North Carolina Counties
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North Carolina Counties

North Carolina is divided into one hundred counties. The establishment of North Carolina counties stretches over 240 years, beginning in 1668 with the creation of Albemarle County and ending with the 1911 creation of Avery and Hoke counties. Five counties have been divided or abolished altogether, the last being Dobbs County in 1791.

Cherokee County, North Carolina

Cherokee County Education, Geography, and HistoryCherokee County, North Carolina Courthouse

Cherokee County is the westernmost county in the state of North Carolina. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 27,444. Its county seat is Murphy.

Etymology - Origin of Cherokee County Name

It was named in honor of the Indian tribe who still live in the western part of the State.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Cherokee County History

Cherokee was formed in 1839 from Macon. It was named in honor of the Indian tribe who still live in the western part of the State. It is in the western section of the State and is bounded by the states of Georgia and Tennessee and Graham, Swain, Macon and Clay counties. The present land area is 455.19 square miles and the population in 2000 was 24,298. The courts were ordered to be held at one of the houses at Fort Butler until a courthouse could be erected. Fort Butler was in the town of Murphy. Murphy is the county seat.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 467 square miles (1,210 km2), of which 455 square miles (1,180 km2) is land and 11 square miles (28 km2) (2.4%) is water.

Located in the southern Appalachian Mountains, Cherokee County contains a varied natural landscape. Portions of the county fall within the boundaries of the Nantahala National Forest, and the Hiawassee River - a tributary of the Tennessee River - flows through the county from southeast to northwest.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Graham County (northeast)
  • Macon County (east)
  • Clay County (southeast)
  • Union County, Georgia (south)
  • Fannin County, Georgia (southwest)
  • Polk County, Tennessee (west)
  • Monroe County, Tennessee (northwest)


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