Lincoln was formed in 1779 from Tryon. It was named in honor of General Benjamin Lincoln, a distinguished general of the Revolution whom George Washington appointed to receive the sword of Cornwallis when he surrendered at Yorktown. It is in the southwestern section of the State and is bounded by Mecklenburg, Gaston, Cleveland, Catawba and Iredell counties. The present land area is 298.79 square miles and the 2000 population was 63,780. The act establishing the county appointed commissioners to select a convenient and central place and to erect a courthouse and prison. In 1782 and in 1784 new commissioners were appointed, as the previously appointed commissioners had failed to act. In 1785 Lincolnton was established on land selected for the county seat. It is the present county seat.