolina into the early 20th century. Visitors at the site today can explore some of the mine's reconstructed tunnels.[10]

Old Courthouse

The old Cabarrus County Courthouse was finished in 1876 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974. The Confederate soldiers monument is located on the front lawn area.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 364 square miles (940 km2), of which 362 square miles (940 km2) is land and 2.7 square miles (7.0 km2) (0.7%) is water.[11]

Cabarrus County is situated in the gently rolling countryside of the Carolina Piedmont There are no significantly high peaks or points, although the eastern half of the county contains the westernmost foothills of the Uwharrie Mountains. Altitude ranges from approximately 500–800 feet above sea level. No large or navigable rivers flow through the county; the nearest navigable waterway is the Yadkin River in nearby Rowan County. Land slope is generally toward the southeast. The longest waterway within the county is Rocky River, which rises in Iredell County and empties into the Pee Dee below Norwood in Stanly County. Weather is temperate with hot summers and mild to chilly winters. Severe weather occurs occasionally, with thunderstorms in the warmer months of the year and ice storms and snowfalls occurring on occasion in winter. From zero to three accumulating snowfalls may be expected in an average winter. Snow generally melts between accumulating snowfalls, and there is no consistent snowpack. An average of four inches (102 mm) of snow and 46 inches (1,200 mm) of rain falls each year. At summer solstice, the length of day is approximately 14 hours and 33 minutes, with visible light lasting 15 hours and 32 minutes.

Adjacent counties

Major highways


Historical population
Census Pop.
1800 5,094
1810 6,158 20.9%
1820 7,248 17.7%
1830 8,810 21.6%
1840 9,259 5.1%
1850 9,747 5.3%
1860 10,546 8.2%
1870 11,954 13.4%
1880 14,964 25.2%
1890 18,142 21.2%
1900 22,456 23.8%
1910 26,240 16.9%
1920 33,730 28.5%
1930 44,331 31.4%
1940 59,393 34.0%
1950 63,783 7.4%
1960 68,137 6.8%
1970 74,629 9.5%
1980 85,895 15.1%
1990 98,935 15.2%
2000 131,063 32.5%
2010 178,011 35.8%
Est. 2014 192,103 [12] 7.9%
U.S. Decennial Census[13]
1790-1960[14] 1900-1990[15]
1990-2000[16] 2010-2013[2]

As of the census[17] of 2000, there were 131,063 people, 49,519 households, and 36,545 families residing in the county. The population density was 360 people per square mile (139/km²). There were 52,848 housing units at an average density of 145 per square mile (56/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 83.26% White, 12.18% Black or African American, 0.34% Native American, 0.91% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 2.30% from other races, and 0.99% from two or more races. 5.05% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 49,519 households out of which 34.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.20% were married couples living together, 10.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.20% were non-families. 21.80% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.00% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.60 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the county the population was spread out with 25.80% under the age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 32.50% from 25 to 44, 22.10% from 45 to 64, and 11.60% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 97.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.10 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $46,140, and the median income for a family was $53,692. Males had a median income of $36,714 versus $26,010 for females. The per capita income for the county was $21,121. About 4.80% of families and 7.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.30% of those under age 18 and 9.60% of those age 65 or over.

Agriculture has played an important part in the economic life of the county for over 200 years. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, textiles became a vital part of the local economy, especially in the northern portion of the county. Today, the local economy has a more varied base.

Communication is via an Interstate highway, Interstate 85, which travels southwest to northeast across the county's northern portion, and several U.S. and state highways. These principal highways include U.S. highways 52, 29, 601, and NC highways 73, 24/27, 200, 49, and 3. Concord Regional Airport (airport code JQF) is located seven miles (11 km) west of Concord. Commercial flights to the area are accessed through the airports at Charlotte, or at Greensboro, North Carolina. Passenger rail service to Kannapolis is available via Amtrak. Both wired and wireless telephone services are nearly universally available in the county. Cable television is available in much of the county. Cabarrus County is within the Greater Charlotte area for broadcast communications.

Most residents of Cabarrus County are Caucasian of Scots-Irish, German, or English-Welsh extraction. A minority population of African American residents inhabit the county.


The different religious denominations represented in the county are mainly Protestant. A small Jewish synagogue, Temple Or Olam exists in the area as well as two Catholic churches, St. James The Greater Catholic Church located in Concord and St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Kannapolis. Eastern Orthodox and Islamic congregations are available in nearby Charlotte.[18]

Law and government

Cabarrus County is a member of the regional Centralina Council of Governments. Cabarrus County is governed by a five-member Board of Commissioners, elected at large in countywide elections to serve four-year staggered terms. The county's operations are managed by a "County Manager".[19]

Cabarrus County Land Records is a division of Tax Administration, a department of Cabarrus County Government. Land Records is responsible for creating and maintaining property records for all parcels in the county. Cabarrus County Land Records along with Cabarrus County Information Technology Services developed CLaRIS (Cabarrus County Land Records Information System), and award winning public access and inquiry system for citizens to look at and use land records data.[20]

The Stonewall Jackson Youth Development Center, a juvenile correctional facility of the North Carolina Department of Public Safety serving boys, is located an unincorporated area in the county, near Concord.[21]


The Cabarrus County School System services all of the county with the exception of parts of Kannapolis, which operates its own school district. The system is generally regarded as one of the better school districts in the state with high student achievement and low instances of violence and other problems.

The county is also home to Barber-Scotia College, the Cabarrus College of Health Sciences (a four-year college), and a branch of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. UNC Charlotte, although in Mecklenburg County, is actually located near Harrisburg and is easily accessible to Cabarrus residents via [Highway 49]

Cabarrus County citizens are served by the Cabarrus County Public Library system which comprises four library locations and a fifth location to be built in the town of Midland.


Reed Gold Mine

Essential services, including Carolinas Medical Center-NorthEast with a 24-hour emergency department and trauma center, are available in Concord. There are no VA hospitals or military installations in the county.

The state's largest tourist attraction, Concord Mills Mall, is located in Cabarrus County. The Great Wolf Lodge is located near the mall on the opposite side of Interstate 85.

The county is home to Reed Gold Mine, site of the first gold discovery in the United States in 1799.


Self-branded as the Center of American Motorsports, Cabarrus County is rich in NASCAR history.

The western part of the county is home to a large racing complex in Concord, including Charlotte Motor Speedway, which hosts three NASCAR Sprint Cup Series events a year, The Dirt Track at Charlotte Motor Speedway, and zMAX Dragway, which now hosts the NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series twice a year. Concord Speedway (formerly Concord Motorsport Park), located southeast of Concord in Midland, hosts weekly NASCAR Whelen All-American Series races in the early spring through fall.

The county is also home to several major race shops, including Hendrick Motorsports, Roush Fenway Racing, Richard Petty Motorsports, and Chip Ganassi Racing in Concord, Stewart-Haas Racing in Kannapolis, and JTG Daugherty Racing and Wood Brothers Racing in Harrisburg.

A state of the art and first of its kind wind tunnel, Windshear, opened July 18, 2008 in Concord. It offers aerodynamic testing facilities to NASCAR and Formula One racing teams and automobile manufacturers.


The area is served by the Concord-Kannapolis Independent Tribune in print and online and The Weekly Post, a weekly newspaper. Radio station WTIX 1410 AM serves the area with a Classic Country music format. WTIX broadcasts from a tower on US Highway 29 North near Poplar Tent Road in Concord and has studios in the Hidden Plaza at 308 Church Street North in Concord.


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




The county is divided into twelve townships, which are both numbered and named:

Other communities

There has been a push for incorporation in the Odell School community, which is located in the northwestern corner of the county. The current residents hope to incorporate as a means to avoid annexation by the city of Kannapolis.[citation needed]

See also


  1. Talk Like A Tarheel, from the North Carolina Collection's website at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Retrieved 2013-02-08.
  2. 2.0 2.1 "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 18, 2013.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. Horton, Clarence E., Jr. An Historical Sketch of Olde Concord, 1796-1860, pp.1-6
  5. Huie, Marsha,
  6. Williams, David, 1993, The Georgia Gold Rush: Twenty-Niners, Cherokees, and Gold Fever, Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, ISBN 1570030529
  7. Roberts, Bruce. The Carolina Gold Rush pp. 5-7
  8. Schwalm, M.A. A Hessian Immigrant Finds Golds: the Story of John Reed pp. 1-8
  9. Birdsall, Clair M. The United States Branch Mint at Charlotte, North Carolina: its History and Coinage pp. 1-3
  10. NC Historic Sites - Reed Gold Mine,, accessed 26 Feb 2014.
  11. "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved January 12, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  12. "Annual Estimates of the Resident Population for Incorporated Places: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2014". Retrieved June 4, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  13. "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 12, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 12, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  15. Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 12, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  16. "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved January 12, 2015.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  17. "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  18. InfoGroup Company. 2013 Polk City Directory, Concord, NC.Business Section, pp. 10-12.
  19. Cabarrus County Board of Commissioners, Retrieved 1/31/2014
  20.[dead link]
  21. "Youth Development Centers." North Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Retrieved on August 8, 2010. "Contact Information: 1484 Old Charlotte Road Concord, N.C. 28027"

External links

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