Location in Virginia
|• Mayor||Gregory N. Crowder|
|• Total||5.7 sq mi (14.8 km2)|
|• Land||5.7 sq mi (14.8 km2)|
|• Water||0.0 sq mi (0.0 km2)|
|Elevation||2,516 ft (767 m)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1498493|
Hillsville is located at (36.758814, -80.734510).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 5.7 square miles (14.8 km²), all land.
Carroll County is located within the Blue Ridge Mountain range of the Appalachian Mountains. The Blue Ridge Parkway runs through Carroll County.
The climate in this area has mild differences between highs and lows, and there is adequate rainfall year round. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, Hillsville has a marine west coast climate, abbreviated "Cfb" on climate maps.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,607 people, 1,207 households, and 731 families residing in the town. The population density was 457.6 people per square mile (176.6/km²). There were 1,352 housing units at an average density of 237.3 per square mile (91.6/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 96.39% White, 0.19% African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.42% Asian, 1.76% from other races, and 1.07% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.34% of the population.
There were 1,207 households out of which 23.1% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.3% were married couples living together, 13.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.4% were non-families. 35.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 18.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.11 and the average family size was 2.71.
In the town the population was spread out with 18.8% under the age of 18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 23.8% from 25 to 44, 24.4% from 45 to 64, and 23.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years. For every 100 females there were 84.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.6 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $27,148, and the median income for a family was $36,117. Males had a median income of $26,625 versus $18,194 for females. The per capita income for the town was $16,633. About 12.9% of families and 16.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.3% of those under age 18 and 11.4% of those age 65 or over.
According to the Modern Language Association, there are (in descending order) 2,372 English speakers, 55 Spanish speakers, 18 Vietnamese speakers, 5 German speakers, 4 Italian speakers, 3 Portuguese speakers, and 3 Russian speakers. Thus, less than 4% of the town of Hillsville speaks a non-English language at home.
Hillsville Flea Market
The town's primary claim to fame is its Hillsville Flea Market (more properly known as the VFW Flea Market & Gun Show), which has been called the largest American flea market to the east of the Mississippi River. It is held twice a year; in 2004, the Labor Day show attracted 650,000 visitors, and the Memorial Day show attracted 250,000 visitors. Vendors and customers have arrived from as far away as Germany, Africa, and South Korea.
Carroll County Courthouse Shooting
On March 14, 1912, a gunfight broke out in the Carroll County courthouse during the trial of Floyd Allen, wealthy landowner and chief patriarch of the then-powerful Allen clan. Floyd was on trial for assault and battery, and interfering with deputies; the charges stemmed from an altercation with the law while trying to free his nephews, themselves arrested for fighting and disrupting a religious service. When Judge Thornton Massie sentenced Floyd to a year in jail, he openly refused to go, sparking the gun battle between lawmen and Floyd, backed by Allen family members present at the trial who came to Floyd's "aid"; an estimated fifty shots were exchanged.
Out of the 200 in attendance at Floyd's trial, five were killed (including Judge Massie and Sheriff Lewis Webb), while Floyd, his brother Sidna and five others were wounded. Floyd and most of his family managed to escape, but were soon captured in a massive manhunt led by the Baldwin Felts Detective Agency. For his part in the shooting, Floyd Allen received the death penalty, and was electrocuted in late March 1913. The story made national headlines until it was eclipsed by the sinking of the Titanic.
- Virginia Tech head football coach Frank Beamer is an alumnus of Hillsville High
- Kylene Barker, Miss America 1979, graduated from Hillsville's Carroll County High School
- Fussell, Fred C. (2003). Blue Ridge Music Trails: Finding a Place in the Circle. North Carolina Folklife Institute. 080785459X.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- Climate Summary for Hillsville, Virginia
- "Hillsville History". Hillsville, Virginia. Retrieved 2011-08-13.
- Official town website
- 1982 Article about the Courthouse Incident
- Living A Simple Life
- Advertising website for vendors and attendees of the annual Labor Day Flea Market and Gun Show