Population of Counties in North Carolina (2020)

Location of the Wright brothers' first powered air flight and a stunning landscape that offers the tranquility of the mountains and beautiful beaches, North Carolina’s population has been increasing steadily over the last 8 years. Since 2010, more than half of North Carolina’s 100 counties has experienced a growth in population – 53 to be exact.

North Carolina Counties with Positive Population Growth

In 2018, Mecklenburg County has the largest population with 1,076,837, closely followed by Wake County which has a population of 1,072,203 experiencing an increase of 17.1% and 19% since 2010, respectively.

North Carolina Counties with Rapid Growth

These are by no means the highest surge in numbers. Brunswick County has a fairly small population in comparison at 130,897 but grew by 21.8% Smaller counties that are similar to Brunswick have experienced significant population growth as well. Durham County’s population has grown by 15.4%, Union County by 14.47%, Carrabus County by 16.27% and Johnston County by 15.93%

North Carolina Counties with Negative Population Growth

47 counties decreased in population but by less than 10%. The largest drop in numbers was experienced in Northampton and Bertie with 9.86% and 9.53%

More information on North Carolina’s population numbers is available in the table below.

Name 2020 Population Growth Since 2010
Wake County1,133,14024.95%
Mecklenburg County1,127,08022.08%
Guilford County542,01810.71%
Forsyth County385,8499.81%
Cumberland County334,5122.24%
Durham County326,44120.30%
Buncombe County262,93910.14%
Union County244,87621.16%
New Hanover County239,50817.82%
Gaston County228,90011.06%
Cabarrus County220,57823.55%
Johnston County215,17926.81%
Onslow County203,3738.82%
Iredell County184,04915.20%
Pitt County182,5088.09%
Alamance County172,25013.74%
Davidson County169,2163.90%
Catawba County160,3343.60%
Orange County150,16112.07%
Brunswick County148,76237.66%
Randolph County143,7551.25%
Rowan County142,7123.14%
Harnett County138,18419.39%
Robeson County130,313-3.11%
Wayne County123,2300.27%
Henderson County119,33011.64%
Craven County103,228-0.91%
Moore County101,58214.67%
Cleveland County98,4790.57%
Nash County94,024-1.84%
Burke County90,8920.35%
Rockingham County90,388-3.49%
Lincoln County86,58010.85%
Caldwell County82,247-0.93%
Wilson County81,231-0.07%
Chatham County76,92120.49%
Surry County71,608-2.93%
Carteret County70,7346.05%
Franklin County70,61416.11%
Wilkes County68,743-0.76%
Rutherford County67,342-0.58%
Pender County64,95023.91%
Sampson County64,0120.75%
Haywood County63,8418.32%
Stanly County63,3234.53%
Lee County63,2229.22%
Granville County61,5976.82%
Duplin County58,8440.33%
Watauga County57,65913.13%
Hoke County56,01017.93%
Columbus County54,991-5.15%
Lenoir County54,646-8.15%
Edgecombe County50,501-10.82%
Halifax County49,158-9.76%
Beaufort County47,135-1.41%
McDowell County46,1932.43%
Vance County45,122-0.40%
Richmond County45,011-3.48%
Stokes County45,007-4.95%
Jackson County43,5978.03%
Davie County43,4615.35%
Pasquotank County39,965-1.63%
Person County39,7310.81%
Alexander County37,7671.43%
Yadkin County37,343-2.84%
Dare County37,2739.68%
Macon County36,6077.80%
Transylvania County34,9955.77%
Scotland County34,086-5.48%
Bladen County32,634-7.27%
Cherokee County29,1896.41%
Currituck County28,57020.68%
Ashe County27,7211.81%
Montgomery County27,119-2.21%
Anson County24,875-7.36%
Hertford County23,125-6.61%
Caswell County22,830-3.89%
Martin County22,461-8.33%
Madison County22,1356.53%
Greene County21,076-0.86%
Polk County20,7971.54%
Warren County19,683-6.19%
Northampton County19,202-12.87%
Bertie County18,530-12.78%
Yancey County18,2852.69%
Avery County17,505-1.46%
Mitchell County15,042-3.00%
Swain County14,2031.37%
Chowan County14,007-4.95%
Perquimans County13,346-1.00%
Pamlico County12,702-3.11%
Gates County11,689-3.91%
Washington County11,539-12.15%
Alleghany County11,4372.68%
Clay County11,4157.62%
Camden County11,0089.98%
Jones County9,707-4.30%
Graham County8,384-5.48%
Hyde County5,156-11.27%
Tyrrell County4,027-8.79%