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.

Pender County, North Carolina

Pender County Education, Geography, and HistoryPender County, North Carolina Courthouse

Pender County is a county located in the state of North Carolina. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 52,217. Its county seat is Burgaw.

Pender County is part of the Wilmington, NC Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Pender County Name

It was named in honor of General William D. Pender of Edgecombe, a Confederate soldier who was killed at the battle of Gettysburg.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Pender County History

Pender was formed in 1875 from New Hanover. It was named in honor of General William D. Pender of Edgecombe, a Confederate soldier who was killed at the battle of Gettysburg. It is in the southeastern section of the State and is bounded by the Atlantic Ocean and New Hanover, Brunswick, Columbus, Bladen, Sampson, Duplin and Onslow counties. The present land area is 870.67 square miles and the 2000 population was 41,082. The county commissioners were ordered to hold their first meeting at Rocky Point. The act provided for the establishment of the town of Cowan as the county seat. In 1877 an act was passed repealing that section of the law relative to the town, and another law was enacted whereby the qualified voters were to vote on the question of moving the county seat to South Washington or any other place which the majority of the voters designated. Whatever place was selected, the town should be called Stanford. In 1879 Stanford was changed to Burgaw, which was by that law incorporated. It is the county seat.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 933 square miles (2,420 km2), of which 870 square miles (2,300 km2) is land and 63 square miles (160 km2) (6.8%) is water. It is the fifth-largest county in North Carolina by land area.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Duplin County, North Carolina - north
  • Onslow County, North Carolina - northeast
  • New Hanover County, North Carolina - south
  • Brunswick County, North Carolina - south
  • Columbus County, North Carolina - southwest
  • Bladen County, North Carolina - west
  • Sampson County, North Carolina - northwest


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