Transylvania County, North Carolina
|Transylvania County, North Carolina|
Transylvania County Courthouse
Location in the state of North Carolina
North Carolina's location in the U.S.
|Named for||The Transylvania Company|
|• Total||381 sq mi (987 km2)|
|• Land||379 sq mi (982 km2)|
|• Water||2.0 sq mi (5 km2), 0.5%|
|• Density||87/sq mi (34/km²)|
|Time zone||Eastern: UTC-5/-4|
Prior to the early twentieth century, an overwhelming majority of Transylvania County’s residents subsisted through agriculture, often growing basic staples such as potatoes and cabbage.
In the later nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, the "Ecustas" acted as the county’s official baseball team, taking their mascot from the mythical, fire-breathing beast of Cherokee legend said to reside in the caves of the surrounding wilderness.
Beginning in the early twentieth century with Joseph Silverstein’s tannery, a manufacturing economy began to emerge in the county relying on timber and related products harvested from the Pisgah (later “National”) Forest. In the 1930s, Harry Strauss, an enterprising businessman opened a paper mill in the heart of the Pisgah, providing manufacturing jobs to hundreds of local residents. During the peak industrial years of the 1950s, DuPont located one of its factories in the county.
In the following decades, Brevard College and its namesake town each grew at an unprecedented rate, giving rise to a new period of cultural indulgence. It was during this period that the Brevard Music Festival began to attract bluegrass musicians and enthusiasts from around the country to Transylvania County.
Since the later part of the twentieth century, Transylvania County has experienced a rapid decline in economic prosperity, as most of the manufacturing operations that once operated there have since left the United States for more favorable business conditions in East Asia. Since that time, the county has worked to reshape its economy around the growing Appalachian summer and winter tourism industry.
In June 2013, 39 year-old Felicia Owen embarked on a two-gun, drunken shooting spree at a trailer park off of Patton Mountain Road, declaring boldly that she would “blow the brains out” of her target, Ronnie Laile. Despite her best efforts, Owen was unsuccessful in her attempt, only managing to wound Laile in the side.
There are over 250 waterfalls in the county. Receiving over 90 inches of rain annually, Transylvania County is the wettest county in the state. This is contrasted with Buncombe County, which is thirty miles northeast of Transylvania County receiving the lowest precipitation. The Blue Ridge Parkway traverses through parts of the county, affording spectacular views of the Appalachian Mountains, which reach over 6,000 feet (1,800 m) elevation in the county. The highest point, Chestnut Knob, 6,025 feet (1,836 m), lies northwest of the county seat Brevard.
- Henderson County - east
- Greenville County, South Carolina - southeast
- Pickens County, South Carolina - south
- Oconee County, South Carolina - southwest
- Jackson County - west
- Haywood County - northwest
- Buncombe County - northeast
National protected areas
As of the census of 2000, there were 29,334 people, 12,320 households, and 8,660 families residing in the county. The population density was 78 people per square mile (30/km²). There were 15,553 housing units at an average density of 41 per square mile (16/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 93.67% White, 4.21% Black or African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.38% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.31% from other races, and 1.12% from two or more races. 1.02% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 12,320 households out of which 25.10% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.60% were married couples living together, 8.70% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.70% were non-families. 26.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.40% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.74.
In the county the population was spread out with 20.40% under the age of 18, 8.20% from 18 to 24, 23.10% from 25 to 44, 26.90% from 45 to 64, and 21.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 92.70 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.50 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $38,587, and the median income for a family was $45,579. Males had a median income of $31,743 versus $21,191 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,767. About 6.60% of families and 9.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 11.80% of those under age 18 and 7.00% of those age 65 or over.
Law and government
Transylvania County is a member of the Land-of-Sky Regional Council of governments.
The current mayor of Brevard is Jimmy Harris.
Transylvania Regional Hospital (TRH), was formed in 1933 with the mission to serve the health care needs of this community. A 94-bed facility, fully accredited by the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO), Transylvania Regional Hospital offers comprehensive services through more than 120 active, consulting and courtesy physicians representing a full spectrum of specialties.
Points of interest
- Blue Ridge Community College, Transylvania campus
- Brevard Music Center
- Brevard College
- Blue Ridge Parkway
- DuPont State Forest
- Gorges State Park
- Looking Glass Falls
- Pisgah National Forest
- The Wilds Christian Camp
- Transylvania Arts Council
- Brevard Little Theater 
- Sliding Rock 
- Nantahala National Forest 
- Brevard (county seat)
- Cathey's Creek
- Dunn's Rock
- Little River
- Balsam Grove
- Cathey's Creek
- Cedar Mountain
- Connestee Falls
- Dunn's Rock
- Lake Toxaway
- Little River
- Pisgah Forest
- "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 30, 2013.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
- "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
- "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
- Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
- "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved January 20, 2015.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- HendersonvilleNews.com - The Times-News Online
- Cradle of Forestry In America website
- Transylvania County government website
- Transylvania County Library
- Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy
- Waterfalls in Transylvania County
- NCGenWeb Transylvania County - free genealogy resources for the county
-  - Free Insider Guide to Brevard and Transylvania County
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