Onslow County
County of Onslow
The 1904 Onslow County Courthouse
The 1904 Onslow County Courthouse
Flag of Onslow County
Official seal of Onslow County
Motto(s): 
"Our mission is to deliver exceptional services that enhance the quality of life within our County"
Map of North Carolina highlighting Onslow County
Location within the U.S. state of North Carolina
Map of the United States highlighting North Carolina
North Carolina's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 34°43′N 77°25′W / 34.71°N 77.41°W / 34.71; -77.41
Country United States
State North Carolina
Founded1739
Named forArthur Onslow
SeatJacksonville
Largest cityJacksonville
Area
 • Total906 sq mi (2,350 km2)
 • Land763 sq mi (1,980 km2)
 • Water143 sq mi (370 km2)  16%%
Population
 • Estimate 
(2021)
206,160
 • Density270.2/sq mi (104.3/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district3rd
Websitewww.onslowcountync.gov

Onslow County is a county located in the U.S. state of North Carolina. As of the 2020 census, the population was 204,576.[1] Its county seat is Jacksonville.[2] The county was created in 1734 as Onslow Precinct and gained county status in 1739.[3] Onslow County comprises the Jacksonville, NC Metropolitan Statistical Area. The southern border is the coast of the Atlantic Ocean.

History

European, mainly English, settlers arrived here in 1713 in what was originally part of the colonial precincts of Carteret and New Hanover. Onslow County was formed in 1734 and was named for Arthur Onslow, the longest serving speaker of the House of Commons. After a lethal 1752 hurricane, the county courthouse was relocated from Town Point to Wantland's Ferry; this settlement was eventually incorporated in 1842 and named Jacksonville after President Andrew Jackson. Through much of the first half of the 20th century, the county was largely rural, with an economy based on agrarian and maritime communities.

During World War II, Onslow County was dramatically changed in the early 1940s with the establishment of the United States Army Camp Davis near Holly Ridge (now defunct), and the creation of Camp Lejeune in 1941. This increased county population and generated related growth in housing and businesses.

Onslow County's flat, rolling terrain covers 767 square miles (1,990 km2) and is located in the southeastern coastal plain of North Carolina, about 120 miles (190 km) east of Raleigh and 50 miles (80 km) north of Wilmington. The city of Jacksonville is the county seat, and the areas surrounding the city constitute the major population centers and growth areas in the county. The county is home to more than 150,000 people and includes the incorporated towns of Holly Ridge, Richlands, Swansboro, North Topsail Beach, part of Surf City and unincorporated Sneads Ferry. The U.S. Marine Corps Base, Camp Lejeune, comprises roughly 156,000 acres (630 km2); more than 43,000 marines and sailors are stationed there.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 906 square miles (2,350 km2), of which 763 square miles (1,980 km2) are land and 143 square miles (370 km2) (16%) are covered by water.[4]

State and local protected areas

Adjacent counties

Major water-bodies

Major highways

Other major Infrastructure

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
17905,387
18005,6234.4%
18106,66918.6%
18207,0165.2%
18307,81411.4%
18407,527−3.7%
18508,28310.0%
18608,8566.9%
18707,569−14.5%
18809,82929.9%
189010,3034.8%
190011,94015.9%
191014,12518.3%
192014,7034.1%
193015,2894.0%
194017,93917.3%
195042,047134.4%
196082,70696.7%
1970103,12624.7%
1980112,7849.4%
1990149,83832.9%
2000150,3550.3%
2010177,77218.2%
2020204,57615.1%
2021 (est.)206,160[5]0.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[6]
1790-1960[7] 1900-1990[8]
1990-2000[9] 2010-2019[10]
2020[11]

2020 census

Onslow County racial composition[12]
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 129,499 65.7%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 26,939 15.8%
Native American 1,019 0.5%
Asian 4,508 2.2%
Pacific Islander 777 0.38%
Other/Mixed 14,193 6.94%
Hispanic or Latino 27,641 12.9%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 204,576 people, 63,604 households, and 46,202 families residing in the county.

2000 census

As of the census[13] of 2000, 150,355 people, 48,122 households, and 36,572 families resided in the county. The population density was 196 people per square mile (76/km2). The 55,726 housing units averaged 73 per square mile (28/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 72.06% White, 18.48% African American, 0.74% Native American, 1.68% Asian, 0.19% Pacific Islander, 3.62% from other races, and 3.22% from two or more races. About 7.25% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

Of the 48,122 households, 42.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.00% were married couples living together, 11.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.00% were not families. About 18.60% of all households were made up of individuals, and 5.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.09.

In the county, the population was distributed as 26.20% under the age of 18, 23.80% from 18 to 24, 29.20% from 25 to 44, 14.40% from 45 to 64, and 6.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 25 years. For every 100 females, there were 123.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 131.30 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $33,756, and for a family was $36,692. Males had a median income of $22,061 versus $20,094 for females. The per capita income for the county was $14,853. About 10.80% of families and 12.90% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.70% of those under age 18 and 14.70% of those age 65 or over.


Education

Elementary schools

  • Bell Fork Elementary
  • Blue Creek Elementary
  • Carolina Forest Elementary
  • Clyde Erwin Elementary
  • Dixon Elementary
  • Hunters Creek Elementary
  • Heritage Elementary
  • Jacksonville Commons Elementary
  • Meadow View Elementary
  • Morton Elementary
  • Northwoods Elementary
  • Parkwood Elementary
  • Queens Creek Elementary
  • Richlands Elementary
  • Sand Ridge Elementary
  • Silverdale Elementary
  • Southwest Elementary
  • Stateside Elementary
  • Summersill Elementary
  • Swansboro Elementary
  • Thompson Early Childhood Center

Middle schools

  • Dixon Middle
  • Hunters Creek Middle
  • Jacksonville Commons Middle
  • New Bridge Middle
  • Northwoods Park Middle
  • Southwest Middle
  • Swansboro Middle
  • Trexler Middle

High schools

  • Dixon High
  • Jacksonville High
  • Northside High
  • Onslow Early College High
  • Richlands High
  • Southwest High
  • Swansboro High
  • White Oak High

Communities

Map of Onslow County, North Carolina With Municipal and Township Labels
Map of Onslow County, North Carolina With Municipal and Township Labels

City

Towns

Unincorporated community

Census-designated places

Townships

Politics, law, and government

Onslow is a typical "Solid South" county in its voting patterns. Except for the 1928 election, when anti-Catholic sentiment allowed Herbert Hoover to carry the county over Al Smith, it was solidly Democratic until 1968, during the FDR years by margins of as much as 13 to one in 1936. However, the 1960s onwards had Onslow turn to George Wallace in 1968 and then overwhelmingly to Richard Nixon over George McGovern in 1972. Since then, Onslow has become a strongly Republican county; the last Democrat to carry it was Jimmy Carter in 1976, and Carter in 1980 remains the last of his party to top 40%.

United States presidential election results for Onslow County, North Carolina[14][15]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 46,078 63.79% 24,266 33.59% 1,891 2.62%
2016 37,122 64.97% 17,514 30.65% 2,499 4.37%
2012 32,243 62.69% 18,490 35.95% 702 1.36%
2008 30,278 60.31% 19,499 38.84% 426 0.85%
2004 25,890 69.45% 11,250 30.18% 137 0.37%
2000 19,657 65.06% 10,269 33.99% 289 0.96%
1996 13,396 55.70% 8,685 36.11% 1,968 8.18%
1992 11,842 48.70% 8,045 33.08% 4,431 18.22%
1988 12,253 62.87% 7,162 36.75% 73 0.37%
1984 13,928 70.75% 5,713 29.02% 46 0.23%
1980 8,861 52.95% 7,371 44.04% 504 3.01%
1976 5,953 42.61% 7,954 56.94% 63 0.45%
1972 10,343 80.05% 2,424 18.76% 154 1.19%
1968 3,444 28.08% 3,281 26.75% 5,542 45.18%
1964 3,771 38.77% 5,955 61.23% 0 0.00%
1960 2,812 33.57% 5,564 66.43% 0 0.00%
1956 1,626 25.74% 4,692 74.26% 0 0.00%
1952 1,261 22.78% 4,275 77.22% 0 0.00%
1948 316 8.32% 3,318 87.34% 165 4.34%
1944 433 13.77% 2,711 86.23% 0 0.00%
1940 271 10.21% 2,383 89.79% 0 0.00%
1936 235 7.85% 2,758 92.15% 0 0.00%
1932 253 8.79% 2,615 90.89% 9 0.31%
1928 1,253 53.89% 1,072 46.11% 0 0.00%
1924 423 26.84% 1,122 71.19% 31 1.97%
1920 853 35.39% 1,557 64.61% 0 0.00%
1916 785 39.53% 1,197 60.27% 4 0.20%
1912 66 4.35% 901 59.39% 550 36.26%
1908 710 44.94% 870 55.06% 0 0.00%
1904 451 33.78% 828 62.02% 56 4.19%
1900 618 31.86% 1,322 68.14% 0 0.00%
1896 589 27.42% 1,559 72.58% 0 0.00%
1892 379 19.42% 1,137 58.25% 436 22.34%
1888 453 27.79% 1,177 72.21% 0 0.00%
1884 504 28.06% 1,292 71.94% 0 0.00%
1880 537 33.11% 1,085 66.89% 0 0.00%


Onslow County is a member of the regional Eastern Carolina Council of Governments.

The structure of local government in Onslow County was changed in 2016 to have seven commissioners in 2018 board of commissioners, all elected at-large for four-year terms. In contrast to electing members from districts, this structure means that candidates are elected by the majority population in the county, which gives a more accurate view of the entire electorate. On November 8, 2016, citizens voted in favor to alter the number of commissioners from five commissioners with concurrent terms to seven with staggered terms. In 2018, citizens elected two more county commissioners in the general election on November 6, 2018, to four-year terms. The citizens of the county will elect five commissioners in 2020, but the four candidates who receive the highest number of votes in the general election of 2020 will receive a four-year term and the candidate who receives the fifth-highest number of votes in the general election of 2020 to a two-year term. Thereafter, all county commissioners would be elected to serve four-year terms. The board establishes policies and ordinances implemented by the county manager and his staff. Commissioners are Jack Bright (chair), Royce Bennett (vice chair), Paul Buchanan, Robin Knapp, Mark Price, Tim Foster, and William Shanahan.

In the North Carolina Senate, Onslow County is located in the 6th Senate District, which is represented by Republican Harry Brown. In the North Carolina House of Representatives, Onslow County is split into three House districts with the 14th and 15th House Districts completely in Onslow County and the 16th House District in part of Onslow County and all of neighboring Pender County. The 16th District is represented by Republican Jimmy Dixon, the 14th District is represented by Republican George Cleveland, and the 15th District is represented by Republican Phil Shepard.[16]

The main law enforcement agency for Onslow County is the County Sheriff's Department. The elected sheriff is Hans Miller.

See also

References

  1. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Onslow County, North Carolina". www.census.gov. Retrieved April 19, 2022.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  3. ^ "North Carolina: Individual County Chronologies". North Carolina Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. The Newberry Library. 2009. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved January 25, 2015.
  4. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Archived from the original on January 12, 2015. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  5. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Onslow County, North Carolina". www.census.gov. Retrieved May 31, 2022.
  6. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  7. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  8. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 27, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  9. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Retrieved January 18, 2015.
  10. ^ "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census.[permanent dead link]
  11. ^ "U.S. Census Bureau QuickFacts: Onslow County, North Carolina". www.census.gov. Retrieved May 31, 2022.
  12. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved December 24, 2021.
  13. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  14. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". uselectionatlas.org. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
  15. ^ http://geoelections.free.fr/. Retrieved January 13, 2021. ((cite web)): Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ "DRA 2020". Daves Redistricting. Retrieved April 19, 2022.

Coordinates: 34°43′N 77°25′W / 34.71°N 77.41°W / 34.71; -77.41