These Are The 10 North Carolina Cities With The Largest Black Population For 2018


We used science and data to determine which cities in North Carolina have the largest African American population.

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The Black community is one of the fastest growing communities in America this decade.

There are now 42 million people who identify as Black or African American living in America, making up 12% of the total population. According to the most recent American Community Survey, the Black population in North Carolina is 2,104,597 – at 21.2% of the total population of North Carolina.

The percentage growth of Blacks in America is the third largest percentage change for any race according to the Census’s race and ethnicity definition. As most scholars and historians agree, an increase in the diversity in America is a good thing.

We agree.

But how has the increase in the black population impacted North Carolina? Which cities and towns in North Carolina have seen the greatest increase in its Black population?

We broke down the most recent census data to determine the cities in North Carolina with the largest African American population in 2018:

  1. Williamston (Photos)
  2. Kinston (Photos)
  3. Wadesboro (Photos)
  4. Rocky Mount (Photos)
  5. Henderson (Photos)
  6. Oxford (Photos)
  7. Elizabeth City (Photos)
  8. Goldsboro (Photos)
  9. Roxboro (Photos)
  10. Laurinburg (Photos)

Williamston took the number one over all spot for the largest Black population in North Carolina for 2018. See if it ranked as one of the most african american cities in America.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked.

To see where North Carolina ranked as a state on diversity, we have a ranking of the most diverse states in America.

And if you already knew these places were Black, check out the best places to live in North Carolina or the most diverse places in North Carolina.

How We Determined The Cities In North Carolina With The Largest Black Population For 2018

We still believe in the accuracy of data — especially from the census. So that’s where we went to get the breakdown of race across North Carolina.

That lead us to the Census’s most recently available data, the 2012-2016 American Community Survey data from the US Census.

Specifically, we looked at table B03002: Hispanic OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE. Here are the category names as defined by the Census:

  • Hispanic or Latino
  • White alone*
  • Black or African American alone*
  • American Indian and Alaska Native alone*
  • Asian alone*
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone*
  • Some other race alone*
  • Two or more races*
* Not Hispanic or latino

Our particular column of interest here was the number of people who identified as Black or African American.

We limited our analysis to non-CDPs with a population greater than 5,000 people. That left us with 126 cities.

We then calculated the percent of residents that are Black or African American. The percentages ranked from 66.3% to 0.0%.

Finally, we ranked each city based on the percent of Black population with a higher score being more Black than a lower score. Williamston took the distinction of being the most Black, while Carolina Beach was the least African American city.

Read on for more information on how the cities in North Carolina ranked by population of African American residents or, for a more general take on diversity in America, head over to our ranking of the most diverse cities in America.

1. Williamston

Williamston, North Carolina

Population: 5,534
% African American: 66.32%
# Of African American Residents: 3,670
Percent Change Since 2010: 13.87%
More on Williamston: Data | Jobs

2. Kinston

Kinston, North Carolina

Population: 21,393
% African American: 64.82%
# Of African American Residents: 13,867
Percent Change Since 2010: -5.63%
More on Kinston: Data | Jobs

Kinston is a city in Lenoir County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 21,677 at the 2010 Census. It has been the county seat of Lenoir County since its formation in 1791. Kinston is located in the coastal plains region of Eastern North Carolina.

3. Wadesboro

Wadesboro, North Carolina

Population: 5,577
% African American: 62.83%
# Of African American Residents: 3,504
Percent Change Since 2010: 20.04%
More on Wadesboro: Data | Jobs

Wadesboro is a town in Anson County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 5,813 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Anson County.

4. Rocky Mount

Rocky Mount, North Carolina

Population: 56,175
% African American: 62.53%
# Of African American Residents: 35,125
Percent Change Since 2010: 2.76%
More on Rocky Mount: Data | Jobs

Rocky Mount is a city in Edgecombe and Nash counties in the Atlantic coastal plain region of the U.S. state of North Carolina. Although it was not formally incorporated until February 28, 1907, the North Carolina community that became the city of Rocky Mount dates from the beginning of the 19th century. The first post office in the area opened in 1816. The city’s population was 57,685 at the 2010 census, with an estimated population of 56,325 in 2014. Rocky Mount has received the All-America City Award from the National Civic League two times, in 1969 and 1999.

5. Henderson

Henderson, North Carolina

Population: 15,258
% African American: 62.48%
# Of African American Residents: 9,533
Percent Change Since 2010: 4.25%
More on Henderson: Data | Jobs

Henderson, a city with a population of 15,368 at the 2010 census, is the county seat of Vance County, North Carolina, United States.

6. Oxford

Oxford, North Carolina

Population: 8,707
% African American: 52.74%
# Of African American Residents: 4,592
Percent Change Since 2010: -2.26%
More on Oxford: Data | Jobs

Oxford is a town in Granville County, North Carolina, United States, with a population of 8,461 as of the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Granville County.

7. Elizabeth City

Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Population: 18,025
% African American: 51.9%
# Of African American Residents: 9,355
Percent Change Since 2010: -9.95%
More on Elizabeth City: Data | Jobs

Elizabeth City is a city in Pasquotank County, North Carolina, in the United States. As of the 2014 census, it had a population of 18,047. Elizabeth City is the county seat and largest city of Pasquotank County. It is the cultural, economic and educational hub of the sixteen-county Historic Albemarle region of northeastern North Carolina.

8. Goldsboro

Goldsboro, North Carolina

Population: 35,924
% African American: 50.56%
# Of African American Residents: 18,162
Percent Change Since 2010: -9.19%
More on Goldsboro: Data | Jobs

Goldsboro is a city in Wayne County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 36,437 at the 2010 Census. It is the principal city of and is included in the Goldsboro, North Carolina Metropolitan Statistical Area. The nearby town of Waynesboro was founded in 1787 and Goldsboro was incorporated in 1847. It is the county seat of Wayne County. The city is situated in North Carolina’s Coastal Plain and is bordered on the south by the Neuse River and the west by the Little River, about 43 miles southwest of Greenville and 55 miles southeast of Raleigh, the state capital and 87 miles northwest of Wilmington in Southeastern North Carolina. Goldsboro is best known as home to Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

9. Roxboro

Roxboro, North Carolina

Population: 8,329
% African American: 48.95%
# Of African American Residents: 4,077
Percent Change Since 2010: 11.91%
More on Roxboro: Data | Jobs

Roxboro is a city in and the county seat of Person County, North Carolina, United States. The population was 8,362 at the 2010 census. The city is 30 miles north of Durham and is a part of the four-county Durham-Chapel Hill Metropolitan Statistical Area, which has a population of 504,357 as of the 2010 Census. The Durham-Chapel Hill MSA is a part of the larger Raleigh-Durham-Cary Combined Statistical Area, which has a population of 1,749,525 as of the 2010 Census.

10. Laurinburg

Laurinburg, North Carolina

Population: 15,601
% African American: 48.24%
# Of African American Residents: 7,526
Percent Change Since 2010: 2.28%
More on Laurinburg: Data | Jobs

Laurinburg is a city in and the county seat of Scotland County, North Carolina, United States. Located in southern North Carolina near the South Carolina border, Laurinburg is southwest of Fayetteville and is home to St. Andrews University. The Laurinburg Institute, a historically African-American school, is also located in Laurinburg. The population at the 2010 Census was 15,962 people.

There You Have It – Black Populations Across North Carolina

If you’re looking for a breakdown of African American populations across North Carolina according to the most recent data, this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious enough, here are the least African American places in North Carolina:

  1. Carolina Beach
  2. Oak Island
  3. Kill Devil Hills

For more North Carolina reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Most African American Cities In North Carolina

Rank City Population % African American
1 Williamston 5,534 66.32%
2 Kinston 21,393 64.82%
3 Wadesboro 5,577 62.83%
4 Rocky Mount 56,175 62.53%
5 Henderson 15,258 62.48%
6 Oxford 8,707 52.74%
7 Elizabeth City 18,025 51.9%
8 Goldsboro 35,924 50.56%
9 Roxboro 8,329 48.95%
10 Laurinburg 15,601 48.24%
11 Wilson 49,558 48.03%
12 Tarboro 11,206 47.75%
13 Clinton 8,799 44.78%
14 Nashville 5,521 43.96%
15 Washington 9,862 43.58%
16 Greensboro 282,177 41.14%
17 Whiteville 5,535 40.78%
18 Fayetteville 203,670 40.75%
19 Selma 6,325 40.6%
20 Dunn 9,762 40.43%
21 Shelby 20,259 39.71%
22 Durham 251,761 39.49%
23 Reidsville 14,107 39.29%
24 Hamlet 6,500 38.35%
25 Greenville 89,745 38.23%
26 Salisbury 33,674 37.84%
27 Lumberton 21,646 37.42%
28 Statesville 25,731 35.33%
29 Roanoke Rapids 15,454 35.2%
30 Charlotte 808,834 34.68%
31 Knightdale 13,787 34.47%
32 Winston-Salem 238,474 34.36%
33 Winterville 9,484 34.29%
34 Rockingham 9,289 34.19%
35 Spring Lake 13,258 33.29%
36 High Point 108,982 32.5%
37 Garner 27,625 32.38%
38 New Bern 30,075 31.38%
39 Forest City 7,356 30.04%
40 Butner 7,692 29.58%
41 Burlington 52,570 29.36%
42 Lexington 19,089 29.14%
43 Raleigh 441,326 28.4%
44 Hope Mills 16,189 27.86%
45 Gastonia 73,877 27.1%
46 Smithfield 11,746 26.91%
47 Hillsborough 6,428 26.48%
48 Sanford 29,048 25.75%
49 Monroe 34,212 25.29%
50 Siler City 8,269 24.83%
51 Mebane 13,592 24.12%
52 Clayton 18,553 23.77%
53 Eden 15,434 23.11%
54 Pineville 8,244 23.02%
55 Kannapolis 45,685 22.44%
56 Wendell 6,298 22.09%
57 Graham 14,506 20.8%
58 Thomasville 27,178 19.72%
59 Albemarle 15,968 19.53%
60 Kings Mountain 11,053 19.02%
61 Concord 85,753 18.8%
62 Aberdeen 7,107 18.76%
63 Havelock 20,630 18.72%
64 Southern Pines 13,258 18.66%
65 Jacksonville 68,404 18.42%
66 Wilmington 113,724 18.04%
67 Harrisburg 14,500 15.96%
68 Fuquay-Varina 22,722 15.9%
69 Lincolnton 10,593 14.78%
70 Mount Holly 14,058 14.29%
71 Wake Forest 36,472 14.26%
72 Kernersville 23,736 13.62%
73 Newton 12,999 13.21%
74 Holly Springs 30,126 12.38%
75 Hickory 40,274 12.19%
76 Bessemer City 5,462 12.18%
77 Asheville 87,531 12.16%
78 Morrisville 22,600 11.85%
79 Asheboro 25,978 11.81%
80 Lenoir 17,956 11.74%
81 Gibsonville 6,759 11.69%
82 Mint Hill 25,024 11.56%
83 Conover 8,263 11.48%
84 Hendersonville 13,548 11.43%
85 Huntersville 51,701 10.84%
86 Matthews 30,054 10.64%
87 Indian Trail 36,357 10.5%
88 Morehead City 9,273 10.0%
89 Mooresville 35,387 9.8%
90 Chapel Hill 59,005 9.72%
91 Morganton 16,717 9.42%
92 Mount Airy 10,364 9.27%
93 Belmont 10,494 9.14%
94 Cherryville 5,901 8.69%
95 Elon 9,781 8.67%
96 Marion 7,873 8.32%
97 Apex 43,893 8.18%
98 Cary 155,822 8.17%
99 Carrboro 20,867 7.96%
100 Waxhaw 12,398 7.94%

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