Vance County, North Carolina American History and Genealogy Project
Vance county was formed in 1881 from parts of Franklin, Granville, and Warren Counties. The formation of Vance County was accomplished as a political maneuver by the Democrats. In 1881, Blacks were voting Republican in large numbers. Granville and Franklin Counties were Democratic or Republican. From the Democratic standpoint, Warren County was hopelessly Republican, but by taking from Granville, Franklin and Warren, those sections that were heavily Republican and out of these sections forming the new county of Vance, the Democratic party could lose Vance to the Republicans and save Granville and Franklin for the Democrats. The new county was named after U.S. Senator Zebulon Baird Vance, a Democrat. Senator Vance often referred to the county as "Zeb's Black Baby" In the 1890 Census, Vance County was more than 63 percent African American.
Zebulon Baird Vance was the Governor of North Carolina from 1862 to 1865 and from 1877 to 1879. He was a United States senator from 1879 to 1894.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 270 square miles, of which, 254 square miles of it is land and 16 square miles of it is water. The 2010 census recorded a population of 45,422.
The county is divided into eight townships: Dabney, Henderson, Kittrell, Middleburg, Sandy Creek, Townsville, Watkins, and Williamsboro.
Vance is bordered on the north by Mecklenburg County, Virginia, on the east by Warren County, North Carolina, on the west by Granville County, North Carolina and on the south by Franklin County, North Carolina.
Remember when researching that if an event happened before 1881 to check out Franklin, Granville and Warren Counties for your research records.
If you see a category that you would like to have added to this site or have information to share that you do not see a category for please email the information to the Vance AHGP host. All information and corrections will be gladly welcomed. Thank you and Happy Hunting!
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