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Matthews, North Carolina was first settled in the early 1800s by cotton farmers who were attracted by the rich hunting grounds and fertile land. Fast-forward 25 years, and the area had a post office, stagecoach depot, and general store, though they were all operated out of the home of local resident, John Miles Fullwood. The end of the Civil War saw the arrival of a sawmill, bringing the timber industry to the small community. The first train came chugging into town in late 1874, linking the local citizenry to the surrounding communities. By the dawn of the 20th century, Matthews was a bustling little community, with three general stores, a drug store, a hotel, a bank, and a blacksmith. Matthews has grown quite a lot over the last century. The population is nearly 30,000, and this Charlotte, NC suburb boasts shopping centers, a thriving hospitality industry, as well as its own hospital. It is home to several national businesses, including a Fortune 500 company. But while the modern age has come to Matthews, the past has certainly not been forgotten. The old train depot has been relocated to the Village Green and restored, and is now a popular local tourist attraction. The historical downtown area is remarkably well preserved, and is now a busy center of commerce. Matthews is close to the action in nearby Charlotte, but offers the sort of quality of life that small-town residents prefer.