The first settlers came to the area in the late 1740's from Pennsylvania, Virginia and South Carolina. Friendly Catawba Indian villages were scattered throughout the territory.
Increasing numbers of settlers were attracted to the area and on December 11, 1762, a petition was granted by the Provincial Assembly creating Mecklenburg County from a portion of Anson County, effective February 1, 1763. Settlers chose the name of Mecklenburg in hopes of graining favor with King George III of England whose wife, Queen Charlotte, was born in Germany in a province of that name. The present size of the county, 542 square miles, was established in 1842.
After creation of the new county, there were vigorous competition between the residents of the east and those who lived in the community of "Charlottesburg" or "Charlottetown" over the location of the county seat. Leaders of Charlottetown built a log courthouse in 1766 at the intersection that is now Trade and Tryon Streets. On November 7, 1768, the Town of Charlotte, named again after the Queen, was incorporated and chosen temporarily as the county seat, a designation which became permanent in 1774.
By the mid-1770's strong resentment against government by the English had developed. To decide what course of action should be taken, Mecklenburg leaders from each militia distract gathered at the County Courthouse. On May 20, 1775, the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence, a brief document formally renouncing the county's ties with England, was signed and proclaimed to the populace from the courthouse steps their independence.
In 1761, the first white settler in the vicinity of what is now Pineville, drove his oxen down from Virginia. Driving down the Waxhaw Trail, Thomas Spratt and his family came upon the junction with a westward trail. Here he "Turned Out" along the bank of the Sugar Creek and built his cabin.