Oxford is a town in Granville County, North Carolina, United States, with a population of 8,461 as of the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Granville County.
The town's history dates to 1761, when local legislator Samuel Benton built a plantation home and called it "Oxford." The legislature ordered the area around his plantation to be the seat of Granville County. The town was not incorporated until 1816.
The first Masonic orphanage for children in the United States was built in Oxford. It was originally established as St. John's College in 1858. The college ceased operations shortly after opening, however. In 1872 the community decided that the property should be repurposed to educate disadvantaged populations. In December 1873 the first residents were admitted to the Oxford Orphans Asylum, which is today known as the "Masonic Home for Children at Oxford."
In 1851 James H. Horner established Horner Military Academy, which enrolled many young men from New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, South Carolina and other states. Many of the students went on to become leaders in the United States government, such as James Crawford Biggs, Solicitor General under President Franklin D. Roosevelt at the inception of the New Deal.
The Oxford Female College was established in 1851 by North Carolina Baptists.