Available on Amazon
North Carolina was the site of the first successful powered flight of a helicopter, which occurred in Asheville in 1924.
Burke County, located in the western part of North Carolina, has a rich and diverse history dating back thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, including the Catawba and Cherokee, who established thriving communities along the Catawba River.

European colonization began in the late 1700s when pioneers from the east started settling in the region. The first permanent European settlement was established in 1777 and was named Morganton in honor of Brigadier General Daniel Morgan. As the county seat, Morganton quickly grew into an important trading center, with agriculture and cattle farming being the primary economic activities.

During the American Revolutionary War, Burke County played a significant role as soldiers from the area fought bravely to secure independence from British rule. One noteworthy event was the Battle of Kings Mountain in 1780, where local patriots defeated a group of loyalists, marking a turning point in the war.

In the 19th century, the discovery of valuable mineral deposits, such as gold and iron, spurred further growth and development in Burke County. The mining industry boomed, attracting people from all over to seek their fortune. However, after the Civil War, the mining activity declined, and the county shifted to a more agriculture-based economy.

Today, Burke County is known for its scenic beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and historical landmarks. With its rich heritage and strong sense of community, the county continues to thrive and preserve its past while embracing the challenges of the future.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Burke County, North Carolina.

  • 1755: Burke County is formed from Rowan County and named after Thomas Burke, a prominent North Carolina politician.
  • 1777: The town of Morganton is established as the county seat of Burke County and becomes an important trading center.
  • 1780: During the American Revolutionary War, Burke County becomes a focal point of conflict as several major battles, including the Battle of Kings Mountain, are fought in the region.
  • 1806: The state legislature grants permission for the construction of a road through Burke County, contributing to its economic growth and development.
  • 1833: The Western Carolinian newspaper is established in Morganton, becoming one of the earliest newspapers in the region.
  • 1871: A devastating fire destroys much of downtown Morganton, leading to the construction of new brick buildings.
  • 1893: The arrival of the Western North Carolina Railroad brings increased connectivity and transportation opportunities to Burke County.
  • 20th century: Burke County experiences industrial growth with the establishment of textile mills and furniture factories, contributing to its economic prosperity.
  • 1970: The Linville Gorge Wilderness Area is designated within Burke County, preserving a pristine natural area for outdoor enthusiasts.
  • 1990s: Burke County becomes a popular filming location, with movies such as "The Last of the Mohicans" and "The Hunt for Red October" being filmed in the area.