Isothermal Belts in North Carolina

A longtime NC Collection researcher sent me an email recently pointing out that North Carolina’s “isothermal belts” would be a great topic for the Miscellany blog.

Ever heard of them? I had, but I couldn’t come up with a good definition, so I consulted William Powell’s Encyclopedia of North Carolina. Here’s what it had to say:

Isothermal Belt is a zone in western North Carolina, primarily in Rutherford and Polk Counties, in which temperature inversion resulting in milder temperature contributes to longer growing seasons than in the immediate surrounding region…”

[Interestingly, the entry was written by my high school history teacher, Paul L. McCraw, who taught at Davie County High School.]

The community college in that area is called Isothermal Community College, and one can only assume that they have had to define the term “isothermal” many, many times. So, they put together the following web page:

Thermal Belts in North Carolina