Fayetteville is a city located in Cumberland County North Carolina. Fayetteville has a 2023 population of 209,182. It is also the county seat of Cumberland County.Fayetteville is currently growing at a rate of 0.1% annually and its population has increased by 0.29% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 208,576 in 2020.
The average household income in Fayetteville is $64,073 with a poverty rate of 19.07%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to - per month, and the median house value is -. The median age in Fayetteville is 30.3 years, 28.2 years for males, and 32.9 years for females.
Fayetteville serves as the county seat for Cumberland County. This award-winning city is most known for being the home of Fort Bragg. It is the largest city by population in the southeastern region of the state.
Fort Bragg and Pope Field drive Fayetteville’s economy, bringing in about $4.5 billion annually. The city is also a hub in the region for health care, entertainment, services, lodging, and shops. Fayetteville has a meager unemployment rate. Fort Bragg is the city’s largest employer, providing jobs to over 15,000 people. Other top employers in Fayetteville include the Cumberland County Public School System, Cape Fear Valley Health System, Wal-Mart and Good Year Tire.
The city has seen impressive population growth throughout the years. Despite some drops in population during the 1800s, the 1900s and 2000s have brought nothing but growth. The city passed 50,000 residents by the time of the 1970 census. This number had risen significantly in 1990, with the population showing over 75,000 residents. The 2000 census reflected even more growth, pushing the total population count past 121,000. The annexation of Fort Bragg contributed to a significant increase by the next census, which recorded more than 200,000 living in Fayetteville. Recent estimates show that the population boom has dropped off a bit, growing just 2.1% since the last census in 2010. However, the low unemployment rates, Fort Bragg and other employment opportunities, and the revitalization of Fayetteville are sure to help continue to boost these rates into the future.
Before the city of Fayetteville was settled by Europeans, it was first inhabited by many tribes, including the Shakori, Waccamaw and Eno tribes – to name a few. Prior even to this, other indigenous people occupied the land for over 12,000 years.
Settlement in the area around the Cape Fear River was encouraged following the Tuscarora and Yamasee Wars. Scots were the first Europeans to settle the area. They created two settlements – Cross Creek and Campbellton. In 1783, the two settlements were unified and given the name Fayetteville.
The 1780s brought much activity to Fayetteville. It was here where the US Constitution was ratified. The first church was built in the late 1700s by Henry Evans. By 1820, about 3,500 residents were living in Fayetteville. While this was a large number, it still trailed behind Wilmington. Fayetteville had a setback in 1831 with a “Great Fire” that destroyed homes, businesses and public buildings. The leaders of Fayetteville reacted quickly to rebuild the city.
In 1865, Fayetteville was attacked during the civil war. Foundries and factories were destroyed during this attack. During World War II, Fort Brag became the site of the Field Artillery and served as a base to approximately 5,000 soldiers. It was in 2008 when the city of Fayetteville annexed most of Fort Bragg, which significantly increased its population.
In the 20th century was when Fayetteville’s population began to grow. Cumberland County’s population soared by 43%. As the city’s population continued to grow, so did the city itself with the construction of new suburban homes, shopping centers, and other structures.
Today, the city is working on multiple revitalization projects throughout the city, particularly its downtown area. It continues to bring in visitors and residents with the addition of parks, museums, retail shops, and other attractions. The city is home to many large companies including Wal-Mart and General Dynamics. The city itself continues to grow, as do the surrounding suburban areas.
According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Fayetteville was:
Black or African American
Two or more races
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
Average Family Size
Average Household Size
Rate of Home Ownership
Less Than 9th Grade
9th to 12th Grade
High School Graduate
High School Graduation Rate
The highest rate of high school graduation is among black people with a rate of 74.52%.
The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 34.8%.
Other Indo-European Languages
Asian and Pacific Island Languages
86.13% of Fayetteville residents speak only English, while 13.87% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 8.42% of the population.
Overall Poverty Rate
Male Poverty Rate
Female Poverty Rate
The race most likely to be in poverty in Fayetteville is Multiple, with 31.61% below the poverty level.
The race least likely to be in poverty in Fayetteville is White, with 12.92% below the poverty level.
The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 4.63%. Among those working part-time, it was 24.06%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 27.91%.
Overall Marriage Rate
Male Marriage Rate
Female Marriage Rate
The age group where males are most likely to be married is Over 65, while the female age group most likely to be married is 55-64.
Second Gulf War
First Gulf War
World War II
Less Than 9th Grade
High School Graduate
Bachelors or Greater
Veteran Poverty Rate
Veteran Disability Rate
Labor Force Participation
Non citizens include legal permanent residents (green card holders), international students, temporary workers, humanitarian migrants, and illegal immigrants.
Born in Fayetteville
92.08% of Fayetteville residents were born in the United States, with 40.94% having been born in North Carolina. 3.45% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.