About Mitchell County

Estatoe

This Mitchell County community in southern Mitchell County lies along Brushy Creek. The name comes from an Indian Princess who fell in love with a brave from a rival tribe. Because their love would never be accepted by either’s families, they jumped from a precipice...

Roan Mountain

Mitchell County’s most famous mountain straddles the Tennessee border at an elevation of 6,200 feet above sea level. It was probably named for its roan color when seen from a distance when the rhododendron are in bloom. Legend, however has it, that it was named for...

Penland

Penland

This world-renown community in southern Mitchell County, is famous for it’s School of Handicrafts. At an elevation of 2,462 feet, it was named for Milton Penland, pioneer settler and businessman. The Penland School of Crafts was founded in 1910 by Miss Lucy Morgan.

Fox Hunters on the Roan

Fox Hunters on the Roan

The July 21, 1955 edition of the Tri-County News featured this photo taken in 1905 at Roan Mountain in front of the bowling alley of the old Cloudland Hotel. These fox hunters are posing with their dogs. They are (left to right): Reverend Molt Buchanan, Bergin Gouge,...

Decoration at Old Town Cemetery in Bakersville

Decoration at Old Town Cemetery in Bakersville

Soon after the Civil War, Decoration Day began to be observed in many cemeteries around the Mountain South.  Southerners often claim the custom was copied in the North and became our national holiday, Memorial Day.  Generally held in the summer, Decoration Day...

Charlie Byrd’s Long Road Home

Charlie Byrd’s Long Road Home

At least three different versions of Charlie’s capture, escape, and eventful walk home from South Carolina during the Civil War have been gleaned from reliable local sources, including Harvey J. Miller.  None of those sources indicate why Charlie joined the Union Army...

Buster Brown Comes To Town!

Buster Brown Comes To Town!

Turning out when a celebrity visits town has always been commonplace, and when Buster Brown and his dog Tige stopped by the new Spruce Pine Store building in the 1920s, the whole town turned out to say hello. “I’m Buster Brown, and I live in a shoe. That’s my dog,...

The Glen Ayre Rambler – Wayne Ledford

The Glen Ayre Rambler – Wayne Ledford

This article courtesy of Blue Ridge Natural Heritage Area  www.blueridgeheritage.com/traditional-artist-directory/wayne-ledford Wayne Ledford was born into a musical family in the Little Rock Creek community of Mitchell County, and he has been playing for more than 75...

With Fire and Sword

With Fire and Sword

It was September of 1780, and British Major Patrick Ferguson had had enough. The Revolutionary War was in its fifth year and the British turned their attention to the southern colonies. British leaders believed that many citizens in this south remained loyal to King...

John Sevier’s Mitchell County Connections

John Sevier’s Mitchell County Connections

Heralded hero of the Battle of Kings Mountain and first governor of the new state of Tennessee (elected 5 additional times), John Sevier has several connections to Mitchell County. John’s grandfather was Valentine “The Huguenot” Sevier, born 1678 in Paris, France, but...

The “Burleson” of “Burleson Hill”

The “Burleson” of “Burleson Hill”

  J.E. Burleson operated this mica house atop Burleson Hill, the location of the current Spruce Pine Town Cemetery. Burleson began opening mica mines in 1894 and ground mica beginning in the 1900s. He was the largest individual mica operator in the region. His...

The Little Boxes before the Big Boxes

The Little Boxes before the Big Boxes

Before the days of the “big box” chain stores, Spruce Pine had many “mom and pop” grocery stores that served the area. There were also many smaller stores in almost every community. There was even a branch of the Dixie Home Store on Lower Street for several years that...

Little Switzerland

Little Switzerland

This exotic European name was penned by Judge Heriot Clarkson of Charlotte who established this resort community near the Blue Ridge Parkway in 1910. The resemblance of the area to the mountains of Switzerland gave rise to the name. At an altitude of 3,500 feet above...

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