Hickory, North Carolina

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Hickory is a city in Catawba County, North Carolina. Hickory has the 162nd largest urban area in the United States. As of the 2000 census, the city had a Metropolitan Statistical Area population of 341,851, making it the 4th largest metropolitan area in North Carolina. The city's population was 37,222 at the 2000 census. The city's 2009 estimated population is 41,469. The MSA, which includes Alexander, Burke, Caldwell, and Catawba counties, is often referred to as the "Unifour," although this name is largely unknown outside the region.[who?]



In the 1850s, under a huge Hickory Tree, Henry Robinson built a tavern of logs. The city of "Hickory Tavern" was established in 1863 and the name was eventually changed to "Hickory" in 1873.[3]

The first train operated in the city of "Hickory Tavern" in 1859. The first lot was sold to Henry Link for $45.00 in 1858. His house is now known as "The 1859 Cafe." The community of Hickory was the first for many things in North Carolina including the council-manager form of government it adopted in 1913. Hickory was also one of the first towns to install electric lights in 1888 and a complete sewage system in 1904.[4]

In 1868, Dr. Jeremiah Ingold, pastor of the German Reformed Grace Charge, established Hickory's first school, the Free Academy.[5]

In 1891, Lenoir-Rhyne University (then Highland Academy) was founded by four Lutheran pastors with 12 initial students.[6]

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