Reidsville, North Carolina
—  City  —
Location of Reidsville, North Carolina
Coordinates: 36°20′43″N 79°40′30″W / 36.34528, -79.675Coordinates: 36°20′43″N 79°40′30″W / 36.34528, -79.675
Country United States
State North Carolina
County Rockingham
 • Total 14.9 sq mi (38.6 km2)
 • Land 13.4 sq mi (34.6 km2)
 • Water 1.5 sq mi (3.9 km2)
Elevation 830 ft (253 m)
Population (2000)
 • Total 14,485
 • Density 1,083.1/sq mi (418.2/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP codes 27320-27323
Area code(s) 336
FIPS code 37-55900[1]
GNIS feature ID 1022217[2]

Reidsville is a city located in Rockingham County, North Carolina. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 14,485.

Originally established in the early 19th century as an outpost and stop on the stage line that ran between Salisbury, NC and Danville, VA called Wrights Crossroads, the Reidsville community grew from a single home and Inn owned by the family of Reuben Reid (a local farmer, businessman, and justice of the peace who was the father of David S. Reid) into a thriving farming community primarily supporting tobacco production and cigarette manufacturing. Reidsville was officially incorporated by the North Carolina State Legislature in 1873 and became a key location of the American Tobacco Company which employed large numbers of city and county residents. The American Tobacco Company was the mainstay of Reidsville economics until its sale and closure in 1994. Many textile mills were established in Reidsville as well, with Cone Mills and Burlington Industries consolidating most of them in the mid-20th century, though most have now closed. Although Reidsville has experienced economic recession in recent years the community has enjoyed a renewal of growth as a sleeper city supplying a source of rural development for the surrounding larger cities.


Reidsville is located at 36°20'43" North, 79°40'30" West (36.345347, -79.675094)[3].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.9 square miles (38.6 km²), of which, 13.4 square miles (34.6 km²) of it is land and 1.5 square miles (3.9 km²) of it is water. The total area is 10.14% water.


The early roots of Reidsville, incorporated in 1873 by the State Legislature, date back to the early 19th century when William Wright of the Little Troublesome Creek area owned a tavern and store on the road connecting Danville, Va. and Salem. This outpost, called Wright’s Cross Roads, was the earliest settlement in the present-day city and was overseen by Wright’s son, Nathan, and then Nathan Wright’s son-in-law, Robert Payne Richardson. Richardson’s home, built in 1842 on a knoll overlooking Little Troublesome Creek, still remains on Richardson Drive and has the distinction of being the oldest standing house in the city.

Reuben Reid of the Hogan’s Creek area would move his family, including wife, Elizabeth Williams Settle, and son, David Settle Reid, to a 700-acre (2.8 km2) farm on the ridge between Wolf Island and Little Troublesome creeks in May, 1814. Reuben Reid became a successful farmer, operated a store and a public inn maintained in a private home and served the county as a constable and justice of the peace. When the family secured a post office, aptly named Reidsville, in 1829, 16-year-old David Reid was appointed its first postmaster. He would later become a State Senator (1835–42), a U.S. Congressman (1843–47), Governor of North Carolina (1850) and a U.S. Senator (1854).

On Nov. 26, 1858, William Lindsey of Pittsylvania County, Va., was high bidder for a 384-acre (1.554 km2) tract of land known as Reidsville. He and his bride, Sarah Holderby, a daughter of Joseph Holderby of the northern part of the county, moved into the frame house Reuben Reid had built across from his store. It is now a landmark in Reidsville, the first frame house built in the village.

Reidsville is located near the center of Rockingham County. The Southern Railroad passes through the center of the city from north to south. The town was incorporated in 1873 by the Legislature. Tobacco was a mainstay of the local economy for many years, with the history of the city tightly woven with that of American Tobacco Company. With the sale of American Tobacco in 1994, city leaders have diversified the local economy and established Reidsville as a city that lives up to its motto, "Focused on a better tomorrow." The Reidsville Chamber of Commerce, established in 1923 by business leaders in the community, is now located downtown.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 14,485 people, 6,013 households, and 3,902 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,083.1 people per square mile (418.3/km²). There were 6,477 housing units at an average density of 484.3 per square mile (187.0/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 57.02% White, 39.52% African American, 0.21% Native American, 0.64% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 1.35% from other races, and 1.19% from two or more races. 2.63% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

There were 6,013 households out of which 27.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.7% were married couples living together, 18.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 35.1% were non-families. 31.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 14.4% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.34 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the city the population was spread out with 23.4% under the age of 18, 6.8% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 23.0% from 45 to 64, and 18.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 84.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 78.0 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $31,040, and the median income for a family was $37,553. Males had a median income of $30,745 versus $21,991 for females. The per capita income for the city was $17,414. 15.1% of the population and 11.6% of families were below the poverty line. 23.9% of those under the age of 18 and 14.7% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.

Economic development[]

Downtown Area[]

The downtown area of Reidsville was like many of its counterparts across the state in the 1970s, seeing a decline in business opportunities due to the emergence of malls and shopping centers. The Reidsville Downtown Corporation, a nonprofit organization financed by monies from the Downtown District Tax, was created in 1976 to lead the charge to revitalize the downtown.

Joint projects of the Downtown Corporation and the City of Reidsville have been participation in the Main Street Program, the Streetscape Program and Façade Incentive Grant program. Each of these programs was initiated to aid in the revitalization of the downtown and improve the area aesthetically.

New Construction[]

Market Square[]

Reidsville NC Market Square

Reidsville's newest outdoor venue had its grand opening, on Saturday August 22, 2009. It is located at 303 S. Scales St. Reidsville, NC 27320

Regional and National Awards[]

  • All-America City Award- 2008

Notable residents[]

  • Scott Bankhead, Olympic athlete and former Major League Baseball player
  • Na Brown, graduated from Reidsville High, played for UNC and Philadelphia Eagles
  • Nelson Cole, NC State Representative.
  • Jim Duncan, former football player and coach. He was an All-Southern Conference player at Wake Forest University from 1947-1949 and was the Team MVP in 1949. He was also a Linebacker and defensive end for New York Giants from 1950–1955. He was the head football coach at Appalachian State from 1960–1964 and with the Calgary Stampeders of Canadian Football League from 1969–1973. [4]
  • Mike Goodes - Professional Golfer on the PGA Champions Tour
  • Dr. Frederick Robert Klenner made his mark in medicine with the use of Vitamin C as an Antibiotic. (1907-1984)
  • David Settle Reid, born in Reidsville, North Carolina (April 19, 1813 – June 19, 1891) was a two-term Democratic governor of the U.S. state of North Carolina from 1851 to 1854 and a U.S. Senator from December 1854 to March 1859. His uncle was Congressman Thomas Settle.
  • Tony Rice - bluegrass musician
  • R. Stephen Ritchie, the only Air Force pilot ace of the Vietnam War. [5] He ran unsuccessfully to represent the area in Congress in 1974.
  • John Settle, NFL player, running backs coach of the Wisconsin Badgers.
  • Susie Marshall Sharp (July 7,1907March 1,1996) was an American jurist who served as the first female Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. She was not the first woman to head the highest court in a U.S. state, but is believed to be the first woman elected to such a post in a state, like North Carolina, in which the position is elected by the people separately from that of Associate Justice. In 1965, Lorna E. Lockwood became the first chief justice of a state supreme court, but in Arizona, the Supreme Court justices elect their chief justice.
  • Jerome Simpson, wide receiver for the Cincinnati Bengals.
  • Tripp Welborne - safety for the Michigan Wolverines and the Minnesota Vikings.
  • Bill Lindsey - Retired major league baseball catcher Chicago White Sox and New York Yankees


External links[]

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Reidsville, North Carolina. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.