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About Us

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Founded in 1771 and located at the geographic center of the state, Chatham County encompasses an area of more than 707 square miles and is known at the "The Heart of North Carolina." The county is situated between two of the state’s three largest centers of population and commerce, the Triangle Region and the Piedmont Triad.

Chatham County courthouse as rebuilt after fire on grand opening day

Historic Chatham County courthouse in the traffic circle in Pittsboro 

Pittsboro, the county seat located in the middle of the county, is just 20 minutes away from Research Triangle Park, Durham, Cary and Chapel Hill. It also is just 30 minutes from Greensboro and Raleigh. This gives us easy access to Raleigh-Durham Airport and major universities, such as University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Duke University, North Carolina State University, North Carolina Central University, University of North Carolina-Greensboro, North Carolina A & T University and Elon University.

The county has four incorporated towns within the county: Siler City, Pittsboro (county seat), Goldston and Cary, which has a small area in the eastern part of the county. We also have many unincorporated communities across the county, all of which have a rich history and unique rural features.

Small specialized farms, including organic vegetables and unique nurseries, are important in our county along with tourism, real estate and the arts. Beef cattle and poultry also are important to our agricultural economy.

We have a wide array of artists sprinkled throughout the county that produce high-quality pottery, paintings, sculpture, metalwork, fiber arts, jewelry, yard art and mixed media. However, manufacturing remains the source of jobs for Chatham County.

historic camelback truss bridge over Deep River
The historic Camelback Truss Bridge spans the Deep River and connects Chatham County to Lee County.

Photo by Duane Hall 

Chatham County is the home of Jordan Lake, a major recreational lake and water reservoir, but it also has several important rivers, including the Rocky River, the Haw River and the Deep River. The latter two converge to form the Cape Fear River.


Our diverse population includes a mix of both lifelong residents and newcomers, with increasing ethnic/racial diversity. Like most areas, our population is growing older, but we do have an influx of young people as well. We have one of the more highly educated working-age populations in the state