Holly springs, nc

Holly Springs, North Carolina, or the Town of Holly Springs is located southwest of Raleigh, NC and southeast of Durham, NC. Holly Springs is located within Wake County. Holly Springs is bordered on the north by the town of Apex and bordered on the south by the town of Fuquay-Varina. The North Carolina General Assembly granted incorporation to Holly Springs January 26, 1877. The original boundaries of Holly Springs were exactly one square mile. The city limits of Holly Springs now encompass 15.1 square miles. The name Holly Springs comes from all the holly trees that once populated the town, and the large number of free-flowing freshwater springs.

It is estimated the first European settlers to the Holly Spring’s area arrived between 1740 to 1750. The first settlement to the area was near the present-day intersection of Avent’s Ferry Road and Cass Holt Road. This settlement had a log schoolhouse, sawmill, cotton gin, general store, and residential structures.    

In around 1800, a settlement sprang up around a crossroads approximately two miles north of the first settlement. One of the roads in the crossroads was running from Hillsborough, NC to Smithfield, NC. The other road was running from Raleigh, NC to the Cape Fear River. Crossing the Cape Fear River at a place that became known as Avent’s Ferry. This settlement at the crossroads is what eventually became Holly Springs.

The first general store or commercial enterprise established at this crossroads was by Richard Jones after 1800. Around 1840, Scottish immigrant Archibald Leslie, who owned a tailor shop at the crossroads, began construction of a home as a gift to his bride. This home eventually became known as the Leslie-Alford-Mims house and was originally constructed on a 180-acre parcel. This house still stands at 100 Avent Ferry Road in Holly Springs. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

In 1860 Holly Springs was a bustling prosperous little village. The village along with homes, consisted of five stores, a Baptist church, a Methodist church, a Masonic lodge, schools, and a male only boarding secondary school, The Holly Springs Academy.

The little village of Holly Springs played a tragic role in the American Civil War. Most of the able-bodied men of Holly Springs and the surrounding area were recruited into the North Carolina 26th Infantry Regiment. At the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863, the third day of the battle, the 26th took part in the assault known as Pickett’s Charge. Of the 880 members of the 26th, only 81 members survived the battle. The NC 26th Infantry Regiment holds the distinction of having the highest casualty rate of any unit, Confederate or Union, during the Battle of Gettysburg.

With the loss of most of the male population in the Civil War, Holly Springs almost ceased to exist. In 1865 as Major General William Tecumseh Sherman’s Union troops moved north into the region, foraging patrols laid waste to everything in their path. They took food, supplies, livestock, and anything of value, and many times burned any structure they encountered. The citizens of Holly Springs and the population of the surrounding area were not spared this foraging and burning.

The economy was untenable in Holly Springs after the American Civil War. The devastating loss of the male population in the war and the economic depression after the war forced many families to move away. In a county survey done around 1871, only 10 buildings of any size are note as being standing in the town. From 1865 up until 1875 Holly Springs was described as “a deserted village.”

This all changed in 1875 with George Benton Alford (July 24, 1845 – April 5, 1924) moving his mercantile business to Holly Springs. He single-handily revived the depressed economy. He purchased the Archibald Leslie house in 1876, and continually making improvements and making additions. He added the east wing around 1877 and the west after the turn of the century. It became one of the largest mansions in Wake County with 31 rooms and its own ballroom.        

In 1877 Alford spearheaded the effort to obtain a charter of incorporation for Holly Springs from the North Carolina General Assembly. During his life, Alford had various business interests including the mercantile store, a sawmill, a cotton gin, a turpentine works, a brick kiln, and newspaper owner. Probably Alford’s greatest accomplishment for Holly Springs was obtaining a railroad charter and eventually having a rail line through town. This rail line drove economic expansion for Holly Springs and the region.

After Alford death, Holly Springs suffered through the Great Depression and World War II. World War II further reduced the population as citizens went off to war and others went to find work in the defense industries. From the U.S. Census in 1890, the population was 218, and in a hundred years only went up to 908 with the 1990 U.S. Census. However, that all changed with the growth in the area, especially with the growth of the Research Triangle Park. In the 2000 U.S. Census, the population increased 912% to 9,192. In the 2010 U.S. Census the population increased 168% to 24,661. The 2019 population estimate was 37,812.

Holly Springs is located in the bottom southwest portion of Wake County. Holly Springs has convenient access via NC 55 and NC 540 to US Interstate 40 and Interstate 440. Distance to adjacent towns:  Raleigh, NC (18 Miles), Durham, NC (29 Miles), Chapel Hill, NC (32 Miles), Research Triangle Park (12) Miles) Charlotte (133 Miles), and Washington, DC (286 Miles).

The most convenient commercial air service for Holly Springs is through Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU). The following airlines currently serve Raleigh-Durham: Air Canada Express, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, American Eagle, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest Airline, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, and United Express. Holly Springs does not have an Amtrak station, however Cary, NC has a station with regular service.

The Holly Springs educational systems are well rated from primary and secondary. There is public, charter, and private schools within Holly Springs.

Pine Springs Preparatory Academy – Public charter schools

Holly Grove Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Ridge Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Springs Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Oakview Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Ridge Middle School – Wake County Public School

Holly Grove Middle School – Wake County Public School

Holly Springs High School – Wake County Public School

The New School Montessori Center – Private

Primrose School at Holly Grove – Private

There are 11 top ranked colleges or universities in the Holly Springs area with the majority having sports programs.

Parks and Recreation Facilities in Holly Springs:

-Bass Lake Park

-Greenways

-Jones Park

-North Main Athletic Complex

-Parrish Womble Park

-Sugg Farm Park

-W.E. Hunt Recreation Center

The Holly Springs Salamanders, a collegiate summer baseball team in the Coastal Plain League, calls Holly Springs home.

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holly springs, nc

Holly Springs, North Carolina, or the Town of Holly Springs is located southwest of Raleigh, NC and southeast of Durham, NC. Holly Springs is located within Wake County. Holly Springs is bordered on the north by the town of Apex and bordered on the south by the town of Fuquay-Varina. The North Carolina General Assembly granted incorporation to Holly Springs January 26, 1877. The original boundaries of Holly Springs were exactly one square mile. The city limits of Holly Springs now encompass 15.1 square miles. The name Holly Springs comes from all the holly trees that once populated the town, and the large number of free-flowing freshwater springs.

It is estimated the first European settlers to the Holly Spring’s area arrived between 1740 to 1750. The first settlement to the area was near the present-day intersection of Avent’s Ferry Road and Cass Holt Road. This settlement had a log schoolhouse, sawmill, cotton gin, general store, and residential structures.    

In around 1800, a settlement sprang up around a crossroads approximately two miles north of the first settlement. One of the roads in the crossroads was running from Hillsborough, NC to Smithfield, NC. The other road was running from Raleigh, NC to the Cape Fear River. Crossing the Cape Fear River at a place that became known as Avent’s Ferry. This settlement at the crossroads is what eventually became Holly Springs.

The first general store or commercial enterprise established at this crossroads was by Richard Jones after 1800. Around 1840, Scottish immigrant Archibald Leslie, who owned a tailor shop at the crossroads, began construction of a home as a gift to his bride. This home eventually became known as the Leslie-Alford-Mims house and was originally constructed on a 180-acre parcel. This house still stands at 100 Avent Ferry Road in Holly Springs. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

In 1860 Holly Springs was a bustling prosperous little village. The village along with homes, consisted of five stores, a Baptist church, a Methodist church, a Masonic lodge, schools, and a male only boarding secondary school, The Holly Springs Academy.

The little village of Holly Springs played a tragic role in the American Civil War. Most of the able-bodied men of Holly Springs and the surrounding area were recruited into the North Carolina 26th Infantry Regiment. At the Battle of Gettysburg on July 3, 1863, the third day of the battle, the 26th took part in the assault known as Pickett’s Charge. Of the 880 members of the 26th, only 81 members survived the battle. The NC 26th Infantry Regiment holds the distinction of having the highest casualty rate of any unit, Confederate or Union, during the Battle of Gettysburg.

With the loss of most of the male population in the Civil War, Holly Springs almost ceased to exist. In 1865 as Major General William Tecumseh Sherman’s Union troops moved north into the region, foraging patrols laid waste to everything in their path. They took food, supplies, livestock, and anything of value, and many times burned any structure they encountered. The citizens of Holly Springs and the population of the surrounding area were not spared this foraging and burning.

The economy was untenable in Holly Springs after the American Civil War. The devastating loss of the male population in the war and the economic depression after the war forced many families to move away. In a county survey done around 1871, only 10 buildings of any size are note as being standing in the town. From 1865 up until 1875 Holly Springs was described as “a deserted village.”

This all changed in 1875 with George Benton Alford (July 24, 1845 – April 5, 1924) moving his mercantile business to Holly Springs. He single-handily revived the depressed economy. He purchased the Archibald Leslie house in 1876, and continually making improvements and making additions. He added the east wing around 1877 and the west after the turn of the century. It became one of the largest mansions in Wake County with 31 rooms and its own ballroom.        

In 1877 Alford spearheaded the effort to obtain a charter of incorporation for Holly Springs from the North Carolina General Assembly. During his life, Alford had various business interests including the mercantile store, a sawmill, a cotton gin, a turpentine works, a brick kiln, and newspaper owner. Probably Alford’s greatest accomplishment for Holly Springs was obtaining a railroad charter and eventually having a rail line through town. This rail line drove economic expansion for Holly Springs and the region.

After Alford death, Holly Springs suffered through the Great Depression and World War II. World War II further reduced the population as citizens went off to war and others went to find work in the defense industries. From the U.S. Census in 1890, the population was 218, and in a hundred years only went up to 908 with the 1990 U.S. Census. However, that all changed with the growth in the area, especially with the growth of the Research Triangle Park. In the 2000 U.S. Census, the population increased 912% to 9,192. In the 2010 U.S. Census the population increased 168% to 24,661. The 2019 population estimate was 37,812.

Holly Springs is located in the bottom southwest portion of Wake County. Holly Springs has convenient access via NC 55 and NC 540 to US Interstate 40 and Interstate 440. Distance to adjacent towns:  Raleigh, NC (18 Miles), Durham, NC (29 Miles), Chapel Hill, NC (32 Miles), Research Triangle Park (12) Miles) Charlotte (133 Miles), and Washington, DC (286 Miles).

The most convenient commercial air service for Holly Springs is through Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU). The following airlines currently serve Raleigh-Durham: Air Canada Express, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, American Eagle, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Frontier Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest Airline, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, and United Express. Holly Springs does not have an Amtrak station, however Cary, NC has a station with regular service.

The Holly Springs educational systems are well rated from primary and secondary. There is public, charter, and private schools within Holly Springs.

Pine Springs Preparatory Academy – Public charter schools

Holly Grove Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Ridge Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Springs Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Oakview Elementary School – Wake County Public School

Holly Ridge Middle School – Wake County Public School

Holly Grove Middle School – Wake County Public School

Holly Springs High School – Wake County Public School

The New School Montessori Center – Private

Primrose School at Holly Grove – Private

There are 11 top ranked colleges or universities in the Holly Springs area with the majority having sports programs.

Parks and Recreation Facilities in Holly Springs:

-Bass Lake Park

-Greenways

-Jones Park

-North Main Athletic Complex

-Parrish Womble Park

-Sugg Farm Park

-W.E. Hunt Recreation Center

The Holly Springs Salamanders, a collegiate summer baseball team in the Coastal Plain League, calls Holly Springs home.

Need Association Management?

Contact Us