NOTICE: The MCHS Office has re-opened.

Visitors are welcome to stop by our office, but we would appreciate a phone call (828-688-4371) before your visit.
Social distancing and other suggested measures by the State of North Carolina are in effect.
Office hours are 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Tuesdays through Fridays.

The Corona Times

MCHS Documents the
Corona Virus Pandemic

 

Photo of Inez Blevins McRae

Inez McRae
Memorial Scholarship

Emma Carpenter is  the
2020 recipient.


Vendor Applications
Now Being Taken

 

SAVE THE DATE: October 17, 2020

Tell Your Story.

We are committed to saving and sharing
the stories of Mitchell County’s
people, places, and events.
Won’t you join us?

The History & Heritage of
Mitchell County, NC

The Mitchell County Historical Society is committed to the preservation of the history, heritage, and culture of Mitchell County, North Carolina. We hope you enjoy your visit and stop by often for updated stories, photos, and videos.

Donate to MCHS

The Mitchell County Historical Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, which means your donations are tex-deductible under the limitations of tax law. Your contributions help us continue our work.

Please consider making an online donation by clicking the button below.




Penland Cemetery Project

MCHS is seeking help with an important project we have undertaken. The historic Penland Cemetery in Bakersville has suffered from years of neglect, with vandals overturning tombstones and the plot becoming grown-over with trees and underbrush. We have begun efforts to repair the road to the cemetery and restore it so visitors and researchers have easy access. Learn more about the Penland Cemetery project and how you can help..

The 2020 Christmas Ornament

Photo of the Good Will Free Library Christmas OrnamentThe 2020 Mitchell County Historical Society Christmas Ornament honors the Good Will Free Library, constructed by Dr. Charles H. Wing who retired to Mitchell County after a distinguished academic career. He made it his mission to bring education to residents, providing vocational training and opening a library filled with many of his own books that he loaned throughout the county. It was during its time the largest public library in North Carolina.

VISIT THE MCHS ONLINE STORE FOR DETAILS >> 

MCHS Membership & Newsletter

Image of the front cover of the Third Quarter MCHS NewsletterBig changes are coming soon for members of the Mitchell County Historical Society in 2020

Discounts on merchandise purchased from the MCHS store are but one of the many goodies for members of MCHS. In fact, we have a preview of one of the new features available right now: our redesigned newsletter, the Quarterly Review. Download a copy (PDF file – opens with the free Adobe Reader software) and see what members will be receiving beginning in the new year. Plus, you will get advance notice (and input) on our 2020 presentation series, opportunities to volunteer to help preserve our history, and access to online resources to research topics and genealogy in our office located in the Historic Mitchell County Courthouse.

Not a member? Join today!

 


What’s New on the Site

Here are our latest posts about Mitchell County’s history. We welcome suggestions for topics to add. Please use our contact page to submit your ideas to us!

Places

Interesting stories

North Carolina Rhododendron Festival: Roots and Twigs

North Carolina Rhododendron Festival: Roots and Twigs

The beautiful Rhododendron flower is celebrated worldwide. These celebrations include festivals in Port Logan, England; Edinburgh, Scotland; Muroji, Japan; Taranaki, a bit south of New Plymouth, New Zealand: Florence, OR; Me, CA; Plymouth, MA; and tad closer to home,...

read more

People

Significant Individuals

Garrett Forbes – Tiller of the Land

Garrett Forbes – Tiller of the Land

Garrett B. Forbes was born in 1904 in the Tiger Creek section of Carter County, TN.  His parents, James Harrison and Mary Vista Moffitt Forbes, moved their family to Mitchell County when Garrett was two.  He had older sisters Pearl Forbes Yelton and Bertha Forbes...

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History

Happenings of note

Dr. Virgil Roscoe Butt, MD and Family

Dr. Virgil Roscoe Butt, MD and Family

First, a word about the Butt surname. Some researchers have traced the first Butt settlers in America to Dutch origin, with the name spelled Butz. However, in a reliable source entitled Names through the Ages, the name is seen as English, derived from Butler, meaning...

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Communities

Unique locales in Mitchell County

Mitchell County and the May Fresh of 1901

Mitchell County and the May Fresh of 1901

David Crockett described the flood of the Nolichucky in 1791 as “the second epistle to Noah’s fresh.” Most likely, since the Toe River feeds the Nolichucky and Cane Creek feeds the Toe River, the folks in what’s now Mitchell County also had to deal with high water....

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Icons

These define Mitchell County

Mrs. Ruby Sisk Gouge

Mrs. Ruby Sisk Gouge

Ruby Juanita Sisk was born December 18, 1898 in Franklin, North Carolina to Ray Dean and Emma Lou Guy Sisk. Her father was a successful attorney, state senator, and highly respected community citizen.She was an honor graduate from Woman’s College, UNC, which is now...

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Economics

Making a living in Mitchell County

Spruce Pine’s Gunter Building

Spruce Pine’s Gunter Building

The structure known as the Gunter Building, on the corner of Oak Avenue and Topaz Street, was erected about 1941; Spruce Pine was in the midst of a commercial boom based on the mining industry, which had greatly expanded in the first 2 decades of the 20th century and...

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Upcoming Events

Check out the upcoming events from the Mitchell County Historical Society. Click or tap on a date that is highlighted for information on what’s happening.

July 2020
Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
June 28, 2020 June 29, 2020 June 30, 2020 July 1, 2020 July 2, 2020 July 3, 2020 July 4, 2020
July 5, 2020 July 6, 2020 July 7, 2020 July 8, 2020 July 9, 2020 July 10, 2020 July 11, 2020
July 12, 2020 July 13, 2020 July 14, 2020 July 15, 2020 July 16, 2020 July 17, 2020 July 18, 2020
July 19, 2020 July 20, 2020 July 21, 2020 July 22, 2020 July 23, 2020 July 24, 2020 July 25, 2020
July 26, 2020 July 27, 2020 July 28, 2020 July 29, 2020 July 30, 2020 July 31, 2020 August 1, 2020