My quest continues to find mysterious places to visit in Western North Carolina. Tune in each week to see what I find!
Paint Rock, Hot Springs NC
Located in Madison County near the Tennessee border is Paint Rock, considered to be North Carolina's best pictograph. It is believed to be at least 5,000 years old and has been a landmark for settlers and natives. The early American Indians created the designs on the cliffs while they were on their way to the nearby healing waters of Hot Springs, which they thought to be a sacred site. The pictograph that gives the rock its name consists of rectilinear patterns etched into the stone and marked with indelible paints created from local ingredients. A Cherokee man's ghost has been spotted wandering the woods near the river and the springs. Others claim to have seen a Cherokee woman instead, one who sings. Haunts
Shelton Laurel Massacre
The Shelton Laurel Massacre, occurred on a bitterly cold day
in late January of 1863. The Confederate army sent a regiment
into the Unionist hotbed of Shelton Laurel, even today one of
the most isolated portions of Madison County. The
Confederate soldiers, almost all from Madison County
themselves, rounded up fifteen of their neighbors and took
them prisoner. It was hardly a force of fighting men they
captured. Many of the men were in their sixties, the youngest,
David Shelton, was thirteen, his brother fifteen. The prisoners
and all the members of the regiment, except their leader
Colonel Keith, believed the men and boys were to be taken to
a prison stockade in Tennessee. Inclement weather delayed
the march several days (long enough that two of the prisoners
escaped), but on the morning of January 18 the soldiers and
their captives began their trek westward. They had marched
only a few miles up the Knoxville Road when Colonial Keith
ordered the prisoners to line up. Soldiers drafted for the firing
squad at first refused to shoot, until Keith threatened to kill
them as well. The regiment was the North Carolina 64th.
The site of the massacre is near what is now Allegheny Rd.
The memorial is on a hill above hwy 212 and Allegheny Rd.
My quest is to seek out mysterious places to visit in Western North Carolina. Tune in each week to see what I find!
Helen's Bridge Asheville
Writer Thomas Wolfe walked under Helen’s Bridge many times while growing up and included it in a passage in his book, Look Homeward, Angel, but it is perhaps the lore surrounding the bridge that draws the most attention.
The arched bridge is made of quarried stone and was constructed in 1909 to provide access to the nearby Zealandia Mansion. The legend speaks of a woman named Helen who lived at or near the mansion with her beloved daughter. After Helen’s daughter died in a fire, the distraught mother hung herself from the bridge. Her anguished spirit is said to still appear when her name is called, although people who have attempted to raise the spirit have reported that their car will not start when they try to leave.