Caswell County was born in 1777 during the American Revolution and named to honor Richard Caswell, the first governor of North Carolina. Lying in the north central part of the state, Caswell's rolling countryside abounds with soil well suited for many crops, particularly tobacco. It was tobacco and a slave-based plantation economy that generated substantial wealth and political influence before the Civil War. During a period in the early 19th century, both the speakers of North Carolina's Senate and House of Commons were from Caswell County. The resulting wealth and influence produced institutions and structures unsurpassed elsewhere in the state. This included the bank of the county seat, Yanceyville, which before the Civil War was one of the best-capitalized banks in the South. Fortunately, many of the historic buildings remain, and Caswell County today is a popular destination for heritage tourism. The county boasts two National Historic Districts, one national landmark, and numerous structures on the National Register of Historic Places.