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The city of Morganton was named for General Hugh Waddell, a hero of the American Revolution. He was called "Bloody" because of his fierce fighting style and killed many Native Americans at the Battle of Alamance in 1771. The town grew out around Fort Butler, built to protect settlers from Indian attacks after the Cherokee moved away from this area in 1836-1837 due to conflicts with white settlers over land ownership and other issues. During that same year, Dr. Andrew Erwin (1792–1842), who had been part owner with William Lenoir (1760–1840) in a general store on Long Island near present-day Fayetteville since about 1820 or earlier; purchased property along Sugar Creek where he established his home place known as "Erwinton", which is now within downtown Morganton's city limits just northwardly across North Carolina Highway 16 Business (Main Street).