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The city of Hendersonville is found in Henderson County, North Carolina. Hendersonville is located 30 minutes southeast of a large neighboring town named Asheville. Just like the county, Hendersonville borrows its name from Judge Leonard Henderson, a North Carolina Supreme Court Judge who lived there. Judge Henderson died in 1833, just five years before the creation of the county. The city was founded in 1838 and was referred to as “The City of the Four Seasons”. It was created from Rutherford County and part of Old Buncombe County. Recently, the Mayor claimed this was the most ideal city for retirees, owing to its relatively calm surroundings. The city has downtown adjoining areas with plenty of restaurants, boutiques, antique shops – many found in buildings that have housed several businesses up to the 1980’s. The architecture in this area is a reflection of the 19th and 20th century artwork. Most of the revitalization of the city’s downtown took place in the early 1990s.
The history of Hendersonville, NC dates far back to over 1,000 years ago when it was part of the Cherokee nation. In 1777 and 1785 after the treaties with the Cherokee, the land was opened for settlement by the pioneers of the early Appalachian Mountains. Most land grants can be traced back to 1777, with a number of them occurring after the Revolutionary War that took place from 1783 up to 1785. Most of the early settlers were the Revolutionary War Veterans including Matthew Maybin, Joseph Henry and Andrew Miller, among others. There were pioneers like William Mills who came along in the 1780’s to settle in this city.
The county of Henderson is referred to as a typical mountain county since it consists of mountain ranges, valley areas, rolling plateaus and isolated peaks. There are steady elevations that range from 1400 feet near Bat Cave found at the foot of a Blue Ridge mountain ridge, up to 5,000 feet on Little Pisgah Mountain. The county is almost circled by mountains at the inter-mountain plateau where it is located. To the east and south, the county gets into contact with the Blue Ridge and Saluda Mountains while to the west, it touches Pisgah Ledge. Hendersonville NC is bordered by Buncombe County to the north, and Rutherford and Polk counties to the east.
The primary economic activity in the area was agriculture. The earliest settlers grew corn, potatoes, cabbage, wheat and rye. While settling into this region, the settlers carried some fruit trees with them that still exist today. Hendersonville, NC has hundreds of apple orchards in the area, many have retail shops open to the public during the harvest season. Dairy farming was also another thriving economic activity that earned a steady income for a variety of households.
Today however, tourism is the largest income earner due to the geographical make-up of the county. Most tourists throng to this haven to escape from the sweltering heat found within a large part of region, and come here to experience the cool mild climate. This city has been welcoming guests for over a century. This has led to a strong tourism base in the region. It led to resilience during the Second World War. Currently, the economy depends highly on agriculture, manufacturing, retirement and largely tourism.
There are a variety of museums and historical sites. The most conspicuous site is the Mineral and Lapidary Museum which is located at 400 North Main Street in Hendersonville’s downtown. The museum has a variety of beautiful exhibits like minerals, giant geodes, Tyrannosaurus, and dinosaur eggs. The museum is also home to Henderson County Genealogical and Historical Society. Even though entry to the museum is free, this has not stopped money from trickling in through tourism. There is also a children’s museum, named “Hands’ On!”, which houses educational exhibits meant to stimulate learner’s curiosity to make it fun. The admission fee is very reasonable.
Hendersonville, NC has favorable climatic conditions, making it a good place for retirement for the elderly. The population stood at 13,288 as per the 2012 Census. The population density is estimated to be at 1,749 per square mile. There were about 5,181 housing units as of 2000. Out of the 4,579 households, 20.7% had children below 18 years living with them. Married couples living together were 39.6% and 12.9% were women living without husbands. 44.2% were non-families, 22.1% were persons above 65 years with the median age being 45 years. Out of 100 females, there were 82.2 males.
The median income for a number of homes was estimated to be around $30,357, with the median income of a family being $39,111. While females had a median income of $22,770, males had a median income of $30,458, far more than that of their female counterparts. The per capita income for the city was $19,926, with about 16.8% of the families living below the poverty line. The figures included people over the age of 65 years whose percentage stood at 10.5%.
The most sought after tourist attraction sites in this city include the Hendersonville Railway Station which is located at Maple Street and Seventh Avenue, in the Seventh Avenue Depot District. The line was opened by the Southern Railway in 1879, a year before the one at Asheville. Passenger train service ended in 1968. Another site for tourism is The Oakdale Cemetery found to the west of Main Street along Route 64 West. The place has inspired some writers to create novels like is evident in Thomas Wolfe’s novel by the title “Look Homeward Angel”. It was published for readers in 1929.
The city boasts one of the largest street festivals in the southeast, known as the North Carolina Apple Festival. Sometimes 50,000 spectators come to this street festival. There is the Historic Johnson Farm situated at 3346 Haywood Road. This tobacco farm was started in 1878 and served as a summer tourist destination in the early part of 1920’s. Admission to the farm is free. However, anyone in need of a guided tour is charged $2 and $3. There is also the Western North Carolina Air Museum located near Hendersonville Airport. The museum features airplanes that were used during the earlier years before modern aviation was achieved. The airport is situated between Hendersonville and Flat Rock. Girls have a summer camp located outside of Hendersonville, known as Camp-Ton-A-Wandah. There is also the Hendersonville Little Theater that was established in 1966. It was moved from its original location to Red State Barn, a unique location.
Health insurance in Hendersonville, NC is made available by WNC Health Insurance – always providing high standards of professional advice to their customers. WNC Health Insurance has a number of agents in designated areas to discuss customers’ needs concerning the types of coverage they may need. They offer a wide variety of healthcare plans, from private insurance for families, individuals and employees, to government-subsidized health insurance plans such as the types offered by the ACA (Affordable Care Act). Their agents walk their customers through the confusing maze of applying for health insurance.
Hendersonville, NC boasts of several media stations which serve the Spartanburg-Greenville-Asheville and other designated market areas. The station found nearest Hendersonville is ABC Channel 13 WLOS, which is based in the nearby town of Asheville. There are also major TV broadcasters like NBC Channel 4, CBS Channel 7, Fox Channel 21, and PBS Channel 33 among others. A popular newspaper in this city is the Hendersonville Times-News. The most recognizable company is Bon Worth which was founded in 1976. It is a clothing manufacturer.
Some of the recognized names of Hendersonville NC are:
- Bat Cave – a small tourist town named after the Bat Cave Mountain. The mountain was inhabited by a number of bats, and under it, there was a huge fissure cave.
- The Reverend Samuel Edney was the first Methodist preacher in the Western Part of North Carolina. He had the city of Edneyville named after him.
- Balfour – a tiny town north of Hendersonville. William Balfour Troy opened a rock quarry in 1880 and it was named after him.
- The city of Fletcher was named after the Fletcher Family; Dr. George Washington was a member.
- The French Broad River is located in the Horse Shoe River basin.
- The town of Mills River was named after the river that flows through the community.
- Henderson County was named after Judge Henderson, as we mentioned.
- Zircon mines found in the area gave rise to the name Zirconia.
Educationally, Hendersonville NC has a variety of schools that have made great strides in academics. Most schools have a curriculum that is meant to achieve success and mold graduates who are globally competitive. These graduates are prepared for college and life in general. Most schools have received national recognition for successful academic achievements. A number of them are competing in the job market with exceptional academic backgrounds. Educational departments include; Fire Fighter Academy, Automotive Academy, Business and Finance Academy, Physical Fitness Academy, Human Services Academy, Mechatronics Academy among others. A number of schools have embraced technology, helping students graduate with the technological know-how to be able to win well-paying jobs. Two recognized schools are North Henderson High School and Hendersonville High School.
As you can see, Hendersonville NC is a wonderful place to live. It has a sublime climate, beautiful natural surroundings, a charming downtown, lovely neighborhoods with calm peaceful atmospheres, and great educational systems. Hendersonville is also a wonderful place to visit, what with all of its amazing attractions, museums, festivals, shops, restaurants and gorgeous outdoor scenery. Nicknamed the “Friendliest City in America in 2008,” Hendersonville is a destination that you really must visit and enjoy!