This map plots the settings and references in Picking Cotton

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Burlington, North Carolina
Elon University
Creative Commons Attribution Share AlikeElon University - Credit: MPD01605, Flickr

Burlington is the home of Elon University and the setting of the vast majority of Picking Cotton.  Located in Alamance County, Burlington covers just 21.3 square miles.  However, it is the largest city in the county.  According to the 1990 census, the racial makeup of the city is slightly less than one African American person to every three Caucasian people.  In Picking Cotton Ronald Cotton, a black male, was accused in 1984 of raping Jennifer Thompson, a white female.  Burlington is the home of LabCorp, which was the corporation that tested Ronald Cotton’s DNA and exonerated him.  LabCorp is actually where most of Alamance County is employed.

Burlington Demographics


Written by: Rebekah Currie & Kelsey Weiss, student authors