Holly Springs in Wake County had known success from its earliest days. By 1900, it had a reputation for education and commerce. By 1983, progress had passed it by, and the 700 citizens were faced with merging with another town or trying to revitalize theirs. They chose the latter; voted for bonds; and built the first sewer plant. That brought developers. In nine years the population rose to 7,000. The tax base went from $23 million to $500,000 million, and land prices tripled.