Mooresville is a town in southern Iredell County, North Carolina, USA. It is in the Metrolina metro area, and is on Lake Norman. The population was 32,711 at the 2010 United States Census. It is located approximately 25 miles north of Charlotte.
Mooresville is best known as the home of many NASCAR racing teams and drivers, along with an IndyCar team and its drivers, as well as racing technology suppliers, which has earned the city the nickname “Race City USA.” Also located in Mooresville is the corporate headquarters of Lowe’s Companies and Universal Technical Institute’s NASCAR Technical Institute.
Mooresville is also a part owner of the cable television entity MI-Connection Communication System along with Davidson and Cornelius.
The area that would develop into the town of Mooresville was originally settled by English, German, and Scot-Irish families who moved into the area from nearby Rowan County, as well as Virginia, Pennsylvania and elsewhere. Many were seeking new lands on which to establish farms. Many of the early families such as the Wilsons, Davidsons, Cowans, Sherrills, Torrances, and others came to the area as early as the mid-1700s. They formed small communities that eventually grew into the community known as Deep Well, which took its name from a large natural well that was found in the area. Many of these families established large farms, primarily of cotton, which grew into small plantations by the 1850s. Major Rufus Reid was considered by far the most successful planter in the area, owning 81 enslaved people on over 2,000 acres of land. His plantation was known as Mount Mourne Plantation, and was named after the Mourne mountains of Scotland. Several other historic plantation homes set in the area as well, such as the elegantJohnson-Neel House, the Cornelius House, Forest Dell Plantation, and the colonial era Belmont Plantation.
In 1856, a railroad was placed on a natural ridge that happened to go through the land of a local farmer by the name of John Franklin Moore. A small scale planter, Moore set up a Depot on his land, and encouraged others to help establish a small village on the location in the late 1850s. The little village, known as Moore’s Siding was born. The Civil War hampered developments however, with the railroads track being removed to aid the Confederate efforts in Virginia. After the war, the tracks were returned, and Moore’s Siding slowly began to prosper. Shortly after the Civil War, John Franklin Moore saw the need to for the village to incorporate into a town. The town was incorporated as Mooresville in 1873. Mr. Moore also helped to establish the first brick making factory in Mooresville, and built some of the first brick buildings on Main Street. Mr. Moore died in 1877 and his wife, Rachel Summrow Moore, continued the development of the town.
In 1883 the railroad lines were run back through the town with the addition of a new depot. The railroad brought growth to the town, which continued to grow with the addition of the first water plant in the early 1890s, the establishment of a library in 1899, a phone company in 1893 and the first of many textile mills in 1900. From textile mills to NASCAR over the years many business and industries have call Mooresville home. One of the more notable was in the area of baseball. Mooresville was once home to a professional minor league baseball. The Mooresville Moors played in the Class D North Carolina State League from 1937–1942. The league ceased operations for two seasons due to World War II but was reorganized in 1945.
Mooresville has also been home to many famous people over the years as well such as Dr. Selma Burke, who created the bust of President Franklin D. Roosevelt for the Four Freedoms plaque on the Recorder of Deed Building in Washington, D.C. It would later be used for the image on the dime, and many others. Mooresville has continued to grow over the years to become a major attraction for sports companies, businesses, the movie industry and many others since its incorporation.
On December 11, 2014, Duke Energy, to repair a rusted, leaking pipe, received approval from North Carolina to dump Coal Ash (containing arsenic, lead and mercury, among other heavy metals) from the Marshall Steam Station into Lake Norman.