7 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know About North Carolina

August 18th, 2016 by

North Caruthrolina officially received statehood in 1789. With such a long history, it’s no surprise that North Carolina has a lot of unique and interesting facts. From strange places to famous people, find out some things you may not know about North Carolina.

Oldest Public University
The oldest public university in the United States is located in North Carolina – the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill. This center of higher education was chartered in 1789 and started accepting students in 1795. Today, UNC Chapel Hill has over 29,000 students enrolled each semester.

Krispy Kreme
The world-famous Krispy Kreme donuts started out in North Carolina. The first Krispy Kreme donut was made on July 13, 1937. Founder Vernon Rudolph got a secret recipe from a chef in New Orleans and decided to open a donut shop. The shop was opened in the town that was Salem, but is now Winston-Salem. Originally, Rudolph planned to sell only to grocery stores, but he got so many requests from passers-by that he started selling to them, as well.

Famous Musicians
The state is well-known for the sheer number of famous musicians who made North Carolina their home. In fact, the state has had more American Idol finalists than any other state in the country. Chris Daughtry was one of these. He placed fourth in the fifth season of American Idol and is the lead vocalist and guitarist for the band Daughtry. Chris was born in Roanoke Rapids.

Babe Ruth
Fayetteville, North Carolina, saw something unique on March 7, 1914. This is the day that Babe Ruth hit his first professional home run. Fayetteville is also where Ruth got the nickname Babe. He was adopted by Jack Dunn, the manager of the Baltimore Orioles, to keep the player with the team. After other players found out, they started calling him “Dunn’s baby,” which later got shortened to Babe.

Sweet Potatoes
Over half of the sweet potatoes sold around the country are grown in North Carolina. The central and eastern part of the state process approximately 50,000 acres of sweet potatoes each year. When you combine the rich, fertile soil of the area with the hot, moist climate, you get the perfect conditions for sweet potatoes.

The Graveyard of the Atlantic
Be careful if you take a ship off Cape Hatteras. There have been over 1,000 ships lost, crashed, or disappeared off Cape Hatteras. Cape Hatteras is located on Hatteras island, which is one of the Outer Banks barrier islands. Part of the reason that this area is so dangerous for ships is that it is the highest-risk area for tropical storms and hurricanes on the Eastern seaboard.

Venus Fly Trap
The Venus Fly Trap is native to Hampstead, North Carolina. Today, you can find the plant throughout North Carolina and South Carolina. Unfortunately, the Venus Fly Trap is now an endangered plant due to the shrinking habitat and poachers.

As you can see, North Carolina is full of interesting and unusual facts. Take a look around the state, and you’ll find even more.

*Based on 2016 EPA mileage/highway estimates and driving range ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your MPGe/MPG and driving range will vary depending on driving conditions, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, battery age/condition, and other factors. For additional information about EPA ratings, visit


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