Introduction to Fayetteville, North Carolina
The city of Fayetteville is located in the south-central part of North Carolina, about 60 miles south of the state capital of Raleigh. As the county seat of Cumberland County, Fayetteville is probably best known for being the home of the U.S. Army's Fort Bragg, a post from which thousands of elite paratroopers regularly deploy on high-priority missions worldwide. Located about 12 miles northwest of the city, Fort Bragg was originally established as a field artillery base in 1918 and evolved during World War II into a training ground for the nation's Airborne Divisions. Fort Bragg today itself bears many similarities to a city, employing hundreds of thousands and creating an economic impact numbering in the billions annually.
Fayetteville has a regional airport with connection carrier service to nearby southern and eastern cities including Charlotte, Atlanta, and Philadelphia. Several thoroughfares service the city, including Interstates I-95 and I-295; U.S. Routes 13, 301, and 401: and North Carolina State Highways 24, 53, and 87. Nearby communities include Wade (to the northeast), Autryville (to the east), and Hope Mills (to the southwest).
Fayetteville, named after the Revolutionary War hero Marquis de Lafayette, was originally settled in 1739 by Scottish immigrants and created in 1783 by the convergence of two early settlements, Campbellton and Cross Creek. The city served as the North Carolina's capital from 1789-1793 but eventually lost out to Raleigh in its bid to become the permanent state capital. On two occasions in its history, Fayetteville was forced to endure calamities. The Great Fire of 1831 was responsible for the destruction of hundreds of buildings, including the original structure which served for a few years as the State House. During the Civil War, General Sherman's Union troops inflicted destruction on the city, burning the Confederate arsenal. The city was able to rebound from both of these setbacks and preserve many structures which stand today as living reflections of history in Fayetteville's historic districts.
One of the most visited attractions in Fayetteville is also one of its newest. The Airborne and Special Operations Museum is a state-of-the-art educational facility whose exhibits celebrate the courage, honor, and heroism of this unparalleled sector of our armed forces. The 82nd Airborne Division War Memorial Museum houses thousands of artifacts dating back to World War I. Fayetteville's Transportation Museum, which chronicles the story of vehicles and transportation throughout the city's history, is located at the site of the former Cape Fear and Yadkin Valley Railroad Depot. Other points of interest in Fayetteville include the Averasboro Battlefield Museum, the Fascinate-U Children's Museum, the Fayetteville Museum of Art, and the Museum of the Cape Fear Historical Complex. Theaters in town include the Cape Fear Regional Theatre, featuring musicals, dramas, and off-Broadway productions; and the Cameo Theatre, an intimate downtown venue showing classic, independent and foreign films.
Sports teams in Fayetteville include the FireAntz, a minor-league professional ice hockey team which plays in the Southern Professional Hockey League (SPHL); the Fayetteville Guard, a professional indoor football team belonging to the National Indoor Football League (NIFL); and the Fayetteville Swamp Dogs, a baseball team playing in the Coastal Plain League (CPL), a collegiate summer league which features top-notch college players from around the nation. Nearby Raleigh features major-league action in the form of the Carolina Hurricanes of the National Hockey League (NHL) while neighboring Durham has a minor league baseball team, the Durham Bulls, who compete in the International League as the Class Triple-A affiliate of the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.