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Christine Lajewski posted a blog post

Tribute to Ashley

One of my closest friends, Rachelle, lost her daughter to a canoeing accident on a frigid November night in 2005.  I wrote a poem as a tribute to Ashley, which was later published in Deep Waters, the Tall Grass Writers' Guild 2012 anthology.  As we approach the 9th anniversary of the loss of this lovely young woman, I have posted the poem in my blog at Christine-lajewski.squarespace.com I think any "likes" would be appreciated by Rachelle.  Thank you for reading it.See More
yesterday
Lockie Hunter posted an event
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West End Poetry and Prose reading series: November edition at West End Bakery

November 22, 2014 from 7pm to 9pm
Join us for the 3rd in the West End reading series. This month we have 5 wonderful local authors. This is a marvelous Free family-friendly evening of prose, poetry, and storytelling featuring some of your favorite local Asheville writers. November's lineup includes:Allan Wolf Katey Schultz Matthew Olzmann Melissa Crowe Alli Marshallhosted by Lockie HunterSee More
Thursday
Rob Neufeld posted a discussion

Ellison's new look at Kephart in Our Southern Highlanders, 3d edition

Ellison retells Kephart and broadens a legacyby Rob Neufeld             One of the most influential people in our region’s history—Horace Kephart, the controversial and fascinating genius of the Great Smokies—has warranted a new consideration by George Ellison, a long-time scholar of Kephart’s life and…See More
Tuesday
Rob Neufeld posted discussions
Nov 15
Spellbound posted an event
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December ROYAL Book Club: Sabriel at Spellbound Children's Bookshop

December 7, 2014 from 4pm to 5pm
ROYAL is Spellbound’s monthly book club for adult Readers of Young Adult Literature. We meet the first Sunday of each month at 4:00PM. Anyone over 18 is welcome, no RSVP necessary. Book club selections are always 20% off until the day of the meeting.See More
Nov 15
City Lights Bookstore posted an event
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Tangible Evidence of Jesus at City Lights Bookstore

December 7, 2014 from 2pm to 3pm
Sylva author, Mary Joyce will present her book Tangible Evidence of Jesus on Sunday, December 7th at 2 p.m. at City Lights Bookstore. Tangible Evidence of Jesus was written after the Joyce plodded through much archaeological evidence and academic research. It is intended to be a bridge between scholarly researchers and most of the rest of us. It also was written for those who would like proof of Jesus beyond what is written in Christian Bibles. The writing style deliberately is condensed and to…See More
Nov 15
Renea Winchester shared City Lights Bookstore's event on Twitter
Nov 13
Renea Winchester is attending City Lights Bookstore's event
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The Charm of a Simple Country Farm at City Lights Bookstore

November 15, 2014 from 3pm to 4:30pm
On Saturday, November 15th at 3 p.m. Renea Winchester will visit City Lights Bookstore to present her new book, Farming Friends & Fried Bologna Sandwiches. Decades before the Farm-to-Table and Sustainable Living movement, Billy Albertson started tending a little strip of land just off Hardscrabble Road in what was then rural Roswell, Georgia. The second book in the Farmer Billy series, Farming transports readers to a simpler time, when roadside vegetable stands were common, friends gathered…See More
Nov 13
Renea Winchester posted an event

Author Reading/Book Signing at Great Expectations at Great Expectations Books

November 14, 2014 from 6pm to 7pm
Award-winning author, Renea Winchester will read from her latest book titled: Farming, Friends & Friend Bologna Sandwiches (Mercer University Press, October, 2014). The author will also give away seeds courtesy of Botanical Interests Seed CompanySee More
Nov 13
Jerald Pope posted an event

David LaMotte reads from his new book at Monte Vista Hotel

November 20, 2014 from 6pm to 7pm
The Black Mountain Authors Guild presents David LaMotte, a true Black Mountain treasure, signing and reading from his new book, Worldchanging 101, at six o’clock this Thursday, at The Monte Vista Hotel. LaMotte has been a fixture on the local music scene since the early nineties, performing over 2500 concerts nationally and internationally. He has released eleven albums, won international songwriting awards, and earned accolades from the Boston Globe, Washington Times, Soundcheck Magazine…See More
Nov 11
City Lights Bookstore posted events
Nov 5
Doris Anne Beaulieu posted a video

Creative Christmas Tree Videos

I created this video with the YouTube Video Editor (http://www.youtube.com/editor) Share my three youtube channels with family and friend for hours of viewin...
Nov 4
CHARLES C FLETCHER posted a video
Nov 2
Spellbound posted events
Nov 2
Susan Griner posted photos
Oct 31
Bill Ramsey posted an event

7th Annual Blue Ridge Bookfest at Blue Ridge Community College

April 24, 2015 at 1pm to April 25, 2015 at 3pm
Authors interested in being considered for the April 24, 25 2015 event at BRCC should visit www.blueridgebookfest.org soon. Click on the author tab on the home page. Complete the application and submit it by e-mail shown there. While there please sign up for our emailed newsletter.This year we will offer free workshops on Friday afternoon for authors and writer panels ( first time) on Saturday. See More
Oct 30

A rosette and a mountaintop recall a Civil War murder

by Rob Neufeld

See video.

 

Trip to the site

 

            The road to Noland Gap in Haywood County ascends 800 feet in a mile and a half, leading to a crest where Ultima Junaluska Development of Atlanta has recently constructed the subdivision, Avalon at Junaluska Highlands. 

            Here, the realtors’ website entices, you can experience “what ‘sitting on top of the world’ really means.”

            The landscape has changed.  Now, at the entrance to the new community, Signature Row Boulevard forks from Valhalla Cove to travel via the greenery of Tapestry Trail to Sleepy Hollow Drive, formerly connected only by a ridge along Utah Mountain.

Same place, generations ago

            In 1860, sitting on top of this world meant the families there could live and farm in peace, and, according to family lore, turn corn into liquor, which historically involved evading taxes imposed much more heavily on whiskey than on wine.

            That year saw the completion of the Cataloochee Turnpike, built by Jonathan Valley farmers to move livestock from East Tennessee and the Cataloochee area to eastern markets.

            The turnpike, Hattie Caldwell Davis notes in her book, “Cataloochee Valley,” was completed “just in time to be used by Teague’s Scouts” during the Civil War.

            “Captain Albert Teague of the Home Guards and his Scouts had been active in raids on the Union sympathizers, especially in the Big Bend section…where it was mostly prounion in sentiment in at least ten or twelve families.  Several of these were known as outliers.”

            The myth of Unionist sentiment in Western North Carolina stems from changes in loyalty late in the war, due to conscription and the course of the war; attempts to get federal benefits during Reconstruction; and one erroneous, much-quoted source (“Knocking at the Door” by Alexander Hamilton Jones).

            However, if there was one region where Unionism was strong, it was along the Tennessee-North Carolina border, a battleground for loyalty and east-west supply routes.

Cold Mountain fear

            When, in 1862, the Confederacy enacted conscription, draft-dodgers hid in caves, supplied by their women.  Teague’s men followed the women to the lairs and, in one famous incident, found and shot three men, “George and Henry Grooms and a simple-minded man named Mitchell Caldwell,” an article in the Fall 2007 issue of “Great Smoky Mountains Colloquy” stated.

            Before being executed, Henry played “Bonaparte’s Retreat” on his fiddle.  (Clark Medford said, in his 1961 “The Early History of Haywood County,” that it was Anderson Grooms, not Henry, who was present.  Some accounts say the fiddler was the dim-witted one.) 

            The story made it into Charles Frazier’s novel, “Cold Mountain,” with the location moved, and the names Grooms and Caldwell changed to Stobrod and Prangle.

Remembeing the shot sheriff

            Now, we are back at the entrance to Avalon, Jan. 24, 2013.  Lynn Noland, a Haywood County attorney, has brought family members and local lawmen together to transfer a framed rosette to Bobby Suttles, the Sheriff of Haywood County.

            Noland had received the rosette from Chuck Jenkins of Rockport, Washington, who revealed it had belonged to his great-grandfather, John Phillip Noland, Sheriff of Haywood County, who’d been murdered on September 22, 1862 when he’d followed JoAnn Robinson up what is now Breckenridge Road from the old county jail, where she’d been visiting her husband, Bud, arrested for draft evasion.

            John Franklin, a Robinson neighbor, was the sheriff’s target.

            “Sheriff Noland was attired in a black hat, long black frock coat, black trousers, a white shirt, and a black “string” or “bow tie,’” Lynn writes in his family history.

            “On his left lapel he wore a crimson fabric ‘rosette’ as his badge of office.  The original official sheriff’s badge had been donated for its metal in furtherance of the Confederate war effort.”

            As JoAnn Robinson neared the crest of the ridge, she gave a pre-arranged signal to her kin, hiding in the laurels, Lynn relates, having heard the story from both Jenkins and Lourena Troutman, granddaughter of Phillip Noland, in 1982.

           “The words from the old hymn, ‘How Firm a Foundation,’ floated through the clear mountain air…A heavy lead ball struck Philip Noland in the throat, knocking him from his horse.  He died there in the high ridge gap that now bears his name.”

Guilty go free, and othe legacies

            The county arrested James H. Franklin as one of the outliers who caused Noland’s death, and sentenced him to death in a week devoted entirely to capital offenses in mid-October, 1862.  There is no record of the sentence being carried out.

            Several Robinsons, including Bud and JoAnn, fled west.  Some family members changed their name to Roberson to distinguish themselves from the assassins.  In 1868, the Union Army dropped charges against the Unionist killers.

            Noland family members continue to live in the Rogers Cove and Jonathan Creek areas. 

            Lindon Nichols, Philip’s great-grandson, worked for many years installing septic tanks and water lines for developers, sometimes having to park a bulldozer in front of his backhoe to avoid slipping downhill as he dug into the stony soil, which offered little dirt for fill.

            A four-time-great-grandson of Philip Noland tells about his love for fishing and how now he is sometimes picked up by police for trespassing on streams he’d used to fish unbothered.

            Lynn Noland relates how, in staging the ceremony on Noland Gap, he is fulfilling Jenkins' wish  to  honor the “memory of all Haywood County law enforcement officers who have given their lives in the line of duty.” 

 

SEE MORE

See a video of the pilgrimage and ceremony.

PHOTO CAPTIONS

Family members and lawmen gather at the spot where Sheriff Philip Noland had been shot and killed in 1862.  Lynn Noland is holding the framed rosette; Lindon Nichols holds a portrait of Philip; and Sheriff Suttles is to Nichols’ left.

 

Sheriff Philip Noland, photo courtesy Lynn Noland.

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