Hendersonville, North Carolina, is the county seat in Henderson County. The city and the county were both named for 19th century North Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Leonard Henderson. Hendersonville was founded in 1838 and now has a (2009 estimated) population of 11,382. Both the city of Hendersonville and Henderson County make up part of the four-county Asheville Metropolitan Statistical Area, North Carolina’s fifth-largest MSA, and the overall hub of western North Carolina since 2000. Hendersonville is 22 miles southeast of Asheville, NC, in the beautiful southern mountains of western North Carolina along the Eastern Escarpment. Served by north-south Interstate 26, Hendersonville has easy access to Asheville and a direct route to Charleston, South Carolina.
Hendersonville’s architecture reflects the late 19th and early 20th centuries with a number of historic neighborhoods existing outside the Main Street corridor, including the 5th Avenue neighborhood on the city’s west side and the Druid Hills neighborhood north of downtown. The architectural focus of the downtown area is the Historic Henderson County Courthouse, completed in 1905 and completely renovated in 2008. Redevelopment efforts are under way in areas located along Hendersonville’s east side, including the historic commercial district along 7th Avenue East. The city of Hendersonville, NC, is also home to the newly-restored City Hall, built in 1924, and the modern Henderson County Courthouse complex, completed in 1995.
Around 1980, many larger chain stores began locating almost entirely along the commercial district strips extending outward from the downtown area along U.S. Hwy. 64 East, U.S. Hwy. 176 and U.S. Hwy. 25. Since the early 1990s, downtown revitalization has occurred near Hendersonville’s well-preserved Main Street, with the opening of new restaurants, antique shops and boutiques. The foothills region surrounding Hendersonville contains many small towns that often developed around a single industry such as furniture or textiles. As these industries steadily moved to low-wage markets in Asia and Latin America over the last quarter-century, the foothills towns that depended upon them are developing a new economy based on tourism and catering to affluent retirees who have settled in the region. The timber industry is still a major economic sector for export and local manufacturing.
The annual North Carolina Apple Festival, held on Main Street in Hendersonville, has been western North Carolina’s premier family festival for over 60 years. Held annually over the four-day Labor Day weekend, the festival culminates in the Apple Parade that regularly draws up to 50,000 spectators. A quality attraction that fits the in-development tourist landscape is the Mineral & Lapidary Museum of Henderson County. The famous Hendersonville Meteorite was found nearby in 1901 by William Corn.
The Henderson County District Court is in NC’s 29th Judicial District, 29B, comprised of Henderson, Polk and Transylvania Counties. The District Court is the proper division for general civil cases, such as personal injury, where the amount in controversy is $10,000 or less.The Superior Court is the proper division for the trial of civil actions in which the amount in total damages exceeds $10,000. Many personal injury cases, especially tractor-trailer accidents, medical malpracticechallenges, nursing home abuse cases and injuries under the heading of premises liability, would be heard in Henderson County Superior Court.