Williamston, North Carolina
Washington Street, Williamston
Washington Street, Williamston
Flag of Williamston, North Carolina
Official seal of Williamston, North Carolina
Motto: 
"Easy Living with Hometown Values"
Location of Williamston, North Carolina
Location of Williamston, North Carolina
Coordinates: 35°50′48″N 77°03′58″W / 35.84667°N 77.06611°W / 35.84667; -77.06611
CountryUnited States
StateNorth Carolina
CountyMartin
Area
 • Total4.51 sq mi (11.68 km2)
 • Land4.51 sq mi (11.68 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
Elevation62 ft (19 m)
Population
 (2020)
 • Total5,248
 • Density1,163.38/sq mi (449.14/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
27892
Area code252
FIPS code37-74220[3]
GNIS feature ID2406889[2]
Websitetownofwilliamston.com

Williamston is a town and the county seat of Martin County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 5,104 at the 2021 census.[4] It is located in North Carolina's Inner Banks region. The closest major city is Greenville,[4] approximately 28 mi to the southwest.

History

Williamston was founded in 1779, and named after William Williams, a local military commander during the American Revolution.[5]

Williamston was the focus of activity in the Civil Rights Movement.[6] Beginning in June 1963, civil rights activists protested at City Hall for 29 consecutive days led by Golden Frinks.[6] The Ku Klux Klan was very active in this part of the state during this time, including a well-documented rally in Williamston on October 5, 1963, attended by mostly local residents but with several carloads of attendees traveling over 150 miles to attend.[7]

On August 3, 2023, Martin General Hospital in Williamston announced that it would suspend operations due to Quorum Health, which operated the hospital, filing for bankruptcy. The hospital said that it faced challenges due to a declining population and residents opting to go to other hospitals. The next day, former hospital employees organized a protest after its closure. They said the goal was to get the attention of an elected official in hopes they would rethink the decision of the hospital being shut down.[8][9] On August 14-15, Governor Roy Cooper visited Williamston to hold roundtable discussions about the lack of access of medical care in rural areas. He used the recent closure of the hospital as an example of why he supported expanding Medicaid across rural areas of North Carolina.[10] On October 5, four clinics in Williamston also closed, further adding to the current healthcare crisis in the town. [11]

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 3.7 square miles (9.6 km2), all land. Williamston is on the Roanoke River.

Major highways include US 13, US 17 and US 64.

Climate

Climate data for Williamston, North Carolina, 1991–2020 normals, extremes 1952–present
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 80
(27)
86
(30)
89
(32)
95
(35)
97
(36)
101
(38)
101
(38)
101
(38)
100
(38)
97
(36)
86
(30)
82
(28)
101
(38)
Mean maximum °F (°C) 73.3
(22.9)
75.0
(23.9)
81.0
(27.2)
86.3
(30.2)
90.6
(32.6)
94.7
(34.8)
95.9
(35.5)
94.5
(34.7)
90.9
(32.7)
86.0
(30.0)
79.5
(26.4)
74.0
(23.3)
97.4
(36.3)
Mean daily maximum °F (°C) 51.8
(11.0)
54.9
(12.7)
62.0
(16.7)
71.4
(21.9)
78.2
(25.7)
85.3
(29.6)
88.5
(31.4)
86.9
(30.5)
81.8
(27.7)
73.0
(22.8)
63.1
(17.3)
55.3
(12.9)
71.0
(21.7)
Daily mean °F (°C) 42.5
(5.8)
45.2
(7.3)
51.8
(11.0)
60.8
(16.0)
68.5
(20.3)
76.3
(24.6)
79.9
(26.6)
78.4
(25.8)
73.0
(22.8)
62.6
(17.0)
52.7
(11.5)
45.8
(7.7)
61.4
(16.3)
Mean daily minimum °F (°C) 33.1
(0.6)
35.4
(1.9)
41.7
(5.4)
50.1
(10.1)
58.8
(14.9)
67.3
(19.6)
71.4
(21.9)
69.9
(21.1)
64.3
(17.9)
52.1
(11.2)
42.2
(5.7)
36.3
(2.4)
51.9
(11.1)
Mean minimum °F (°C) 17.1
(−8.3)
21.6
(−5.8)
26.7
(−2.9)
35.0
(1.7)
45.0
(7.2)
54.5
(12.5)
62.0
(16.7)
60.0
(15.6)
51.8
(11.0)
36.9
(2.7)
27.1
(−2.7)
23.0
(−5.0)
15.6
(−9.1)
Record low °F (°C) −3
(−19)
8
(−13)
7
(−14)
24
(−4)
34
(1)
45
(7)
51
(11)
49
(9)
40
(4)
22
(−6)
20
(−7)
4
(−16)
−3
(−19)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.69
(94)
3.22
(82)
4.13
(105)
3.72
(94)
3.69
(94)
5.13
(130)
5.75
(146)
5.70
(145)
6.92
(176)
4.29
(109)
3.39
(86)
3.57
(91)
53.20
(1,351)
Average snowfall inches (cm) 0.0
(0.0)
0.1
(0.25)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.0
(0.0)
0.4
(1.0)
0.5
(1.3)
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.01 in) 10.9 9.8 11.3 9.9 10.4 10.0 11.3 10.8 10.3 8.2 8.5 10.9 122.3
Average snowy days (≥ 0.1 in) 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.0 0.2 0.2
Source 1: NOAA[12]
Source 2: National Weather Service[13]

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.Note
1860616
1870520−15.6%
1880482−7.3%
189075155.8%
190091221.4%
19101,57472.6%
19201,80014.4%
19302,78154.5%
19403,96642.6%
19504,97525.4%
19606,92439.2%
19706,570−5.1%
19806,159−6.3%
19905,503−10.7%
20005,8436.2%
20105,511−5.7%
20205,248−4.8%
U.S. Decennial Census[14]

2020 census

Williamston racial composition[15]
Race Number Percentage
White (non-Hispanic) 1,638 31.21%
Black or African American (non-Hispanic) 3,234 61.62%
Native American 23 0.44%
Asian 60 1.14%
Other/Mixed 147 2.8%
Hispanic or Latino 146 2.78%

As of the 2020 United States census, there were 5,248 people, 2,274 households, and 1,388 families residing in the town.

2000 census

As of the census[3] of 2000, there were 5,844 people, 2,350 households, and 1,536 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,581.3 people per square mile (610.5 people/km2). There were 2,506 housing units at an average density of 678.2 per square mile (261.9/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 57.50% African American, 40.41% White, 0.29% Native American, 0.46% Asian, 0.09% Pacific Islander, 0.50% from other races, and 0.75% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.49% of the population.

There were 2,350 households, out of which 31.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% were married couples living together, 26.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 34.6% were non-families. 31.9% of all households were made up of individuals, and 16.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 3.00.

In the town, the population was spread out, with 26.8% under the age of 18, 7.7% from 18 to 24, 23.2% from 25 to 44, 21.7% from 45 to 64, and 20.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39 years. For every 100 females, there were 72.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 65.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $22,925, and the median income for a family was $32,984. Males had a median income of $28,661 versus $20,337 for females. The per capita income for the town was $14,125. 29.0% of the population and 22.8% of families were below the poverty line. 40.5% of those under the age of 18 and 28.6% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

Arts and culture

Williamston has long been a town centered around equine activity. Its logo showcases a horse and the town houses one of the largest agricultural centers in Eastern North Carolina - The Senator Bob Martin Agricultural Center. Many events including horse shoes, rodeos, tractor pulls, and monster truck shows take place in the Agricultural Center. Williamston also draws thousands of people to its annual "Carolina Country Stampede" each year in September which is a two-day festival showcasing local food, vendors, business owners and bands typically with a well known headlining band to end the Festival such as Emerson Drive in 2017.

Education

Williamston is one of the communities that is covered by Martin County Schools, a public school district that covers the entire county.[16] The schools in the Williamston area include:

Williamston is also home to Martin Community College, a public community college which is unique among other community colleges for having its own equine health program. [17]

Infrastructure

Williamston Fire Rescue EMS

Emergency services

The Williamston Fire Rescue EMS responds to approximately 2,500 fire, rescue, EMS or hazardous materials calls per year, and covers a 122 sq mi (320 km2) area. It has 19 full-time members, and approximately 37 volunteers.[18]

Notable people

References

  1. ^ "ArcGIS REST Services Directory". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved September 20, 2022.
  2. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Williamston, North Carolina
  3. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  4. ^ a b "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved June 7, 2011.
  5. ^ Federal Writers' Project (1938). The Ocean Highway: New Brunswick, New Jersey to Jacksonville, Florida. Works Progress Administration. p. 104.
  6. ^ a b Cunningham, David (2013). Klansville, U.S.A.: The Rise and Fall of the Civil Rights-Era Ku Klux Klan. Oxford University Press. p. 115. ISBN 978-0199752027.
  7. ^ Cunningham, David (2013). Klansville, U.S.A.: The Rise and Fall of the Civil Rights-Era Ku Klux Klan. Oxford University Press. pp. 48–49. ISBN 978-0199752027.
  8. ^ https://www.witn.com/2023/08/03/commissioner-martin-general-hospital-process-closing/
  9. ^ Martin General Hospital employees and others protest its sudden closure https://www.witn.com/2023/08/05/martin-general-hospital-employees-others-protest-its-sudden-closure/
  10. ^ https://www.witn.com/2023/08/14/governor-cooper-discuss-medicaid-expansion-rural-communities/
  11. ^ https://www.witn.com/2023/10/05/multiple-martin-county-clinics-closing-today/
  12. ^ "U.S. Climate Normals Quick Access – Station: Williamston 1 E, NC". National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Retrieved May 1, 2023.
  13. ^ "NOAA Online Weather Data – NWS Morehead City". National Weather Service. Retrieved May 1, 2023.
  14. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". Census.gov. Retrieved June 4, 2015.
  15. ^ "Explore Census Data". data.census.gov. Retrieved December 24, 2021.
  16. ^ https://www.martin.k12.nc.us/
  17. ^ https://www.witn.com/content/news/Martin-Community-College-students-head-back-to-school-with-horses-490514991.html
  18. ^ "Fire/Rescue/EMS". Town of Williamston, NC. Retrieved September 13, 2021.