All About North Carolina


Overview of North Carolina

53,819 SQ. MI.
$540.497 Billion

North Carolina, which was at one time combined with South Carolina to form a single territory, was one of the original 13 colonies and became the 12th state in 1789. It sent the most troops to fight in the Civil War as part of the Confederacy before it was readmitted into the Union in 1868.

North Carolina offers a mild climate and 300 miles of shoreline. Geographically, the state is divided in three. Its Coastal Plain is filled with beautiful beaches, including the Outer Banks, which marks the spot where the Wright brothers made the first successful flight in history in 1903. Next comes the Piedmont, a plateau that stretches from Alabama to New York, and then the Appalachian Mountains.

The state's economy is largely knowledge-based, but it wasn't always that way. Following the Civil War, North Carolina industrialized its towns with hundreds of factories to become the furniture capital of the world and a major producer of textiles and tobacco products. North Carolina finally had the resources, including new railroads, to transform its plentiful tobacco, cotton and timber into profitable products. Tobacco mills produced cigarettes and chewing tobacco, textile mills spun cotton into clothing, and factories turned timber into quality furniture.

Today, North Carolina's economic base looks much different. The original three industries have declined over the years due to lower smoking rates, increased competition from other states and the creation of a global economy.

North Carolina's economy is now focused on industries such as food processing, banking, pharmaceuticals, technology and vehicle parts. Charlotte has grown to become the second-largest banking center in the nation, and Research Triangle Park is home to more than 200 companies.

Source: US news
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