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The Mecklenburg Historical Association, Charlotte, NC

The Mecklenburg Historical Association is a county-wide group dedicated to preserving and publicizing the history of Mecklenburg County through regular meetings, publications, special research groups, work with various historic sites and special projects. Founded in 1954, it is the successor to several similar organizations going back to 1875. Today the MHA is a vibrant organization with full-membership meetings four times each year to share a meal and hear an interesting speaker. Various Project and permanent committees meet at other times to do their work in implementing the goals of the MHA. Read about these activities on this site and in our newsletters, sign up for The History List to receive up to date news of interest to the History Community, and come join us.

The MHA does not directly assist in research into the history of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. For genealogical inquiries, contact the Olde Mecklenburg Genealogical Society.

Our office is located at 1443 E 7th Street, #205, Charlotte, NC 28204, 704-408-5979.

Historic Affiliates Council

The Mecklenburg Historical Association is proud to be a part of the creation of the Historic Affiliate Council. The Council will be hosted by the MHA and include in the initial phase the following historical groups:

  • The Mecklenburg Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution,
  • The eleven chapters of the Mecklenburg area Daughters of the American Revolution (district three),
  • Preserve Mecklenburg,
  • The Charlotte Mecklenberg Historic Landmark Commission,
  • The Trail of History,
  • Charlotte Liberty Walk,
  • America 250,
  • May 20th Sociaty,
  • Charlotte Museum of History,
  • The Mecklenburg Genealogical Sociaty
  • The Mecklenburg Historical Association.

The primary goal of the Council is to share information with all Council members and assist on projects (as needed) to avoid duplication of efforts between the various groups.

The group will also raise awareness of projects that may align with the various Council members’ missions and facilitate cooperation among the members on projects of mutual interest.

The Council will maintain an online monthly Bulletin Board so the members can post event information visible to the other members and their organizations. This will be a standalone Bulletin Board that will be transmitted to the various groups (and their members at their discretion) and also reside on the MHA website.

The Council will not infringe on any of the members’ internal affairs.

As Mecklenburg County continues to grow at a fast pace it is imperative for our groups to communicate and use the strength of the Council to keep our exciting history in front of the community at large.

County History
Mecklenburg County was among the first of the “back country” counties of the Colony of North Carolina. The general area was first settled in the 1750s, and Mecklenburg County was formed out of Anson County in 1763. The principle city of Mecklenburg County is Charlotte, founded in 1768. Today Charlotte is the largest city in the two Carolinas, but it was a small country village up to the time of the Civil War. The county and city were named in honor of Princess Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz, the new bride of King George III of England.

Although Charlotte was not a large or important town during the early years, some interesting things happened here. Mecklenburg was the first government body in America to declare independence from the Crown of England, on May 20, 1775. This document was the famed Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence which you can read about on this site. Lord Cornwallis came to Charlotte in the fall of 1780 on his way to destroy the Continental Army, but he only stayed sixteen days. The local partisans were just too hot for him, and he later referred to Charlotte as “A Hornet’s Nest of Rebellion” giving rise to Charlotte being called the Hornet’s Nest City today. Mecklenburg County was the center of America’s first gold rush, from 1799 to 1861 (See Reed’s Gold Mine). The first US Branch Mint was built in Charlotte in 1837 and minted gold coins until the outbreak of the Civil War. The railroads came to Charlotte in 1852, giving Charlotte connections to both north and south and making it an early transportation center. Early in the Civil War the Confederate Naval Yard was relocated here from Norfolk, Virginia because of the railroads that ran through here. During the First World War there was a large training camp here, Camp Greene. During World War Two Charlotte hosted an Army Air Force training camp at Morris Field. Today Charlotte is the second largest financial center in the US.