Northampton County, North Carolina
Northampton County sits nestled up in the elbow formed by the Virginia / North Carolina border and the Roanoke River. In the last decade, the ten towns in North Carolina with the largest percentage population decline were all in 3 counties – Bertie, Northampton, and Washington. Five of these ten towns were in Northampton.
Projections for … Northampton … County indicate that further population decline is imminent. According to the Census’ data on components of change from 2010 to 2016, each of these counties demonstrated negative natural growth or natural decrease – whereby deaths outnumber births – and net out-migration from the county. This pattern has occurred each year since the last decennial census.
Northampton County is also a county that the federal government describes as demonstrating persistent poverty; this means that over 20% of the population have lived in poverty every day of every year for the past 30 years. However, one could say the same of the past 150 years. The history of this persistent poverty traces directly back to slavery.
Landscape images, no matter how straight forward, are subjective & bound up in cultural memory which shapes narratives that obfuscate the racist violence done upon people within the landscape. This project seeks to show the political and duplicitous landscapes of Northampton County through the context of environmental racism, and to provide a case-study for white supremacist landscape. Many of the landscapes in this projects are either under threat of destruction from the Atlantic Coast Pipeline or remain polluted as a result of toxic waste dumping or chemical production.