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July’s Featured Product – Stories from the Great Smokies Natl Park

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“Reflections of Cataloochee” &” Step Back in Time”

These 2 histories describe the life and times of the Western North Carolina pioneer families that settled in the Cataloochee Valley during the 1800s. Cataloochee Valley eventually was incorporated into the Great Smokies National Park and all the local townspeople were relocated.

In “Reflections of Cataloochee and its Vanished People” the author and lifelong WNC native, Mrs. Hattie Caldwell Davis tells the story of her grandparents, Levi and Mary Ann Caldwell and their arrival in the valley in 1834. The area around the Big Cataloochee, Little Cataloochee Rivers was at that time an extremely remote wilderness completely surrounded by 4,000 to 6,000 feet high mountains.  

Teeming with deer, Black bears, beaver and other North Carolina wildlife the first pioneer families made their living hunting and trapping. Their story also chronicles their friendships with the Cherokee, the largest Native American peoples in the region.

Even then due to the fact that there were no roads leading into the valley, just a narrow foot trail any visitors, household items or creature comforts had to be packed in by mule or came on horseback. Mrs. Davis pays homage to the courage, tenacity and determination of her grandparents and the others who opened up this wonderful valley.

In “Step Back in Time” the story of the settlers in the Cataloochee continues, with the story of how these pioneer families built a road into their valley, without the use of any heavy construction equipment or dynamite!

Limited to simple hand tools, mountain ingenuity and sheer hard work, this tiny community of 160 forged a roadway into this very remote region by hand, a feat no one believed they could accomplish. Completed in 1860, the Cataloochee Turnpike still exists today.

We invite you to visit our store in Asheville, NC to learn more about these books and our collection of other books by local Western North Carolina authors.

The Mountain Made Store will host a book signing by Mrs.  Davis on September 5th.

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