Raleigh was created by the State of North Carolina as the capital city. Back in the 1760s there existed just a few colonial settlements that was originally called Wake Crossroads and served as the county seat for Wake County.
Before the late 1780s a permanent state capital did not exist. The area around Wake Crossroads was selected for its central location and named after Sir Walter Raleigh, the explorer who funded the first expeditions to the North Carolina coast. The first State House opened in 1794.
The city of Raleigh escaped the devastation suffered by other Southern cities when North Carolina’s mayor Zebulon Vance and Raleigh Mayor William Harrison surrendered in April of 1865. Over the next 50 years Raleigh evolved into a retail and publishing center and an entertainment mecca for eastern North Carolina. Between 1842 and 1887, no fewer than six colleges and universities were founded in Raleigh including St. Mary’s School for women in 1842 and North Carolina State University in 1887.
Raleigh is now routinely listed as one of the best cities in the US, but its real growth didn’t begin until the 1970s with the growth of the Research Triangle Park as a research center just down the road. As more and more research facilities and corporations moved into RTP as it is called, they made their homes in Raleigh and the surrounding cities of the Triangle. Today there are over 400,000 people living in the Greater Raleigh area.
Living in Raleigh
Raleigh combines the amenities of a big city with the charm of a small city. Like many others its downtown has been revitalized over the past few years, with restaurants, bars and abundant nightlife. Life “inside the beltline” offers easy access to downtown museums and galleries, and the suburban areas provide parks and miles of shopping opportunities, along with a wide diversity of housing options to meet the taste and budget of everyone.
As the largest city of the Research Triangle, Raleigh provides a more diverse housing stock than the other communities which makes it an appealing choice for many. Home prices in Raleigh range from the very affordable to multi-million dollar luxury properties, making it easy to find the right home in a location that is convenient for your lifestyle. Access to world class entertainment and sports centers is an extra bonus, although because of the nature of the Triangle communities each town can easily access the entertainment options of the others.
Search the MLS for homes for sale in Raleigh .