Union County


Formed in 1842 from Mecklenburg and Anson counties, Union County received its name in an act of bipartisanship between the Democrats and the Whigs, who were unable to agree on a county namesake. Democrats were intent on naming the county after Andrew Jackson, whom some believe was born in Union County in the George McCamie cabin (others contend Jackson was born in Crawford Plantation, SC). Conversely, the Whigs wanted to name the county after Henry Clay. The parties chose Union in compromise. The county seat of Monroe also has presidential ties, named after James Monroe.

During the 19th and 20th centuries, Union’s economy was predominantly derived from agriculture and manufacturing. Today, Union is one of the state’s fastest-growing exurban commuter counties due to its close proximity to Charlotte coupled with its small and historical town feel against the backdrop of vast farmlands and valleys. In the last decade, Union’s population has increased by 24%.

Founded in 1895, Union is home to Wingate University. The late US Senator Jesse Helms also attended Wingate for a year, which was then called Wingate Junior College, before transferring to Wake Forest University. In 1994, Helms denied the requests of multiple Ivy League universities to house his papers, instead opting for Wingate as a repository for his political writings and correspondences. The Jesse Helms Center remains on campus today.

From 1965 to 2006, Waxhaw was home to “Listen and Remember,” an outdoor play recounting the formation of the Waxhaw’s colonial settlement by Scottish and Irish immigrants. The Waxhaw Scottish Games, part of the NC Highland Games series, was founded in 1979 by individuals then involved in the outdoor drama production. The games are held every year on the last weekend in October.

Despite bordering the Democratic stronghold Mecklenburg, Union has remained a solidly Republican county. In the last three elections, Republican statewide candidates have comfortably received more than 60%.


County Seat: Monroe
Biggest Cities:
  • Monroe
  • Indian Trails
  • Stallings
  • Weddington
  • Waxhaw
  • Wesley Chapel
  • Wingate
  • Unionville
  • Marvin
Media Market: Charlotte

Elected Officials

County Data