Statesville history is not complete without a strong mention of the area’s incredible historical ties, and its long-standing history as a beacon of strength in the United States. Our dental office in Statesville, NC is proud to call the Statesville area home, and we hope you enjoy the rich history Statesville has to offer.
What’s In a Name?
Statesville, North Carolina is actually a fairly recent name. Prior to its christening (originally as “States Ville”), the area was actually identified by the name “Fourth Creek Settlement,” in honor of the creek running throughout the area.
The Heart of Iredell County
Statesville has been named the seat of Iredell County. It was given the appointment of “county seat” when it was officially incorporated in 1847. Considered the heart of Iredell County in part due to its size and in part due to its location, Statesville is home to a host of historical sites.
Statesville comes from humble origins. It was initially a small settlement developed by German and Scot-Irish settlers. The settlement grew exponentially after it was utilized as a military encampment, and its role in several different wars has continued to make it an important historical site today. Prior to its military use however, Statesville and Iredell County were prized for the farmland unique to the area.
The Land of Farming
Statesville was initially seen as a valuable piece of land because it possessed prime conditions for farming. Settlers came into the area after disease and war drove Native Americans from what is now known as Statesville.
The rich soil and humid conditions allowed the German and Irish settlers to enjoy rich, thriving crops, and contributed to the continued growth of the area.
Military Involvement: Fort Dobbs
Fort Dobbs was constructed during the French and Indian War, and continued to house military operations into the Revolutionary War. Fort Dobbs persisted as a stronghold during wartime situations, and remains today as a powerful source of history for people interested in the Revolutionary War. The area continues to be used as a source of education and information for tourists and local scholars.
Railroad, Public Power, and Tobacco: Fueling Growth
After its official incorporation in 1847, Statesville began to truly flourish. The railroad came to Statesville in 1858, and linked this part of North Carolina to the ATO railroad. The city grew as the railroad grew and, despite a tragedy caused by a train derailment in 1891, the goods and services brought by the railroad allowed Statesville to become the thriving city center it has grown into today.
Statesville was also at the forefront of technology with regard to power. In 1889, ahead of every other town in North Carolina, Statesville began to offer its citizens public power options. What began as an experiment, of sorts, has grown into a massive public power company today, and residents of the area are still proud to acknowledge the history of public power in North Carolina.
Although farming was the original source of life and trade in Statesville, one crop in particular would grow to be an important part of the local economy. Tobacco was easily grown in the area, and could fetch large sums of money. It was through a thriving tobacco industry that Statesville was able to furnish many of the historic buildings now prized in downtown Statesville.
Modern Statesville, NC
Today, Statesville remains the county seat of Iredell County, and continues to welcome visitors eager to learn more about the history of the United States by offering plenty of sites to visit.
From the wars that ravaged the early United States to the prohibition of liquor in the US, Statesville offers visitors and residents a rich tapestry of United States history, and continues to offer a wealth of education regarding the beginnings of the Eastern US.