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Morrisville - A brief history



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Morrisville was named for Jeremiah Morris, who donated three acres of land to the North Carolina Railroad in 1852 for a water station, woodshed and other buildings in support of the railroad. The deed transaction is believed to be on November 30, 1852, which references Crabtree Creek.

Wake County’s second railroad, the North Carolina Railroad from Goldsboro to Charlotte, was completed in 1856. This railroad fostered several communities - Cary, Morrisville, Garner and Auburn - along its line. Morrisville is the oldest of these communities, which established a railroad stop in the early 1850's. However, the town was not chartered until 1875.

On April 13, 1865, one of the last battles of the Civil War took place in Morrisville, the “Battle of Morrisville.” The Federal cavalry, under the command of Gen. Judson Kilpatrick, skirmished with the retreating Confederate armies at Morrisville Station. The Confederate troops were successful in evacuating their remaining supplies and wounded to the west toward Greensboro, NC. General Sherman's cavalry forced the Confederates to leave the train behind and retreat toward Durham, and the eventual surrender of the largest Confederate force of the war at Bennett Place.

By the early 1870's, the Morrisville area supported at least six general stores, Baptist and Christian churches, a hotel, a steam sawmill, a cabinetmaker, a lawyer and four physicians.

Today, Morrisville is the place to do business in the Raleigh/Research Triangle region. The business-friendly climate and enviable workforce attracts major employers in technology, health care and pharmaceuticals, including the world’s fourth largest and fastest growing PC manufacturer, Lenovo. Also in Morrisville are Time Warner Cable, Duke Medical Plaza Morrisville, Diosynth, Tekelec, PPD, Inc. and Salix Pharmaceutical.

Visit Morrisville today!


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