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The city is the site of a large Ford assembly plant which opened in 1971. The first recorded inhabitants of Gastonia were the Saura, a Native American tribe whose people lived along the Catawba River and are thought to have been related to or culturally affiliated with other tribes in South Carolina such as those from whom de Soto's men took guides. They were driven out by white settlement after Indian Springs (now Kings Mountain) was attacked during Cherokee removal in 1838-39. In 1842, Dr. Alexander Stedman and his wife Margaret Beggs Stedman built their home on what is now East Franklin Street between Church Street and Singleton Avenue; it still stands today as part of an apartment complex named for him called "Stedmans Station.