Zebulon, North Carolina

Coordinates: 35°49′32″N 78°19′0″W / 35.82556°N 78.31667°W / 35.82556; -78.31667
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Zebulon, North Carolina
Downtown Zebulon at the intersection of Arendell Ave. and Horton St.
Downtown Zebulon at the intersection of Arendell Ave. and Horton St.
Flag of Zebulon, North Carolina
Official seal of Zebulon, North Carolina
"The Town of Friendly People"
Location in Wake County and the state of North Carolina.
Location in Wake County and the state of North Carolina.
Coordinates: 35°49′32″N 78°19′0″W / 35.82556°N 78.31667°W / 35.82556; -78.31667
CountryUnited States
StateNorth Carolina
CountiesWake, Johnston (Partial), Nash (Partial), Franklin (Partial)
Named forZebulon Baird Vance[1]
 • MayorGlenn York
 • Total6.12 sq mi (15.84 km2)
 • Land6.09 sq mi (15.77 km2)
 • Water0.03 sq mi (0.08 km2)
Elevation322 ft (98 m)
 • Total6,903
 • Density1,134.06/sq mi (437.85/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code919
FIPS code37-76220[4]
GNIS feature ID0997745[3]

Zebulon is the easternmost town in Wake County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 6,903 at the 2020 census.[5] Zebulon is part of the Research Triangle metropolitan region. Five County Stadium, home to the Carolina Mudcats minor league baseball team, is located in the town. In May 2022, Zebulon was ranked North Carolina's second fastest growing town, only behind neighboring Wendell.[6]


Five County Stadium in Zebulon

In 1906 the Raleigh and Pamlico Sound Railroad Company decided to bring the railroad through the Whitley and Horton family farms in eastern Wake County. Edgar B. Barbee and Falconer B. Arendell organized the Zebulon Company for development that same year. The company received its charter on February 15, 1906. Shortly thereafter, they began to divide up their 49 acres (20 ha) into lots, blocks, streets and avenues. On February 16, 1907, the town was officially recognized as Zebulon, North Carolina. The town was named after Zebulon Baird Vance, the Governor of North Carolina during the American Civil War. The first election was held in May 1907, and the first elected mayor was Thomas J. Horton.

In 1997 Zebulon annexed the neighboring community of Wakefield, increasing the total area inside the corporate limits to 2,115 acres (8.56 km2) and the population to 3,908. The population had grown to 6,903 by 2020.[5]

There are three properties in Zebulon listed on the National Register of Historic Places: Wakelon School, Bennett Bunn Plantation, and the George and Neva Barbee House.

Law and government[edit]

Zebulon follows the council-manager government form, where the elected governing body is responsible for legislative functions such as establishing policy, passing local ordinances, and developing an overall vision. The council then appoints a professional town manager, who is responsible for overseeing administrative operations, implementing policies and advising the council.

Zebulon is governed by a six-member Board of Commissioners, which is made up of five commissioners and the mayor. Three of the members are elected in one year and the two remaining members and the mayor are elected two years later. The mayor, as the principal elected official of the town, provides leadership to the governing body and the community, and presides over board meetings.

As the legislative body of Zebulon, the Board's primary responsibilities include establishing town policies and adopting an annual budget. Local municipality budgets, for each fiscal year, must be adopted by June 30 each year. The budget for the fiscal year runs from July 1 to June 30.[7]

Current Board members include Shannon Baxter, Quentin Miles, Beverly Wall Clark, Larry Loucks, Jessica Harrison, and Mayor Glenn York. The Town Manager is Joe Moore.[8][9]


Zebulon is located at 35°49′32″N 78°19′0″W / 35.82556°N 78.31667°W / 35.82556; -78.31667 (35.825523, -78.316675).[10]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 4.2 square miles (10.8 km2), of which 4.1 square miles (10.7 km2) is land and 0.02 square miles (0.06 km2), or 0.57%, is water.[11]

Zebulon is located in the northeast central region of North Carolina, where the North American Piedmont and Atlantic Coastal Plain regions meet. This area is known as the "Fall Line" because it marks the elevation inland at which waterfalls begin to appear in creeks and rivers. Its central Piedmont location situates Zebulon about three hours by car west of Atlantic Beach, North Carolina, and four hours east of the Great Smoky Mountains.

Zebulon is located on an elevated portion of land between the Little River and Moccasin Creek.[12]


Zebulon has a cool subtropical climate or warm temperate climate, with moderate temperatures in the spring, and fall. Summers are typically hot with high humidity. Winter highs generally range in the low 50s°F (10 to 13 °C) with lows in the low-to-mid 30s°F (-2 to 2 °C), although an occasional 60 °F (15 °C) or warmer winter day is not uncommon. Spring and fall days usually reach the low-to-mid 70s°F (low 20s°C), with lows at night in the lower 50s°F (10 to 14 °C). Summer daytime highs often reach the upper 80s to low 90s°F (29 to 35 °C). The rainiest months are July and August.[citation needed]


Historical population
2022 (est.)7,974[6]15.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[13]

2020 census[edit]

Zebulon racial composition[14]
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 2,554 37.0%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 2,741 39.71%
Native American 29 0.42%
Asian 78 1.13%
Other/Mixed 364 5.27%
Hispanic or Latino 1,137 16.47%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 6,903 people, 1,884 households, and 1,274 families residing in the town.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 4,046 people, 1,551 households, and 1,059 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,250.9 people per square mile (483.6/km2). There were 1,661 housing units at an average density of 513.6 per square mile (198.5/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 53.66% White, 39.74% African American, 0.57% Native American, 1.01% Asian, 4.00% from other races, and 1.01% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.60% of the population.

There were 1,551 households, out of which 35.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.9% were married couples living together, 20.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.7% were non-families. 26.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 10.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.09.

In the town, the age distribution of the population shows 28.3% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 31.9% from 25 to 44, 18.6% from 45 to 64, and 12.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 85.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 81.4 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $36,250, and the median income for a family was $43,986. Males had a median income of $31,199 versus $24,563 for females. The per capita income for the town was $17,026. About 12.8% of families and 16.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 24.3% of those under age 18 and 11.6% of those age 65 or over.


Zebulon's largest employer is GlaxoSmithKline, which operates a facility in the town and employs over 1,500 people. Other major employers in the town are US Food Services Inc., Nomacorc LLC, Nomaco, Inc., and Devil Dog.[15] In addition to these businesses, WakeMed operates the Zebulon/Wendell Outpatient and Skilled Nursing Facility, a satellite facility for the hospital's primary location in Raleigh.[16] In rural areas of the town, agriculture is still an important aspect of the local economy with products such as cotton, tobacco, wheat, corn and soybeans being grown. Zebulon is also home to a booming coat making industry, relying heavily on tourists to support this business.


Primary and secondary education[edit]

Zebulon is home to four public schools: Wakelon Elementary School, Zebulon Elementary School, and Zebulon Middle School. High school students attend nearby East Wake High School in Wendell.

There is one charter school, East Wake Academy, and one private school, Heritage Christian Academy.

Higher education[edit]

Higher education is provided by Wake Technical Community College or by other educational institutions in Wake County and surrounding areas. These institutions teach medicine, law, religion, the arts, and nursing to name a few. Institutions such as North Carolina State University, Shaw University and Meredith College, East Carolina University, UNC Chapel Hill, Duke University, Campbell University, Peace College and St. Augustine's College


The Wake County Public Library System operates a branch facility in Zebulon.[17]

Parks and recreation[edit]

  • Little River Dam and Park – natural park situated along the Little River with a dam and waterfall; picnic areas and hiking trails
  • Zebulon Community Park – 47 acres (190,000 m2) and includes two basketball courts, athletic fields, walking trails, championship disc golf course, picnic shelters, playground, and fitness stations
  • Whitley Park – picnic areas, two playgrounds, tennis courts, benches and various shelters
  • Gill Street Park – basketball courts, playgrounds, and picnic areas[18]
  • Zebulon Elementary School Park – two baseball fields, picnic shelter, soccer field, playground, grass volleyball court
  • Wakelon Elementary School Park – two multipurpose fields, picnic shelter




  • US 64 and US 264 split in Zebulon. East of Zebulon they provide access to the Outer Banks, US 64 via Rocky Mount, and US 264 via Wilson. West of Zebulon the two roads remain merged as the Knightdale Bypass which connects eastern Wake County to Raleigh. There is also a Business US 64 which connects Zebulon, Wendell, and Knightdale and represents several former alignments of US 64. Interstate 540 also connects 64 Business, 264 Bypass, I-440 and I-40.
  • NC 96 is a primary north–south highway through the town. It connects Zebulon to Rolesville to the north and Selma to the south.
  • NC 39 is another north–south highway that connects Selma to Louisburg and Henderson. It passes to the east of Zebulon near Five County Stadium.
  • NC 97 is a former alignment of US 64. It parallels US 64 and connects several small unincorporated communities along its route.

Notable people[edit]



  1. ^ "History". Archived from the original on 2017-06-21. Retrieved 2016-10-30.
  2. ^ "ArcGIS REST Services Directory". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 20, 2022.
  3. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Zebulon, North Carolina
  4. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. ^ a b "Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2020 Demographic Profile Data (DP-1): Zebulon town, North Carolina". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 26, 2022.
  6. ^ a b Stradling, Richard. "Wake County again has NC's fastest-growing towns, but maybe not the ones you think". newsobserver.com. Retrieved 1 June 2022.
  7. ^ Town Government
  8. ^ Departments
  9. ^ Board of Commissioners
  10. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  11. ^ "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Zebulon town, North Carolina". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved December 30, 2011.
  12. ^ Zebulon North Carolina - The Town of Friendly People
  13. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2016.
  14. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved 2021-12-20.
  15. ^ Demographics
  16. ^ WakeMed Zebulon/Wendell Outpatient and Skilled Nursing Facility
  17. ^ WakeGOV.com - Zebulon Branch Library
  18. ^ Parks in Zebulon
  19. ^ E. C. Daniel in his Zebulon, North Carolina Drugstore. trumanlibrary.gov. Retrieved October 29, 2020.
  20. ^ [LContainers/Bombshell/Side-Solid&SkinSrc=[L]Skins/bombshell/base-skin Nick Driver > Bombshell Beer Company]. Retrieved July 16, 2020.
  21. ^ (May 5, 2018). [Candidate Profile: Marty Gearheart, U.S House of Representatives, 3rd District]. The Register~Herald. Retrieved July 16, 2020.
  22. ^ Jim Pearce Stats. Baseball-Reference. Retrieved October 29, 2020.
  23. ^ Former Pro Wrestler, Strongest Man Competitor Found Dead. WRAL.com. Retrieved October 29, 2020.

External links[edit]