Waxhaw, North Carolina

The Town

Waxhaw is a town with a population of approximately 12,000 and growing. For better, and for worse, Waxhaw was recently named the fastest-growing suburb of Charlotte, NC. This up-and-coming borough is struggling to make the best use of its green space, and is running into issues preserving its rich history, as it strives to grow its vibrant, family-friendly downtown area.

 

 

Origins

This little train town grew around an old Native American hunting ground. The Waxhaws (who were once called the Wysacky) were a tribe that lived across Mecklenburg and Union Counties in NC, and Lancaster and York Counties in SC. They may have been a branch of the Catawba tribe, but eventually most of the area tribes had to merge to survive, after being primarily wiped out by smallpox, and the Yamasee War of 1715. The townspeople commemorates these tribes at the Museum of the Waxhaws.

The town then became a train hub for a rail line running down to Atlanta. From there, they grew by moving and selling cotton and textiles. They pivoted to antiques, and were (and are still) a destination for antiquing. Learn more here.