North Carolina, known as the “Mother of All Counties”, had fifty-five
counties formed from its original borders. More than one thousand lakes, made
by a 100,000 year old meteor shower, were also in existence within the original
boundaries of Bladen County. Seven lakes remain in Bladen County today. This
vibrant region, named for commissioner of trades and plantations Martin Bladen,
lies in NC’s picturesque southeastern
Coastal Plains region.
Census 2000 data, Bladen County, NC’s fourth largest county, boasts more
than 32,200 citizens. Ten different towns and villages encompass the nearly 880
square miles of Bladen County.
Elizabethtown, the county seat, serves as a hub of culture and commerce in
the immediate area. This small town, known for its hospitable atmosphere, is
home to 3,700 residents. Elizabethtown is the site of popular recreational
destinations such as
Jones Lake State Park. The 2,208-acre park features opportunities for
boating, fishing, hiking and swimming on its beautiful beaches.
The White Lake community holds a year-round population of approximately 500
residents; however, every summer the tourists explode the population to more
than 200,000 individuals. Visitors flock to White Lake, home of the “Nation’s
Safest Beach”, where boaters, swimmers and water-skiers enjoy the crystal clear
waters without the presence of dangerous currents or tides.
White Lake also offers other family-friendly attractions such as an
amusement park and golf course.
Dublin, population 250, hosts the regions annual Peanut Festival each
September. This popular festival features a golf tournament and rodeo that
attracts revelers from as far as
Wilmington and other coastal cities. Located in nearby
Singletary Lake State Park is another popular spot for visitors. The park
lies within the borders of the massive 36,000-acre Blade Lakes State Forest.
Bladen County includes several additional towns with less than one thousand
residents. These include
Tar Heel and
Bladen County operates a balanced economy driven by forty
different prosperous industries. Agriculture plays a significant role in the
region. According to the
1997 Census of Agriculture, Bladen County ranked fourth among the
nation’s counties responsible for producing hogs and pigs. Bladen County
projects a pro-business environment, with numerous incentives and resources
available for those who need it. Opportunities for employment also exist in the
assembly industries, chemicals, food processing, manufacturing and textile
Bladen Community College also contributes to the business-friendly
atmosphere by providing training for the local labor pool, in addition to its
wide variety of educational services. Several colleges and universities exist
in nearby counties, within a reasonable driving distance of Bladen County. In
addition, students at the primary and secondary levels have several top-notch
public schools available.
North Carolina has small, close-knit communities, coupled with nearby
metropolitan areas, affording residents the best of both worlds. An outstanding
quality of life, surrounded by the area’s natural splendor and strategic
location make Bladen County an enviable place to call home.