North Carolina is located in the southeastern corner of the state, with a portion lying in the bustling
Fayetteville Metropolitan Area. The county covers almost 400 square miles and is mostly rural land. Census 2000 data reported the population at 33,646 with a total of seven towns.
Raeford serves as the county seat and lies twenty miles from Fayetteville, seventy miles from the state capitol of
Raleigh, and borders the
Fort Bragg Military Complex. Its population is just under 4,000. The town of
Rockfish has almost 3,000 residents and is eleven miles from Fayetteville. Silver City numbers 1,146 people, and the remaining towns of Five Points, Dunderrach, Ashley Heights and Bowmore hold less than four hundred residents each.
Formed in 1911, the county originally was covered with cotton plantations, cotton being the sole base of its economy. As that industry declined and mechanization of farms increased during the last decades, Hoke County attracted much industrial development to replace agriculture.
Today the leading employers in the county are
Burlington Industries, the
Unilever Corporation, Unify and Hoke Rubber Products, and
Johnson Concrete. The
Raeford-Hoke Chamber of Commerce and their Economic Development Commission work together to entice new businesses into relocating to the area. Interstate 95 and US 401, along with state routes 20 and 211 provide quick access to the major metropolitan areas and markets.
Each year, Hoke County and Raeford host the Annual
North Carolina Turkey Festival, honoring the state's status as the number one leader in the turkey industry. Occurring since 1985,
music and entertainment has been offered, as well as an excellent selection of unique
North Carolina arts and crafts. The guests of honor of course, are the turkeys, served in a variety of ways. The town is also home to
House of Raeford, a leading corporation in poultry products.
Hoke County contains many historical cemeteries, and the Genealogical Society keeps past records preserved. The
Fort Bragg Military Cemetery is the most visited site, and a seventeen-mile historical tour within the complex itself shows twenty-four points of interest.
As the Fayetteville and Raleigh Metro Areas continue their phenomenal economic growth, Hoke County, North Carolina is sure to grow along with them.