While it’s great to leave and see the world, realize we have so much right here at home to explore. Take advantage of it while you can. Open your eyes to this place, and never assume you’ve seen it all. Meet someone new, and you will soon realize you have not.
Mayor: Robert A. Farrell
Town Manager: Bill Zell
Phone number: (910) 944-1115
Address: 115 N. Poplar St., 28315
Aberdeen, unlike newer neighboring resort towns, was a flourishing community as early as the 1760s. Located near the intersection of important regional roads, the town became the access point to two major railroads. Originally, Aberdeen was named Bethesda, then Blue’s Crossing and, finally, Aberdeen for the city in Scotland. Lumber, turpentine, industry and commerce were economic mainstays. Today, the Aberdeen Historic District includes 88 acres and more than 100 buildings from the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Antiques and collectible shops as well as Union Station are located there. Skirting the historic area is a thriving commercial strip that stretches along U.S. 1 into Southern Pines.
Mayor: Michael W. Thomason
Town Clerk: Carol Lucas
Phone: (910) 245-3212
Address: 247 Carter St., 28326
The town of Cameron, which was incorporated in 1876, quickly grew into a shipping point for area farmers because of the railroad. The rails linked the famous carriage factory in Carthage to the main railroad tracks in Cameron. In the 1920s, Cameron became widely known as the “Dewberry Capital of the World.” The dewberry is described as a milder version of the blackberry with a superior flavor. Dewberry desserts can still be purchased in restaurants there. Today, Cameron is a residential village with 19th century architecture and a dozen antiques and collectible shops on three blocks of the town’s main street. On the first Saturday in May and the first Saturday in October, the town’s population swells to around 10,000 as visitors fill the tree-lined streets to search for bargains at the Antique and Collectibles Fair.
Mayor: Lee McGraw
Town Manager: Tom Robinson
Phone: (910) 947-2331
Address: 4396 U.S. 15/501, 28327
Carthage, county seat of Moore, was permanently established in 1803 on land donated by Richardson Fagin. The town’s identity changed back and forth from Faginsville to Carthage until the state legislature settled the matter in 1818. County government, courts and many businesses now call the pleasant town of Carthage home. The imposing building now standing on Courthouse Square was erected in 1922, and is the fifth courthouse built on this site. The building houses county government offices and the commissioners’ meeting room. Alexander Kelly and Thomas Tyson founded a carriage factory in Carthage that became a legend in industrial history and was the dominant county industry for 70 years. It produced buggies that were sold throughout the United States until the firm closed in 1925. An annual Buggy Festival is held each May to celebrate this heritage. Many fine old stately homes still exist in the town, which is poetically known as “Sweet Carthage.”
Mayor: Steve Durham
Village Clerk: Lisa Kivett
Phone: (910) 295-5107
Address: 2145 Foxfire Road,
Suite 12, 1 Town Hall Drive, 27281
Early settlers of the place now called Foxfire Village referred to it as “Piney Bottom.” Native Americans once hunted on the sandy ridge that runs through it. The early settlers made their living from the pine forest that grew along the ridge by selling turpentine and construction timbers. Agriculture sprouted in the 20th century, offering plentiful crops of cotton, tobacco, corn, and rye. Vineyards and peach orchards also were plentiful. The community is named for a mysterious luminescence that sometimes appears on decaying plants and wood. In 1967, Rowland McKenzie began to develop the area, formerly a 2,200-acre farm, into a resort and residential community centered on golf. Foxfire Village was incorporated in 1977.
Mayor: Earlene McLamb
Town Clerk: Betty McDuffie
Phone: (910) 281-3124
Address: 325 E. Baltimore Ave., 28373
The town of Pinebluff lies just south of Aberdeen and a few miles north of the Richmond County line. It is located on the site that earliest references called “Patterson’s Bridge.” John T. Patrick, who was North Carolina commissioner of immigration, had founded Southern Pines as a resort for Northerners seeking peace, quiet and a healthful environment. Hoping to repeat his success a few miles away, Patrick purchased 772 acres from Luther C. Speare in 1884 and began to develop Pinebluff. He named the community’s streets for prominent Northern cities, and he published advertisements in Northern newspapers stressing the community’s mild, sunny winter climate, its fresh, pine-scented air and the convenient transportation provided by the Raleigh Augusta Railroad. By 1915, Pinebluff had five hotels and tea rooms. The hotels no longer exist. Town residents today enjoy Pinebluff Lake and a quiet, residential lifestyle.
Mayor: Nancy Roy Fiorillo
Village Manager: Jeff Sanborn
Phone: (910) 295-1900
Address: 395 Magnolia Road, 28374
Dreaming of developing a health resort for Northerners, Boston philanthropist James Walker Tufts bought 5,000 acres of pine barrens near Aberdeen in 1895. Frederick Law Olmsted designed a village for him, and 226,000 trees and shrubs were planted. By the early 1900s, the estate covered 10 square miles, with four hotels, 50 cottages, two excellent golf courses and a 35,000-acre shooting preserve. Trolleys transported guests to and from the Southern Pines train station along Midland Road. Scotsman Donald Ross designed more courses, including the famed No. 2. Soon the resort was hosting several national amateur golf tournaments. Today, Pinehurst is legendary throughout the golf world.
Mayor: Lonnie English
Town Manager: Jeff Sheffield
Phone: (910) 948-2431
Address: 101 N. Middleton St., 27325
The community now known as Robbins first bore the name Hazel Neck. Due to its location in the Piedmont or clay soil area of North Carolina, Hazel Neck attracted a number of potters and craftsmen. This collection of “mechanics” probably led to the community becoming known as Mechanics Hill. Over the years, the area bore several names, including Elise and Hemp. A textile mill was established in the area in 1926. It had several owners until it was purchased by Karl Robbins, a Russian immigrant who was a prominent figure in the textile industry. The town was eventually renamed to honor Robbins. Robbins’ annual Farmers Day celebration draws crowds that number in the tens of thousands.
Mayor: David McNeill
Manager: Reagan Parsons
Phone: (910) 692-7021
Address: 125 SE Broad St., 28387
Incorporated: March 7, 1887
In the 1850s, Charles Shaw acquired a state land grant in southern Moore County. It included a high ridge where he began cutting pines. In 1876, the Raleigh Augusta Railroad came through. Most of the trees were gone a few years later when John T. Patrick purchased 675 acres of land for $1,265 to build a health resort. He named the streets after Northern states. Southern Pines proved to be an ideal place for travel-weary train passengers to break their journey down from the north to Florida. By 1887, Southern Pines was a thriving resort. After World War I, novelist and publisher James Boyd initiated the equestrian and literary pursuits that remain as a big factor to this day.
Mayor: Ulysses S. G. Barrett Jr.
Town Clerk: Mabel Walden
Phone: (910) 295-4010
Address: 8350 Main St., 28374
An unincorporated community until 1987, Taylortown was developed in the early 1900s by Demus Taylor, grandson of one of the first African slaves brought to the New World and a descendant of the Western African tribe known as Ebu. He had purchased land from the Tufts family to build homes for the work force for Pinehurst’s hotels and golf courses. The town, first called Old Settlement, was renamed in his honor. Robert Taylor, the son of Demus Taylor, operated a small café that served as a gathering spot for the settlement. He also helped found a school for the settlement’s children. This school would become known as Academy Heights. Today Taylortown, with a population of 994, is a town with a strong sense of community. The town reflects the legacy of its founders as well as the courage and leadership of all who have come since.
Mayor: Eddie Callahan
Town Clerk: Bethany Johnson
Phone: (910) 245-4676
Address: 140 S. Alma St., 28394
The first European settlers of the area that later became known as Vass were primarily Scots, although there was also an early settlement of Germans. Changes came to the rural, pastoral community in the late 1800s with the laying of the Seaboard Air Line Railroad. The railroad made Vass one of the area’s heaviest shipping points for lumber, cotton products and farm produce. Originally called Bynum, then Winder, the little settlement was finally designated Vass in 1892 in honor of Major William W. Vass, who was a railroad paymaster. The town was incorporated in 1907. Mr. Alex Gunther was the town’s first mayor. At the turn of the century, Vass was a loading point for the tar produced from the area’s pine trees. Vass was once the home of three newspapers (The Pilot originated there), and it competed with neighboring Cameron for the title of “Dewberry Capital” in the 1920s.
Mayor: Bob Zschoche
Village Manager: Michelle Lexo
Phone: (910) 949-3141
Address: 10 Pine Ridge Drive, 28327
Incorporated: March 14, 1969
In 1769, Nicholas Smith received a king’s land grant for a lake and 50 acres of land. The mill he built on the lake was used to grind corn for rations during the American Revolution. In 1865, William Thagard, for whom the lake is named, built a new mill. Early in the 20th century, a rock and concrete dam was built by I.G. Chandler. A power plant operated there until 1927. With the purchase of the lake and 475 adjoining acres in 1959, A.B. Hardee began the development of a golf course and residential community. It has grown to 3,000 acres, with eight lakes and three semiprivate golf courses. Whispering Pines was incorporated in 1969 and includes three golf courses.