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About Rutherford County
Nestled in the foothills of Western North Carolina, Rutherford County boasts breathtaking views of rolling mountains in a rural setting complete with abundant open space, natural forests, lakes and farm land. North Carolina’s Rutherford County was formed in 1779 and is currently comprised of eight municipalities: Bostic, Chimney Rock, Ellenboro, Forest City, Rutherfordton, Ruth, Spindale and Lake Lure. The town of Rutherfordton holds the county seat. Chimney Rock and Lake Lure are located approximately 20 miles west of Rutherfordton, with Lake Lure being home to a private lake with public access that is enjoyed by thousands from spring until fall. Rutherford County is close in proximity to the metropolitan areas of Asheville, Charlotte, Greenville (SC), and Spartanburg (SC) as well as several major highway corridors.
OUR MANUFACTURING TRADITION
In 1874, Rutherford County’s first textile mill opened near the community of Henrietta. Unfortunately, the mill, which manufactured cotton yarn, only operated for a short time before burning down the same year. In 1885, R.R. Haynes and S.B. Tanner built a cotton mill in Henrietta, along with a village consisting of homes for workers, a school, and company store. Other textile mills and villages began operations in the neighboring communities of Avondale and Cliffside, as well as the nearby towns of Forest City, Spindale, Rutherfordton and Ruth. Textiles remained an important economic force in the county well into the 21st century. When textile, sewing operations and furniture industries shifted to mainly overseas operations, the county looked to redefine itself and diversified its industry base. Today, Rutherford County’s target industry sectors include Automotive Suppliers, Advanced Materials, Data Centers, and Call Centers.
Economic Development Strategic Plan - Full Report May 2013