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North Carolina (/ˌkærəˈlnə/ (About this soundlisten)) is a state located in the southeastern region of the United States. North Carolina is the 28th largest and 9th-most populous of the 50 United States. It is bordered by Virginia to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the east, Georgia and South Carolina to the south, and Tennessee to the west. Raleigh is the state's capital and Charlotte is its largest city. The Charlotte metropolitan area, with an estimated population of 2,569,213 in 2018, is the most populous metropolitan area in North Carolina, the 23rd-most populous in the United States, and the largest banking center in the nation after New York City. North Carolina's second largest metropolitan area is the Raleigh metropolitan area, with an estimated population of 1,337,331 in 2018, and is home to the largest research park in the United States, Research Triangle Park, in Chapel Hill, Durham, and Raleigh.

North Carolina was established as a royal colony in 1729 and is one of the original Thirteen Colonies. North Carolina is named in honor of King Charles I of England who first formed the English colony, with Carolus being Latin for "Charles". On November 21, 1789, North Carolina became the 12th state to ratify the United States Constitution. North Carolina declared its secession from the Union on May 20, 1861, becoming the last of eleven states to join the Confederate States. Following the Civil War, the state was restored to the Union on June 25, 1868. On December 17, 1903, Orville and Wilbur Wright successfully piloted the world's first controlled, sustained flight of a powered, heavier-than-air aircraft at Kill Devil Hills in North Carolina's Outer Banks. North Carolina uses the slogan "First in Flight" on state license plates to commemorate this achievement.

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Fort Dobbs was an 18th-century fort in the Yadkin–Pee Dee River Basin region of the Province of North Carolina, near what is now Statesville in Iredell County. Used for frontier defense during and after the French and Indian War, the fort was built to protect the British settlers of the western portion of what was then Rowan County from Cherokee, Catawba, Shawnee, Delaware and French raids into North Carolina. The fort's name honored Arthur Dobbs, the colonial Governor of North Carolina from 1754 to 1765. When in use, it was the only fort on the frontier between South Carolina and Virginia. On February 27, 1760, the fort was the site of an engagement between Cherokee warriors and provincial militia that ended in a victory for the militia. Fort Dobbs was abandoned after 1766, but archaeological work in the 20th century and historical research in 2005 and 2006 led to the discovery of the fort's exact location and probable appearance. The site on which the fort sat is now operated by North Carolina's Division of State Historic Sites and Properties as Fort Dobbs State Historic Site, and supporters of the site have developed plans for the fort's reconstruction.

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Solar eclipse of August 21, 2017 viewed from Cullowhee, North Carolina.
Photo credit: Vince Reinhart
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