The History

In 1900 there was not a place
called Knightdale.

A Town is Born

Out of Innovation & Progress

Born out of the vision that one man had for a town in hopes that the newly founded Norfolk and Southern Railroad Company would use the land he donated to them and bring a railroad to the area, the Town of Knightdale was founded and named in honor of that man, Henry Haywood Knight, shortly after his untimely passing in 1904.

Sharing the sentiments of many local landowners who saw unlimited potential for the growth of the area when learning of the plans for the Raleigh and Pamlico Sound Railroad Company to lay a track that would run from Norfolk, Virginia to Raleigh, North Carolina, Mr. Knight selflessly donated some of his vast land holdings to the group in 1903. Later that year, the group would change its name to the Norfolk and Southern Railroad Company and as the year turned over to 1904, the plans for the railway between Norfolk and Raleigh were put into effect. Unfortunately, Mr. Knight passed away on May 7 of that year, not living to see his vision become a reality.

Later that year, Mr. Knight’s vision came to fruition and the railroad would pass through his former land. The community would be developed honoring his namesake, giving birth to the town of Knightdale. With the railroad and depot descending upon the new town, life and commerce levels began moving at a quickened pace. With trains moving farm products and timber and people now “riding the rails” into Raleigh, jobs were being created and the area saw an influx of new families. Many of Knightdale’s older homes were built to house these families, including the home of the railroad’s stationmaster which still stands today on Railroad Street. Eventually Knightdale was incorporated by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1927.

The vision of Henry Haywood Knight to see the community grow would prove a precursor of things to come in the generations to follow, as the town grew and prospered throughout the 20th century. The development of Knightdale Station Park continues on the ambitious path that Henry had envisioned, with each of the generations to follow helping the town to grow and prosper throughout history. With Knightdale Station Park linking the rich heritage of Knightdale and its past to its children of today that will inevitably lead the town into its future, it would seem that even more than a century after Mr. Knight’s passing, the town is now more than ever moving “full speed ahead.”

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Parks and Greenways in Knightdale include Knightdale Station and Trails, Knightdale Community Park and Trails, Environmental Park and Trail, Mingo Creek Park and Trail, and Harper Park.

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With the opening of Knightdale Station, Preston Development Company’s first venture in eastern Wake County is on track and full steam ahead! Knightdale Station will feature 810 homes and the Knightdale Station YMCA with Aquatics Center to open for Memorial Day 2015.