History of Western North Carolina
The diameter given above refers to that of the branches not of the trunks. The proverbial still-house, said to have been on White Top, is also said to have caused this aberration; but the probability is that the commissioners had a more substantial reason than that. In North Carolina passed an act Ch. Kerr in Report of Geological Survey of N.
I, p. Richard Henderson was appointed on the part of North Carolina, and Dr. Thomas Walker on that of Virginia, to run this line, and they began their task in the spring of ; and on the last day of March of that year Col.
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Richard Henderson met the Donelson party on its way from the Watauga settlements to settle at the French Lick, in the bend of the Cumberland. But nine years before, in , Anthony Bledsoe, one of the new-comers to the Watauga settlement, being a practical surveyor, and not being certain that that settlement was wholly within the borders of Virginia, extended the line of from its end near the Holston river far enough to the west to satisfy himself that the new settlement on the Watauga was in North Carolina.
Burrington [of North Carolina] published a proclamation in Timothy's Southern Gazette, declaring the lands lying on the north side of the Waccamaw river to be within the Province of North Carolina, to which Gov. Johnson [of South Carolina] replied by a similar proclamation claiming the same land to belong to South Carolina; and also claiming that when they [the two governors] had met before the Board of Trade in London to settle this matter in '30, Barrington had "insisted that the Waccamaw should be the boundary from its mouth to its head," while South Carolina had contended that "the line should run 30 miles distant from the mouth of the Cape Fear river on the southwest side thereof, as set forth in the instructions, and that the Board had agreed thereto, unless the mouth of the Waccamaw river was within 30 miles of the Cape Fear river; in which case both Governor Barrington and himself had agreed that the Waccamaw river should be the boundary.
IV, 8. In consequence of this dispute commissioners were appointed by both colonies, who were to meet on the 23d of April, , and run a due west line from the Cape Fear along the sea coast for thirty miles, and from thence proceed northwest to the 35th degree north latitude, and if the line touched the Pee Dee river before reaching the 35th degree, then they were to make an offset at five miles distant from the Pee Dee and proceed up that river till they reached that latitude; and from thence they were to proceed due west until they came to Catawba town; but if the town should be to the northward of the line, "they were to make an offset around the town so as to leave it in the South government.
These followed the line run by the North Carolina commissioners about 40 miles, and finding it correct, refused to run it further because they had not been paid for their services. A deputy surveyor, however, took the latitude of the Pee Dee at the 35th parallel and set up a mark, which was from that date deemed to be the mearing or boundary at that place. In the line was extended in the same direction 22 miles to a stake in a meadow supposed to be at the point of intersection with the 35th parallel of north latitude.
IV, p. Kerr's Report of the Geological Survey of N. The reasons that controlled the commissioners in recommending this course … were that the observations of their own astronomer, President Caldwell of the University, showed there was a palpable error in running the line from the Pee Dee to the Salisbury road, that line not being upon the 35th parallel, but some 12 miles to the South of it, and that "the line of " was just about far enough north of the 35th parallel to rectify the error, by allowing South Carolina to gain on the west of the Catawba river substantially what she had lost through misapprehension on the east of it.
Potter's Revisal, p. The peace of with Great Britain did nothing more to secure our western limits than to confirm us in the control of the territory already in our possession; for while the Great Lakes were recognized as our northern boundary, Great Britain failed to formally admit that boundary till the ratification of the Jay treaty, on the ground that we had failed to fulfill certain promises; and while she had likewise consented to recognize the 31st parallel as our southern boundary, it had been secretly agreed between America and Great Britain that, if she recovered West Florida from Spain, the boundary should run a hundred miles further north than the 31st parallel.
For this land, drained by the Gulf rivers, had not been England's to grant, as it had been conquered and was then held by Spain. Nor was it actually given up to us until it was acquired by Pinckney's masterly diplomacy. The reasons for these reservations were that while France had been our ally in the Revolutionary war, Spain was also the ally of France both before and after the close of that conflict; and our commissioners had been instructed by Congress to "take no steps without the knowledge and advice of France.
Spain, however, was quite as hostile to us as England had been, and predicted the future expansion of the United States at the expense of Florida, Louisiana and Mexico. Therefore, she tried to hem in our growth by giving us the Alleghanies as our western boundary. The French court, therefore, proposed that we should content ourselves with so much of the transAlleghany territory as lay around the head waters of the Tennessee and between the Cumberland and Ohio, all of which was already settled; "and the proposal showed how important the French court deemed the fact of actual settlement.
The States themselves had already by their actions shown that they admitted this to be the case. Thus, North Carolina, when by the creation of Washington county-now the State of Tennessee,-she rounded out her boundaries, specified them as running to the Mississippi. As a matter of fact the royal grant, under which alone she could claim the land in question, extended to the Pacific; and the only difference between her rights to the regions east and west of the river was that her people were settling in one, and could not settle in the other.
One of the chief objections to the adoption of the Articles of Confederation, which Congress formulated and submitted to the States November 15, , by some of the States was that each State had considered that upon the Declaration of Independence it was possessed of all the British lands which at any time had been included within its boundary; and Virginia, having in , captured a few British forts northwest of the Ohio, created out of that territory the "County of Illinois," and treated it as her property. Other States, having small claims to western territory, insisted that, as the western territory had been secured by a war in which all the States had joined, all those lands should be reserved to reward the soldiers of the Continental army and to secure the debt of the United States.
Maryland, whose boundaries could not be construed to include much of the western land, refused to ratify the articles unless the claim of Virginia should be disallowed. It was proposed by Virginia and Connecticut to close the union or confederacy without Maryland, and Virginia even opened a land office for the sale of her western lands; but without effect on Maryland.
At this juncture, New York, which had less to gain from western territory than the other claimants, ceded her claims to the United States; and Virginia on January 2, , agreed to do likewise. Thereupon Maryland ratified the articles, and on March 1, , the Articles of Confederation were duly put into force.
From that date Congress was acting under a written charter or constitution. Hart, Sec. When, at the close of the Revolution, it became necessary that Congress take steps to carry out the pledge it had given October 10, to see that such western lands should be disposed of for the common benefit, and formed into distinct republican States under the Union, it urged the States to cede their western territory to it to be devoted to the payment of the soldiers and the payment of the national debt.
The northern tier of States soon afterwards ceded their territory, with certain reservations; but the process of cession went on more slowly and less satisfactorily in the southern States. Virginia retained both jurisdiction and land in Kentucky, while North Carolina, in , granted "jurisdiction over what is now Tennessee," but every acre of land had already been granted by the State.
This, however, is not strictly true, much Tennessee land not having been granted then.
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This act was amended in , giving "the governor for the time being and his successor full power and authoriy to enter into any compact or agreement that he may deem most advisable" with the South Carolina and Georgia authorities for the settlement of the "boundary lines between these States and North Carolina.
It being understood and agreed that the said lines shall be so run as to leave all the waters of Saluda river within the State of South Carolina; but shall in no part run north of a course due west from the termination of the line of John Patton commissioners to meet other commissioners from South Carolina to run and mark the boundary line between the two States in accordance with the recommendation of the commissioners who had met and agreed, "at McKinney's, on Toxaway river, on the 4th of September, Therefore the Legislature of North Carolina passed an act Rev.
September fifteenth, eighteen hundred and fifteen, " running thence west four miles and ninety poles to a stone marked N. In the North Carolina Legislature passed an act Rev. II, Andrew Ellicott had been previously appointed to survey the line under the Creek treaty of according to Fifth Eth. October 14, ; and on the north side, 35 degree N. The Legislature then enacted "That the said boundary line, as described in the said report, be, and the same is hereby fully established, ratified and confirmed forever, as the boundary line between the States of North Carolina and Georgia.
The last section of the act confirming the survey of the line from the Big Pigeon to the Georgia line, as run and marked by the commissioners of North Carolina and Tennessee in , Rev. The line of this parallel, however, was at that time supposed to run about twelve miles north of what was subsequently ascertained to be its true location. This tract remained, as was supposed, within the chartered limits of South Carolina, and in the year was ceded by that State to the United States, subject to the Indian right of occupancy.
When the Indian title to the country therein described was ceded to the United States by the treaty of with the Cherokees, the eastern portion of this mile tract fell within the limits of such cession. On its eastern extremity near the head-waters of the French Broad river, immediately at the foot of the main Blue Ridge Mountains, had been located, for a number of years prior to the treaty, a settlement of about fifty families of whites, who, by its ratification became occupants of the public domain of the United States, but who were outside of the territorial jurisdiction of any State.
These settlers petitioned Congress to retrocede the tract of country upon which they resided to South Carolina, in order that they might be brought within the protection of the laws of that State. A resolution was reported in the House of Representatives from the committee to whom the subject had been referred, favoring such a course, but Congress took no effective action on the subject, and when the State boundaries came finally to be adjusted in that region the tract in question was found to be within the limits of North Carolina.
That there should have been great confusion and uncertainty as to the exact boundary- lines between the States in their earlier history is but natural, especially in the case where the corners of three States come together, and still more especially when they come together in an inaccessible mountainous region, such as characterized the cornerstone between Georgia, South and North Carolina. And that renegades and other lawless adventurers should take advantage of such a condition is still more natural.
It is, therefore, not surprising to read in "The Heart of the Alleghanies," p. Their stay, in most cases, was short, seclusion furnishing their profession a barren field for operation. A few, however, remained, either adopting the wild, free life of the chase, or preying upon the property of the community. Such a community existed at the commencement of the last century on the head waters of the French Broad river in what are now Jackson and Transylvania counties.
Some even claimed that this territory belonged to South Carolina. But Georgia, about December, , created a county within this territory and called it Walton county. Georgia naturally attempted to exercise jurisdiction over what it really believed was its own territory, and North Carolina as naturally resisted such attempts. Consequently, there were "great dissentions, … the said dissentions having produced many riots, affrays, assaults, batteries, woundings and imprisonments. On January 13, , Georgia presented a memorial to the House of Representatives of Congress, complaining that North Carolina was claiming lands lying within the State of Georgia, and asking that Congress interpose and cause the 35th degree of north latitude to be ascertained and the line between the two States plainly marked.
It was not known where these settlers came from; but the land had belonged to the Cherokees until when a part of it was purchased by the whites by treaty held at Tellico. Booklet, Vol IlI, No. At the earnest entreaty of these inhabitants Georgia in formed the inhabited part of this territory into Walton county and appointed commissioners to meet corresponding commissioners to be appointed by North Carolina to ascertain and mark the line. But Congress took no definite action on this report.
The two States, in , came to an agreement as to the basis of a survey. In a letter dated at Louisville, Ga. Jared Irwin to Gov. Nathaniel Alexander of North Carolina, enclosed sundry resolutions adopted by the legislature of Georgia, and announced that that body had appointed Thomas P. Carnes, Thomas Flournoy and William Barnett as commissioners to ascertain the 35th' of north latitude "and plainly mark the dividing line between the States of North Carolina and Georgia.
Alexander enclosed to Gov. Irwin a copy of an act of the legislature passed at the preceding session assenting to the proposition of Georgia and appointing John Steele, John Moore and James Welbourne commissioners on the part of North Carolina. It was subsequently agreed that the commissioners from both States should meet at Asheville June 15, ; Rev. Meigs represented Georgia in that capacity. In the minute docket of the county court of Buncombe, pp. This they proceeded to do, with the result that on the 27th of June, at Douthard's gap on the summit of the Blue Ridge, they signed a supplemental agreement to the effect that they had discovered by repeated astronomical observations that the 35th degree of north latitude is not to be found on any part of said ridge east of the line established by the general government as the temporary boundary between the white people and the Indians, and having no authority to proceed over that boundary "in order to ascertain and mark that degree," they agreed that Georgia had no right to claim any part of the territory north or west of the Blue Ridge and east or south of the present temporary line between the whites and Indians; and would recommend to the Georgia Legislature that it repeal the act which had established the county of Walton on North Carolina soil.
Both sets of commissioners then agreed to recommend amnesty for all who had been guilty of violating the laws of either State under the assumption that it had no jurisdiction over that territory. Sturges, the Surveyor General of Georgia, had previously ascertained this meridian to be at the junction of Davidson's and Little rivers. But, said the Georgia commissioners in their report to their governor, they were "accompanied by an artist [sic] appointed by the government [of the United States] whose talents and integrity we have no reason to doubt, " whose observations accorded very nearly with their own; they "were under the necessity of suspending our astonishment and proceeding on the duty assigned us.
When they got to the junction of Davidson and Little rivers and found that they were still 17 minutes north of the 35th meridian, they "proceeded to Caesar's Head, a place on the Blue Ridge about 12 horizontal miles directly south and in the vicinity of Douthet's Gap, which was from 2' 57" to 4' 54" north of the 35th parallel. They then signed the supplementary agreement of June On December 28, , Gov. Irwin of Georgia wrote to Governor Stone of North Carolina, asking for the appointment of a new commission on the part of North Carolina to meet one already appointed by the legislature of Georgia; but Gov.
Stone declined in a communication of March 21, , in which he states that it "does not readily occur to us on what basis the adjustment is to rest, if not upon that where it now stands-the plighted faith of two States to abide by the determination of commissioners mutually chosen for the purpose of making the adjustment those commissioners actually made". On December 7, , North Carolina had adopted and ratified the joint report of the commissioners of the two States and on December 18 "passed an act of amnesty for offenders within the disputed territory.
But Georgia sent still another petition to Congress by way of appeal, and its legislature on December 5, , "put forth an earnest protest against the decision arrived at by their own commissioners. Bibb of Georgia, asked the United States to appoint some person to run the dividing line, and it was referred to a select committee on the 27th of the following December, that committee never reported. Georgia must have become reconciled, however, for in its legislature refused relief to certain citizens who had claimed land in this disputed territory.
The late Captain W. This is either a mistake or else the latest topographical charts are incorrect. One peculiarity of this survey is that Estatoa, or Mud Creek Falls, which has long been considered as being in Georgia, are, according to the map, in North Carolina. Mud creek crosses the State line a few yards above the falls into North Carolina, and at about half way between the falls and the Tennessee river passes back into Georgia. But, by examining some old records belonging to the State Library at Raleigh in , I am convinced that the line between the States of Georgia and North Carolina has never been correctly surveyed.
The 10th section provided that. The reasons for making this cession are set out in the act itself and are to the effect that Congress has "repeatedly and earnestly recommended to the respective States … claiming or owning vacant western territory," to make cession to part of the same, as a further means "of paying the debts and establishing the harmony of the United States;" "and the inhabitants of the said western territory being also desirious that such cession should be made, in order to obtain a more ample protection than they have heretofore received.
Also that in case the lands laid off by North Carolina for the "officers and soldiers of the Continental line" shall not "contain a sufficient quantity of lands fit for cultivation to make good the quota intended by law for each such make up the deficiency out of lands of the ceded territory. The survey began on the 20th of May and ended Friday the 28th of June, Newman, in the United States court at Asheville, N.
The actual survey began May 22d, "at a sugar-tree and beech on Pond mountain, so called from two small ponds on it. Both trees are now gone, and a stone four feet by two feet by sixteen inches in thickness, is buried in the ground where they stood, with a simple cross, east and west, chiseled upon it.
Its upper surface is level with the ground, and it was placed there in or by a Mr. Buchanan of the United States coast survey. Marion Miller and John and Alfred Bivins assisted him. Miller still lives within a mile and a half of the corner rock. Strother's party set out from Asheville May 12, and reached Capt. He was either a Tory or a Cynic, it seems. David Vance and Gen. Joseph McDowell, but as they did not come, Strother went to the house of a Mr.
Elsburg on the 18th. Vance and Major B. Collins arrived on the 19th, and they all went to Captain Isaac Weaver's. Matthews, chain-bearers and markers; Major James Neely, commissary; two pack-horse men and a pilot. They camped that night on Stag creek. On the night of the 23d of May they camped "at a very bad place" in a low gap at the head of Laurel Fork of New river and Laurel Fork of Holston at the head of a branch, "after having passed through extreme rough ground and some bad laurel thickets. A small hotel now stands half on the North Carolina and half on the Tennessee side of the line those men then ran, and the gap is called "Cut Laurel" gap because it is literally cut through the laurel for a mile or more.
Ambrose gap is a few miles southwest and is so called because a free negro of that built a house across the State line in this gap, and when he died his grave was dug half in Tennessee and half in North Carolina according to local tradition. It is called by Mr. Strother a low gap, but it is one of the highest in the mountains. On the 28th they went to a Mr. Miller's and got a young man to act as a pilot. Curtis and met the company in a low gap between the waters of Cove creek and Roan's creek where the road crosses the same," on Wednesday night, the 29th.
This, in all probability, is the gap through which Daniel Boone and his party had passed in on their way to Kentucky. It is between Zionville, N. Tradition says that an Indian trail went through the same gap, and traces of it are still visible to the north of the present turnpike. The young man who had been employed as a pilot at Mr. Miller's house on the 28th was found on the 29th not to be a "woodsman and of course he was discharged. On Saturday, June 1st, they came upon "a very large rattlebug," which they "attempted to kill, but it was too souple in the heels for us.
There are some who, nowadays, contend that ivy and laurel did not grow in these mountains while the Indians occupied them, and cite as proof that it is almost impossible to find a laurel log with rings indicating more than a hundred years of growth. But Bishop Spangenburg mentions having encountered laurel on what is supposed to have been the Grandfather mountain in , and John Strother, in his diary of the survey between Virginia and North Carolina in , repeatedly mentions it, both before and after crossing the ridge which divides the waters of Nollechucky from those of the French Broad.
What are now known as the "ivory Slicks," is a tunnel cut through the otherwise impenetrable ivy on the slope between the Hang Over and Dave Orr's cabins on Slick Rock, south of the Little Tennessee. Even at that early date there seem to have been two roads crossing the mountains into Tennessee, for the very next call of the statute is "thence along the ridge of said mountain between the waters of Doe river and the waters of Rock creek to the place where the road crosses the Iron mountain. Avery now lives. Allison, p. When the surveying party came to the Yellow they found that the compass had been deflected when it had been sighted from the peak just north of Watauga Falls, caused doubtless by the proximity to the Cranberry Iron mountain, of whose existence apparently they then had no knowledge.
Of late years some have supposed that the "territory between the Iron mountain and the Blue Ridge, after the act of cession, was left out of any county from or till or , and was without any local government till it was annexed to Burke county. Lowe, Esq. Within the past twenty-five years it has been clearly demonstrated that some of the Cathcart grants run with the Tennessee line for 14 miles.
Hawkins and myself went down to Sugar creek to a Mr. Currey's, where we got a good supper and a bed to sleep in," continues the diary. Evidently the food in the camp had about given out, for we hear nothing more of meals "fit for a European Lord;" but, instead, of the comforts of good Mr. Currey's bed and board. Here too they "took breakfast with Mrs.
Currey, got our clothes washed and went to camp, where Major Neely met us with a fresh supply of provisions. It rained all day- [and] of course we are still at our camp at the head of Sugar creek. The next day they crossed "high spur of the Roan mountain to a low gap therein where we encamped at a pleasant Beech flat and good spring. Any one who has never seen one of these "pleasant beech flats" would scarcely realize what they are like. As one ascends any of the higher mountains of North Carolina, the size of all the trees perceptibly diminish, especially near the six thousand feet line, to be succeeded, generally, on the less precipitous slopes, by miniature beech trees, perfect in shape, but resembling the so-called dwarf trees of the Japanese.
They really seem to be toy trees.
It was here that they "spent the Sabbath day in taking observations from the high spur we crossed, in gathering the fir oil of the Balsam of Pine which is found on the mountain, in collecting a root said to be an excellent preventative against the bite of a rattlesnake, and in visioning the wonderful scene this conspicuous situation affords. There is no shrubbery grows on the tops of this mountain for several miles, say, and the wind has such a power on the top of this mountain that the ground is blowed in deep holes all over the northwest sides.
The prospect from the Roan mountain is more conspicuous [extensive? A modern prospectus of the large and comfortable hostelry, called the Cloudland hotel, which has crowned this magnificent mountain for more than thirty years, the result of the ardor and enterprise of Gen. John H. Wilder of Chattanooga, Tenn. Of the magnificence of this view a later chronicler has this to say: "That view from the Roan eclipses everything I have ever seen in the White, Green, Catskill and Virginia mountains.
On Monday they "proceeded on between the head of Rock creek and Doe river, and encamped in a low gap between these two streams. The next day they went five or six miles to the foot of the Iron mountain to a place they called Strother's Camp, where they had some good songs, "then raped [wrapped] ourselves up in our blankets and slep sound till this morning.
Vance and Neely went to the Limestone settlements for a pilot, returned to us on the line at two o'clock with a Mr. Collier as pilot and two gallons whiskey, we stop, drank our own health and proceeded on the line. Ascended a steep spur of the Unaker mountain, got into a bad laurel thicket, cut our way some distance. Night came on, we turned off and camped at a very bad place, it being a steep laurelly hollow," but the whiskey had such miraculous powers that it made the place "tolerably comfortable.
On Thursday the 13th, if they were superstitious, the expected bad luck happened; for here they were informed that for the next two or three days' march the pack-horses could not proceed on the linethat is, could not follow the extreme height of the mountain crest. This was a calamity indeed; but what was the result? How did these men meet it? We read how:. We continued the line through a bad laurel thicket to the top of the Unaker mountain and along the same about three miles and camped at a bad laurelly branch. It rained hard. We encamped on the top of the mountain half a mile from water and had an uncomfortable evening.
It seems that the information Mr. Collier had given "respecting the Unaker mountain was false," and Mr. Strother prevailed upon the commissioners to discharge him on Saturday the 15th of June. They then crossed the Nolechucky "where it breaks through the Unaker or Iron mountain. Here, too, it being again found "impracticable to take horses from this place on the line to the Bald mountain, Mr. Henry, the chain-bearers and markers, took provisions on their backs [and] proceeded on the line and the horses went round by the Greasy Cove and met the rest of the company on Sunday on the top of the Bald mountain, where we tarried till Tuesday morning.
One cannot help wondering why they "tarried" here so long; but no one who has ever visited that "Greasy Cove" and shared the hospitality of its denizens need long remain without venturing a guess; for it is a pleasant place to be, with the "red banks of Chucky" still crumbling in the bend of the river and the ravens croaking from their cliffs among the fastnesses of the Devil's Looking Glass looming near.
Robert Henry had gone to get Robert Love as a pilot; and a few years later he married Love's daughter Dorcas. From the Bald mountain, now in Yancey county, it seems that Col. Love became their pilot; and five or six miles further on in "a low gap between the head of Indian creek and the waters of the south fork of Laurel, we encamped and called it Vance's Camp.
This Bald is sometimes called the Grier Bald from the fact that David Grier, a hermit, lived upon it for thirty-two years. David Vance refused to marry him, built himself a log house here in , just three years after Colonel Vance had passed the spot, and it is probable Grier first heard of it through this gentleman. In a quarrel over his land he killed a man named Holland Higgins and was acquitted on the ground of insanity "and returned home to meet his death at the hands of one of Holland's friends.
On Wednesday the 19th of June, after having suffered severely the previous night from gnats, they went to "Boone's Cove, between the waters of Laurel and Indian creeks," while on the 20th they had to pass over steep and rocky and brushy knobs, with water scarce and a considerable distance from the line. All day Friday their horses suffered from want of water and food, part of the way being impassable for horses; while on Saturday it took them "four hours and 23 minutes" to cut their way one and one-fourth miles to the top of the mountain, where, after getting through the laurel, they "came into an open flat on top of Beech mountain where we camped till Monday at a good spring and excellent range for our horses.
At any rate, they knew they were nearing the end of their long and arduous journey, for they had now reached the waters of Paint creek, which they must have known was in the neighborhood of the "Painted Rock," their destination. The Barnett Station referred to above was probably Barnard's old stock stand on the French Broad river, five or six miles below Marshall. After losing their way on the 25th and "having a very uncomfortable time of it" on Paint creek, they got on the "right ridge from the place we got off of it and proceeded on the line five miles and encamped between the waters of F.
This morning is cloudy and hasey. The Commissioners being anctoous to get on to the Painted Rock started us early"; but they took a wrong ridge again and had to return and spend an uncomfortable evening. However, on Friday; the 28th day of June, 1 7 99, they reached the Painted Rock at last and measured its height, finding it to be " feet three inches high from the top to the base," that "it rather projects out," and that "the face of the rock bears but few traces of its having formerly been painted, owing to its being smoked by pine knots and other wood from a place at its base where travellers have frequently camped.
In the year it was not much smoked, the pictures of some humans, wild beasts, fish and fowls were to be seen plainly made with red paint, some of them 20 and 30 feet from its base. How much more satisfactory this last sentence would have been if he had only added: "I saw them. Broad was explored by white men, been a place of Publick Notoriety. This is the next to the concluding sentence in this quaint and charming narrative-a narrative that one hundred and fifteen years after it was penned can still be read with more interest than many of the so-called "best sellers" of the present day.
But it is in the very last sentence that one begins to suspect that John Strother was at that time a bachelor, for we read:. The Company set out for home to which place I wish them a safe arrival and happy reception, as for myself I stay at the springs to get clear of the fatigue of the Tour. One wonders whose bright eyes made his "fatigue" so much greater than that of the others and kept him so long at the springs. North Carolina having acquired by the treaty of February 27, , all lands from the mouth of the Hiwassee "to the first hill which closes in on said river, about two miles above Hiwassee Old Town; thence along the ridge which divides the waters of the Hiwassee and Little Tellico to the Tennessee river at Talassee; thence along the main channel to the junction of the Cowee and Nanteyalee; thence along the ridge in the fork of said river to the top of the Blue Ridge; thence along the Blue Ridge to the Unicoy Turnpike road; thence by straight line to the nearest main source of the Chastatee; thence along its main channel to the Chattahoochee, etc.
To that end it passed, in 2 R. The notes of W. Davenport's field book give as detailed an account of the progress of these commissioners and surveyors as did John Strother's in ; but as they met no one between these two points there was little to relate. The same or another party might follow the same route to-day and they would meet no one.
But Mr. Davenport does not call the starting point a "turnpike.
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Laws , ch. But there was a road of some kind for Bishop Asbury mentions crossing Cataloochee on a log in December Rhinehart, dying of milk-sick, three miles down the Bradley fork of Ocona Luftee to a big poplar, where Rhinehart died. Near here, although they did not know it then, an alum cave was one clay to be discovered, out of which, in the lean years of the Southern Confederacy, Col.
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William H. Thomas and his Indians were to dig for alum, copperas, saltpeter and a little magnesia to be used in the hospitals of this beleaguered land, in default of standard medicines which had been made contraband of war. Here, too, Arnold Guyot, the distinguished professor of geology and physical geography of Princeton college, came in , following Prof. Buckley, and made a series of barometric measurements, not alone of the Great Smoky mountain chain, but also of that little known and rugged group of peaks wholly in Tennessee, known as the Bull Head mountains.
Surveyor Davenport noted a low gap through which "if there ever is a wagon road through the Big Smoky mountain, it must go through this gap. Thomas, with his "sappers and miners," composed of Cherokee Indians and Union men of East Tennessee, did make a so-called wagon road through this gap, now called Collins gap; and through it, in January, , General Robert B. Vance carried a section of artillery, dragging the dismounted cannon, not on skids, but over the bare stones, only to be captured himself with a large part of his command at Causbey creek two days later.
But no other vehicle has ever passed that frightful road, save only the front wheels of a wagon, as it is dangerous even to walk over its precipitous and rockribbed course. No other road has ever been attempted, and this one has been abandoned, except by horsemen and footmen, for years. Not even a wagon track is visible. On the 7th of August they came at the 31st mile to Meigs' Post.
At the 34th mile they came in view of Brasstown; and next day, at the 45th mile, they reached the head of Little river, and must have been in plain view of Tuckaleechee Cove and near Thunderhead mountain both immortalized by hiss Mary N Murfree Charles Egbert Craddock in her stories of the Tennessee mountains. On the 11th they were at the head of Abram's creek, which flows through Cade's Cove into the Little Tennessee at that gem of all mountain coves, the Harden farm at Talassee ford. On the 13th they came to a "red oak … at Equeneetly path to Cade's cove.
Of course they did not still any! On this same unlucky 13th, they came to the top of a bald spot in sight of Talassee Old Town, at the 57th mile. This is the Harden farm spoken of above, and is a tract of about acres of level and fertile land. On the 16th they passed over Parsons and Gregory Balds. On this day also they crossed the Little Tennessee river "to a large white pine on the south side of the river at the mouth of a large creek, 65th mile. One of the marks still visible is that made on the 19th, at the 86th mile, "a holly tree … near the head of middle fork of Tellico river.
Also Laws , ch. Roberts, who lives under the Devil's Looking Glass, says that a healthy white oak tree, under which Hall was standing when he fired at Bryson, began to die immediately and is now quite dead. On the 20th of August they were at "the 89th mile, at the head of Beaver Dam" creek of Cherokee county, N.
On that day, at the 93d mile, they came to "the trading path leading from the Valley Towns to the Overhill settlements," reaching the 95th mile on that path before they paused. On the 24th, at the 96th mile, they were on the top of the Unicoy mountain, and on the same day they reached "the hickory and rock at the wagon road, the st mile, at the end of the Unicoy mountain.
Governor Tryon had run a boundary-line between the back settlements of the Carolinas and the Cherokee huntting-grounds. But hunters and traders would persist in wandering to the west of this line and sometimes they were killed. Almost as important as the State lines were the Indian boundary lines; but most of them were natural boundaries and have given but little trouble. According to the map of the "Former Territorial Limits of the Cherokee Indians," accompanying the Fifth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology, , there were three lines run to establish the boundary between the Cherokees and the ceded territory under the treaty of October 2, ; the first of which was run by Captain Butler in , and extending from "Meigs' post on the Great Stone mountain to a fork of the Keowee river in South Carolina known as Little river.
But, according to the text Fifth Eth. But, "this survey seems not to have been accepted by the War Department, for on the 3d of June, , instructions were issued by the Secretary of War to Return J. Meigs, as commissioner, to superintend the execution of the survey of this same portion of the boundary. Thomas Freeman was appointed surveyor.
Two of these were branches of the French Broad and the other of the Keowee. If it were run to the branch of the Keowee river, it would leave ten or twelve Indian villages within the State of North Carolina. Hood, of Knoxville, Tenn. A map of the survey of Qualla Boundary, by M. Hawkins and Gen. Hawkins , with Mr. Pickens, with Col. Kilpatrick as surveyor, locating the remainder of it. This statement is verified so far as Gen. Pickens is concerned by his own written statement. George H. Smathers, Esq. Stringfield of the same place writes that he measured nine and one half miles southwestwardly of Porter's gap "and found Meigs' post, a torn down stone pile on the top of a smooth mountain ….
Many of these old marked trees can still be found all through Jackson county, on the waters of Scott's creek, Cane or Wurry-hut, Caney Fork, Cold or Tennessee creek, and others. Mingus, then 92 years old, Eph. Connor and others, that he was on the Meigs line. The name has been handed down through five generations. Fifth Eth. But as the Cherokees still continued hostile South Carolina sent Col. Grant, who conquered them in , and concluded a treaty by which "the boundaries between the Indians and the settlements were declared to be the sources of the great rivers flowing into the Atlantic ocean.
This treaty remained in force till the treaty of and the purchase of to the northern part of that boundary, or the land lying west of the Blue Ridge and north of the Nollechucky river. It remained in force as to all land west and south of that territory till November 28 , called the treaty of Hopewell. The Virginia authorities in the early part of concluded a treaty with the Cherokees whereby a boundary line was fixed between them, which was to run west from White Top mountain, which left those settlers on the Watauga river within the Indian limits, whereupon, as a measure of temporary relief, they leased for a period of eight years all the country on the waters of the Watauga river.
Hopewell is on the Keowee river, fifteen miles above its junction with the Tugaloo. It was here that the treaty that was to move the boundary line west of the Blue Ridge was made. This line began six miles southeast of Greenville, Tenn. This "War Trace" was the route followed by Gen. Griffith Rutherford, when, in the summer of , he marched 2, men through the Swannanoa gap, passed over the French Broad at a place still known as the "War Ford"; continued up the valley of Hominy creek, leaving Pisgah mountain to the left, and crossing Pigeon river a little below the mouth of East Fork; thence through the mountains to Richland creek, above the present town of Waynesville, etc.
From the point where the line struck the War Trace it was to go "to the South Carolina Indian boundary. Asheville and Hendersonville to the South Carolina line, though its exact location was rendered "unnecessary by reason of the ratification in February, , of the Cherokee treaty concluded July 2, , wherein the Indian boundary line was withdrawn a considerable distance to the west. Meantime, however, North Carolina being a sovereign State, bound to the Confederation of the Union only by the loose articles of confederation, in , set apart an Indian reservation of its own; which ran from the mouth of the Big Pigeon to its source and thence along the ridge between it and the waters of the Tuckaseigee Code N.
This, however, does not seem to have been supported by any treaty. The State had simply moved the Indian boundary line twenty miles westward to the Pigeon river at Canton. The treaty of was not satisfactory to the Indians and another treaty supplemental thereto was made February 17, , which in its turn was followed by one of January 21, , and another of October 2, They all call for what was afterwards run and called the Meigs and Freeman line, treated fully under that head.
This treaty cedes all land from the point where the Hiwassee river empties into the Tennessee, thence along the first ridge which closes in on said river, two miles above Hiwassee Old Town; thence along the ridge which divides the waters of Hiwassee and Little Tellico to the Tennessee river at Talassee; thence along the main channel to the junction of the Nanteyalee; thence along the ridge in the fork of said river to the top of the Blue Ridge; thence along the Blue Ridge to the Unicoy Turnpike, etc.
This moved the line twenty miles west of what is now Franklin. This was the treaty for their removal, treated in the chapter on the Eastern Band. During the year while Judge H. Ewart was acting as District Judge of the U. Court at Asheville, some citizens of New Jersey obtained a judgment against the heirs of the late Messer Fain of Cherokee county for certain land in the disputed territory, known as the Rainbow Country because of its shape. The sheriff of Monroe county, Tennessee, armed with a writ of possession from the Tennessee court, entered the house occupied by one of Fain's sons and took possession.
Fain had him arrested for assault and trespass, and he sued out a writ of habeas corpus before Judge Ewart, who decided the case in favor of Fain; but the sheriff appealed to the Circuit Court of Appeals for the 4th circuit, and. Judge Ewart was reversed. Thereupon Fain sued out a writ of certiorari before the Supreme Court of the United States; but after the writ had been granted Fain decided not to pay for the printing of the large record, and the case was dismissed for want of prosecution. This was one of the forerunners to litigation with Tennessee. There is now pending before the Supreme Court of the United States a controversy between the State of Tennessee and the State of North Carolina over what is known as the "Rainbow" country at the head of Tellico creek, Cherokee county.
Tennessee claims that the line should have followed the main top of the Unaka mountains instead of leaving the main ridge and crossing one prong of Tellico creek which rises west of the range. This is probably what should have been done if the commissioners who ran the line in had followed the text of the statute literally; but they left the main top and crossed this prong of Tellico creek, and their report and fieldnotes, showing that this had been done were returned to their respective States and the line as run and marked was adopted by Tennessee as well as by North Carolina.
In , Gov. Scales, under the law providing for the appointment of a commission to meet another from Tennessee to determine at what point on the Nollechucky river the State line crosses, appointed Captain James M. Gudger for North Carolina, J. Neal being his surveyor; but there was a disagreement from the outset between the North Carolina and the Tennessee commissioners. The latter insisted on going south from the high peak north of the Nollechucky river, which brought them to the deep hole at the mouth of lost Cove creek, at least three quarters of a mile east of the point at which the line run for the North Carolina commissioner reached the same stream, which was a few hundred yards below the mouth of Devil's creek.
The North Carolina commissioner claimed to have the original field-notes of the surveyors, and followed them strictly. Neither side would yield to the other, and the line remains as it was originally run in 17 See Pub. McKesson, N. The line between these two counties and Tennessee was ordered located by the county surveyors of the counties named according to the calls of the act of See Ch.
Though the mountains were not settled during colonial days except north of the ridge between the Toe and Watauga rivers, the people who ultimately crossed the Blue Ridge lived under colonial laws and customs, or descended from those pioneers who did. Therefore, colonial times in North Carolina, especially in the Piedmont country, should be of interest to those who would know how our more remote ancestors lived under English rule. This should be especially true of those venturesome spirits who first crossed the Blue Ridge and explored the mountain regions of our State, what-ever may have been the object of their quest.
For "when the first Continental Congress began its sittings the only frontiersmen west of the mountains and beyond the limits of continuous settlement within the old thirteen colonies were the two or three hundred citizens of the Little Watauga commonwealth. In these circumstances they voluntarily formed the first republican government in America. For the first written compact that, west of the mountains, Was framed for the guidance of liberty's feet, Was writ here by letterless men in whose bosoms, Undaunted, the heart of a paladin beat.
There were eight Lords Proprietors to whom Carolina was originally granted in But he did not buy the interest of the Earl of Granville, who refused to sell; though he had to give up his share in the government of the colony. Hence, grants from Earl of Granville are as valid as those from the crown; for in his share was given him in land.
It included about one-half of-the State, and he collected rents from it till , his dishonest agents giving the settlers on it great trouble. The Moravians were a band of religious brethren who came to America to do mission work among the Indians and to gain a full measure of religious freedom.
UNFINISHED BUSINESS VOLUME 4 COMPILED & MIXED BY LUKE SOLOMON
Their plan was to build a central town on a large estate and to sell the land around to the members of the brotherhood. The town was to contain shops, mills, stores, factories, churches and schools. After selecting several pieces of lowlands, Bishop Spangenberg bought from the Earl of Granville a large tract in the bounds of the present county of Forsyth, and called the tract Wachovia, meaning "meadow stream. Spangenberg; while the Spangenberg whose diary is quoted from extensively in the next few pages signs himself I.
He will be called the Bishop, nevertheless, because he "spake as one having authority. V, Colonial Records pp. Spangenberg; of the Moravian church. He is the first white man who crossed the Blue Ridge in North Carolina, so far as the records show, except those who had prolonged the Virginia State line in He, with his co-religionist, Brother I. Antes, left Edenton September 13, , for the purpose of inspecting and selecting land for settling Moravian immigrants. The land was to have been granted by Earl Granville, and the surveyor, Mr. Churton, who accompanied the expedition, had instructions from that proprietor to survey the lands, and as he was to be paid three pounds sterling for each 5,acre tract, he was averse to surveying tracts of smaller acreage.
His instructions limited him also to north and south and east and west lines, which frequently compelled the good Bishop to include mountains in his boundaries that he did not particularly desire. Having run three lines this surveyor declined to run the fourth, and the Bishop notes that fact in order to save his brethern the trouble of searching for lines that were never run or marked. The surveyor, however, did survey for the Bishop smaller tracts than those containing 5, acres, though reluctantly.
Booklet, Vol. IV, No. This Quaker was Bishop Spangenberg. He reached on November 12, , the "neighborhood of what may be called Indian Pass. The next settlement from here is that of Jonathan Weiss, more familiarly known as Jonathan Perrot. This man is a hunter and lives 20 miles from here. There are many hunters about here, who live like Indians: they kill many deer, selling their hides, and thus live without much work. Our survey begins seven or eight miles from the mouth of the 3d river where it flows into the Catawba.
What lies further down the river has already been taken up. The other [western] line of the survey runs close to the Blue Ridge…. This piece consists of 6, acres. We can have at least eight settlements in this tract, and each will have water, range, etc. There were no roads save those made by buffaloes. The surveyor was stopped by six Cherokees on a hunt, but they soon became friendly. November 24th they were five miles from Table Rock, which with the Hawk's Bill is so conspicuous from Morganton, where they surveyed the fifth tract of land, of or acres.
Haynes is a writer and curator, originally from Toronto, now based in New York City. His latest body of work, With So Little To Be Sure Of, interrogates the systems and industries that perpetuate and uphold operational practices, legislation, and ideologies that normalize the dehumanization, subjugation, disenfranchisement and Can artwork that is so heavily triggering catalyze anything more than lethargic indifference or rage? Is the contemporary art world stuck in a Black-death-porn loop, that reveres and collects portrayals of violence more than depictions of Black joy?
I also thought about definitions—long histories of supremacist. How can an artwork that documents centuries of atrocity be anything but horrific? Each painting is a spectacle, a window that peers into an unsettling scene in which surreal figurations have been subject to ruthless acts, with some rendered inept by the abuses they have suffered. Williams presents conceptual notions about space and the figure that have distinct narratives, situated within American history, as well as global colonial histories.
The characters Williams illustrates are embedded with familiar allegories from American popular culture, radical political satire and African cosmologies. The artist also draws from classical architecture, and stylistic approaches engaged by Post Impressionists, Pointillists and Spanish Renaissance artists like El Greco.
Archival prints of American lynchings have an especially resonant influence on the collection. Black men are largely portrayed as jesters, hanging bodies, or passive and humiliated victims. The act of re-envisioning stereotypical or defiled Black characters recalls the artistry of Michael Ray Charles, whose repurposed 19th century minstrel propaganda works to expose both the subtle and overt dehumanizing characterizations of race in western popular culture.
Or Emory Douglas who developed empowering imagery for the Black Panther Party that likened corrupt police officers to pigs, and showcased Black bodies as valiant heroes within their communities. Williams also activates the symbology of the pig to represent whiteness, not just as a body, or subject devoid of racial distinction, but as a defiant effigy for the greater apparatus in which America functions and enforces its power through.
In some instances, the pigs surround and attack Black bodies. In other scenes, Black representations tame the pigs as if they were lions in a Barnum and Bailey side show. Williams critiques power by displaying it as an excessive physicality between polarized subjects: the victim and the victimizer. This power play is particularly apparent in the paintings Stop, , Resistance, , and Resistance II, In Stop, three figures, two pig-policemen and an African American man, struggle at the forefront of a tense scene.
The frame traps the man between the pigs, as his body, head and one of his hands are contorted into painful angular positions. In both compositions, the pigs are depicted as gigantic monsters, stripped of power, and controlled by the jester, who is victorious despite being dwarfed by the size of the pig-policemen. Each character is a hyper-realized personification, an identity flattened of nuance or complexity to reify racial stereotypes. The work is blatant and jarring because it seeks to declare unabashedly that violence against Black bodies is pandemic.
To view. One of the most alarming aspects of the collection is the style Williams engages to reveal the violence. Barbarism is simulated as bright, whimsical acts that recall the aesthetics of animations from the early twentieth century. Many of the animations produced by major and independent companies in the s and 50s left an indelible imprint on Williams, not only because of the rampant, often joyous displays of violence, but also the normalization of racially insensitive depictions of non-white figurations.
The colorful palette Williams employs and the glee with which the caricatures impose their power, invokes a similarly tantalizing and disgusting abjection. In the painting, Mosaic, , a Black artist stands painting at the sidelines of a dense landscape filled with smiling portraits of pig-policemen. Variations of red mosaic engulf the canvas. Smaller frames depicting distressing scenes cut through the mosaic: a pig-policeman shooting a man, a decapitated head, a battered man.
Mosaic speaks to the layered ways violence against Black bodies is framed by national media outlets; the policeman is always determined to be innocent despite evidence of misconduct. Williams joins a controversial canon alongside other contemporary artists like Dread Scott, Kara Walker, and Makode Linde, among others, whose stark imagery, sourced from painful colonial histories, elicits a critical engagement between the viewers and the traumas portrayed. To view their works is to be implicated in brutal narratives that fostered the development of powerful nation-states around the world.
In the last decade, the evolution and accessibility of handheld recording devices and social media archives have escalated the documentation and global relay of site-specific traumas. The ability to document and share instances that once happened in isolation and at the mercy of the testimony of police officers, has facilitated new hopes for real accountability.
This documentation has also increased the immediacy of the gaze, and incites stark polarity in the responsiveness of viewers who are either emboldened to engage in organized collective disobedience or lulled into numb disinvestment. Will they accept that violence against Black bodies is not imagined?
If so, will they continue to peaceably watch as it occurs? The blunt realities visualized in the series are difficult to ignore. Bearing witness is a confrontational. Sandra Bland, recalls the horrid and avoidable death of the activist and educator who died mysteriously while in police custody at a Waller County Texas jail. The painting, Sandra Bland shows a nude woman, hands and arms bound behind her back as she is consumed by a large blue-eyed white. Small Black bodies, limbs and eyes ooze out of the pores and orifices of the massive head, formed by an amalgamation of what it has consumed.
My experience of viewing was one of visceral nausea. Every part of my being tensed and grieved over the hopelessness of the image. Please visit aicausa. Any quotes are from interviews with the author unless otherwise specified. No part of this essay may be reproduced without prior consent from the author. With So Little To Be Sure Of documents white supremacist violence as an all-encompassing, cannibalizing monstrosity that devours itself as it consumes Others. Histories of violence are mirrored in the contemporary moment. The lynching of recurs in New Hampshire in Enslavement in is echoed in the labor models upheld within the contemporary Prison Industrial Complex.
The Black Codes of the Jim Crow South have evolved into racial profiling, stop-and-frisk, and minimum sentencing legislation. History is now. Williams engages this vicious cycle, mocks it, and displays it with a striking peculiarity that tugs at the nonsensical realities that allow the violence to recur. With So Little To Be Sure Of haunts our cultural imagination with the nightmares that African Diasporic identities have been forced to adapt to and survive.
No one is safe. All voyeurs, including the artist, are charged and queried. Angela N. Carroll is an artist-archivist, a purveyor and investigator of art history and culture in Washington, D. CUE Art Foundation's programs are made possible with the generous support of foundations, government agencies, corporations, and individuals. Catalogue accompanying February 23 - March 29, exhibition. Berger Thomas G.
Devine Thomas K. Hsu John S. The past few years have brought about the evidence on social media of a police force out of control. Armed with military uniforms and gear, it becomes a questionable force in its current state, which may also encourage outliers such as the Neo Nazis and KKK to penetrate its ranks.
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