History

Sheriff George K Pritchard – A Colorful Character!

Sheriff George K Pritchard – A Colorful Character!

  Mitchell County has had 21 men serve as Sheriff. In 1861 the first was Jackson Stewart, the brother of Frankie Stewart Silver; since then many interesting stories have been told and many more are most likely out there to be collected. One of the most colorful...

Catching The Train

Catching The Train

Catching the Clinchfield as it wound its way northbound up the mountains, or southbound to the piedmont was an easy task when passenger service was common. The railroad, which ran from coalfields of Elkhorn City, Kentucky to the textile mills of upstate South...

The Spanish Flu Epidemic of 1918

The Spanish Flu Epidemic of 1918

A lot of older folks recall their parents and grandparents telling stories about the deadly “grip” that many Mitchell County families suffered 100 years ago. “They said that some took sick and died in two or three days. It was pretty bad.” Little did they know that...

Brummetts Creek School

Brummetts Creek School

It’s back to school time!  These days public schools have consolidated, with only 2 high schools, 2 middle schools, 2 elementary schools, and 1 primary school in Mitchell County.  A century ago, however, each community had a small school with most grades attending...

Baptism at Pigeon Roost

Baptism at Pigeon Roost

Baptisms in a creek or river were once the rule rather than the exception for Appalachian Christians. Even if they hadn’t believed immersion in an outside body of water was appropriate, it was some time before indoor plumbing would have made a baptistery inside a...

Building the “Scenic”

Building the “Scenic”

On November 16, 1933, the Blue Ridge Parkway project received approval from Congress. After much debate in Washington, the Virginia – North Carolina route won out, completely leaving out the state of Tennessee. Had the Tennessee route been included, the road would...

Singing School at McKinney Cove Baptist Church

Singing School at McKinney Cove Baptist Church

Singing Schools such as the one pictured here at McKinney Cove Baptist Church were once common in the Appalachian South.   Churches often could not afford or did not approve of musical instruments as part of worship, so the congregation learned to sing a cappella. ...

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