It is thought the town was named for a rock well located at a shady camping spot north of the present town limits at old Peter Miller farm. Travelers who stopped at the well to rest overnight marveled at the sweet water from the rock well. Most wells in the area had lumber curbing instead of rock curbing, and the lumber gave the water a certain taste, they said.
There was a post office located at the rock well, and this was later moved to the town of Rockwell.
Some historians have written that the town was earlier called Millville but the longtime Rockwell residents say this is incorrect. Millville was a settlement located at Heilig’s Pond near Lowerstone Church.
The primary historical attractions in the Rockwell area are Grace(Lower Stone) United Church of Christ and Organ Lutheran Church located just a few miles from town. Both of these churches date to the 1700's and have graveyards adjoining the churches which have proved to be a treasure-trove of genealogical information. Five miles to the northwest is the Old Stone House built of native hand hewn granite by Michael Braun (Brown) from 1758 to 1766. It is known as the oldest German house in North Carolina. It has been a popular tourist attraction since being restored by the Rowan Museum, Inc. This house and the two churches are on the Rowan tours.
For more information on the Town of Rockwell, Please visit the Town of Rockwell official website.