Welcome to Henderson County NCGenWeb

Henderson County was formed in 1838 from a portion of Buncombe County and named for Leonard Henderson who was Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court from 1829 to 1833.  Polk County was formed from part of Henderson and Rutherford Counties in 1855 and Transylvania County was formed from part of Henderson and Jackson Counties in 1861.
A bill to establish the county was introduced in the State legislature by Representatives Montaville Patton and Phillip Brittain and State Senator John Clayton.(1)
Eleven Commissioners were appointed to establish the county seat.  They were John Clayton, Esquire, Colonel Sam Chunn, Captain Robert Jones, Reuben Deaver,  John Yount, Asa Edney,  Richard Allen, John Miller, Benjamin Wilson, Ephroditus Hightower and John Jarret, Sr. (1)
The area which was to become Henderson County was first settled as early as 1779 by pioneers from Rutherford County NC and upper South Carolina.  One of the oldest recorded references is a warrant to survey for Abraham Kuykendall of Rutherford County which reads:
“North Carolina No 113.  David Miller Entry offers of claim for land in the county of Rutherford to the surveyor of said county.  You are hereby ______ and required as soon as may be to ___ of survey for Eabram Corkindall a tract or parcel of land containing 300 acres in the county aforesaid lying on Mud Creek River joining Eabram Corkindalls and David Miller Land for Compliment this 20 Day of Oct 1779.”  Mud Creek lies in present day Henderson County.  The entry predates the formation of Buncombe Co in 1792 and was therefore recorded in Rutherford County NC.
(1) From The Banks of The Oklawaha   Vol. 1,  pg 66-67 Frank L. FitzSimmons Golden Glow Publishing Co 1976

Parent Counties:

Henderson 1838  (from Buncombe)         Buncombe  1791  (from Burke and Rutherford)          Burke  1777 ( from Rowan)    ∫      Rutherford  1779 (from Tryon)          Tryon  1768 (now extinct,  from Mecklenburg)    ∫      Rowan  1753  (from Mecklenburg)     ∫      Mecklenburg  1763 (from Anson)          Anson 1750  (from Bladen)     ∫      Bladen 1734 (from New Hanover)     ∫      New Hanover 1729  (from Craven)           Craven  1705  (from Bath)

For North Carolina formation of Counties , go to:   NC  State Department of Archives


Adjacent Counties:

Buncombe  –  Parent county of Henderson

Online deed images and index to deeds for Buncombe County:   Buncombe County Register of Deeds  Some deeds after 1870’s until recently have not been scanned yet

Polk     ∫     Rutherford     ∫     Transylvania     ∫     Greenville (SC)


Nearby counties:








Adjacent States


South Carolina




If you have questions or issues with this website contact:

Kathy Summers   ksummers@me.com

 Ann Propst  – annsid@citcom.net


Research tips:

The 1850 Henderson County Federal Census is missing around 1000 names. If you can’t find your ancestor on this census it may be because of a mistake.  The census takers recorded the data and sent it to Raleigh.  This is the “State Copy.” This copy was hand copied and the COPY sent to the federal government.  That is the “Federal Copy.”  The Federal Copy was not transcribed correctly and is missing somewhere around 1000 names.  The State Copy is complete.  If you have not found your ancestor on the Federal Census and you know they should be in Henderson County, this is probably the reason. Lois Dorsey transcribed the State Copy.  If you would like lookups email ksummers@me.com

Where did Asheville Go?   1920 Buncombe County Census mistakenly filed with BRUNSWICK County. A large portion, if not all, of Buncombe County’s 1920 Census has been misfiled as Brunswick County.  If you can’t find your ancestor in Buncombe 1920, try Brunswick Co.

Online searches and spelling variations: Tired of trying to figure out all the ways “Cagle” could be spelled?  If you think you know which county and state your ancestor lived in try searching for just the given name.  ie – Henderson Co NC – “John” and search.  This will bring up all the people named “John” and you can go through the list looking for the misspelled name – “Kaggel” and “Cagel.”


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