Welcome to Johnston County ALHN page!


Johnston County was created in 1740 from the western part of Craven County. The county was named after Gabriel Johnston, who was the Royal Governor in 1734--1752. The county seat is Smithfield, which was incorporated in 1777. Also in Johnston County are the towns and communities of Clayton, Selma, Benson, Kenly, Four Oaks, Pine Level, Princeton, Wilson's Mills, and Micro. Johnston County is bounded by the following counties: Wilson, Wayne, Sampson, Cumberland, Harnett, Wake, and Nash counties. From 1771-1776, the County Seat was called Johnston Court House until Smithfield was established the following year.

Changes to the County Boundary

Since it's creation, the boundary lines have changed for Johnston County. Below is a list of changes

  • 1752, Orange County was created from parts of Bladen, Granville, and Johnston Counties
  • 1758, Dobbs County (no longer exists), was formed from the southern part of Johnston County
  • 1770, Wake County was created from the nothern part of Johnston County as well as parts of Cumberland County and Orange County
  • 1777, Johnston gained from Duplin County above Dismal Creek
  • 1855, Wilson County was created from parts of Edgecombe, Nash, Johnston, and Wayne Counties

Battle of Bentonville

The Battle of Bentonville was the biggest battle of the Civil War fought in North Carolina. The battle took place in Johnston County March 19-21, 1865. There were reports that Sherman's army (union) was marching toward Goldsboro. General Joseph E. Johnston, which a much smaller army, hoped to delay the troops from reaching Goldsboro and meeting up with Major General John M. Shofield's union troops that were already there. You can read more about the battle on NCpedia, the NC digital encyclopedia, a project with the State Library of North Carolina. There is also a state historic site in the town of Four Oaks.

Records and resources on other sites

I have no intention of duplicating others work, also, some original records have been put online through a collaboration of the State Library of North Carolina and the State Archives of North Carolina. Below is a list to other records online