is a city
located in New Hanover County
in the state
of North Carolina
in the United States
. See http://www.ci.wilmington.nc.us/.
The town of Newton
was founded in 1720 and in 1739 changed its name to Wilmington
because of Spencer Compton
, the Earl of Wilmington
and a patron
of the governor
. Early on, the easily accessible pine trees
in the area provided much of the city's commerce: tar
, and turpentine
were all necessary for trans-Atlantic
After the Revolutionary War, Wilmington continued to prosper, growing to a population of 5000 and becoming the largest city in North Carolina.
During the Civil War, Wilmington was one of the Confederacy's most important seaports. Because of the river and the coastline, the area was particularly difficult for the Union to blockade. Fort Fisher was built along the coast near the river mouth to keep blockade ships at bay so that blockade runners could escape the blockade. Although Wilmington was the last port to remain open to the Confederacy, ultimately Fort Fisher was destroyed and the port closed. The influences of this period can be seen all over the Wilmington area, from the ruins of Fort Fisher at the cape to the Blockade Runner hotel in Wrightsville Beach.
After the war, Wilmington had the expected social and economic problems. With the invention of iron ships, one of the city's major products was no longer needed. The largest remaining export of the area was cotton.
In World War II, the area again played a significant role. A huge military and construction facility was set up, and many ships were built.
After this war, Wilmington took a strong downturn when most industry left. Things hit bottom in the 1970's before redevelopment was done and new industries moved in.