04/15/2024
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A staff report

Bladen County, nestled in the heart of North Carolina, boasts a rich tapestry of history, diverse natural landscapes, and a flourishing industrial sector. Here are five intriguing facts that shed light on the unique characteristics of this captivating region.
1. Highland Scots and the Pursuit of Religious Freedom:
   Bladen County’s roots trace back to 1734 when Highland Scots sought refuge in the Cape Fear Valley, driven by a quest for religious freedom. These early settlers laid the foundation for a community that would thrive over the centuries, shaping the county’s distinctive heritage.
2. “Mother of Counties”:
   Once North Carolina’s largest county, Bladen earned the moniker “Mother of Counties” as it served as the birthplace for fifty-five other counties. Despite its reduction in size, Bladen County remains a significant and influential area, covering 879 square miles and ranking as the state’s fourth-largest county.
3. Meteor-Created Lakes:
   Bladen County’s landscape was once adorned with over 1,000 lakes, believed to have originated from a meteor bombardment around 100,000 years ago. Though the number has diminished, seven lakes within the county still stand as important recreational areas and tourist attractions, contributing to the county’s allure.
4. Diverse Natural Recreation Areas:
   With three rivers coursing through its boundaries, including the prominent Cape Fear River, Bladen County is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. From excellent fishing to state-owned parks like Jones and Singletary Lakes, the region provides ample opportunities for recreation. Commercially developed White Lake and growing Bay Tree Lake add to the county’s appeal.
5. Industrial Diversity and Economic Vitality:
   Bladen County’s economic landscape reflects its commitment to growth and diversity. Over 40 existing industries thrive, supported by a strong work ethic and high productivity deeply rooted in the county’s agricultural heritage. With a focus on food processing, manufacturing, textiles, chemicals, and agri-business, Bladen County stands as a hub of opportunity.
Bladen County, North Carolina, weaves together the threads of its history, natural beauty, and economic vibrancy to create a unique and thriving community. From its origins as a haven for Highland Scots seeking religious freedom to its status as the “Mother of Counties,” the county’s evolution is a testament to resilience and progress. Today, Bladen County welcomes visitors with its lakes, rivers, and warm climate, while industrious residents continue to build on their agricultural legacy, making this region a compelling destination where tradition and innovation coexist harmoniously.

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