North Carolina Pioneers

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Mount Mitchell

Mt. Mitchell The dramatic summit of Mount Mitchell is the highest point east of the Mississippi at 6,684 feet. A National park was established and is easily accessible from the observation deck. A network of trails makes it possibe for visitors to explore the scenery up close. Hikers may start at the Black Mountain Campground on the Toe River and hike some 3600 feet and reach the summit after about 5-1/2 miles. The region is difficult to hike and has continuous climbs.

Inheritances: the Preservation of Family Assets

mourning dress It is amazing what can be learned concerning people who lived in the past. Because they did not have modern technology to plow the gardens, build the cities and educate the children is not an indication that they were simple people. Since its founding, this country has endured difficult times. Brave people crossed the seas and built a new world from "scratch." And, amazingly, while the mother country was adding more burdens to their struggles with punishing tariffs during an era when the cost of nails and window panes (for example) for house building were at a premium to transport, this people fought for representation. When they traded with the Dutch, the English forbade it and collected tariffs before the captain went ashore. It is old records and documents which reveal the struggles of colonial living. Inventories of estates count stacks of planed wood taken down off old buildings and stored for later use. Also, bricks, nails and other hardware which carried a premium import price. Funeral items such as gloves, rings and clothing were inherited. Colonialists made use of natural materials and did not throw anything away! And because of diligent conservation, they built homes, communities and towns.

The South Toe River

South Toe River "In coming from Burnsville to this place, I enjoyed two mountain landscapes, which were supremely beautiful and imposing. The first was the northern view of Black Mountain from the margin of the South Toe River, and all its cliffs, defiles, ravines, and peaks seemed as light, dream-like, and airy as the clear blue world in which they floated. The stupendous pile appeared to have risen from the earth with all its glories in their prime, as if to join the newly-risen sun in his passage across the heavens. The middle distance of the landscape was composed of two wood-crowned hills which stood before me like a pair of loving brothers, and then came a luxuriant meadow, where a noble horse was quietly cropping his food; while the immediate foreground of the picture consisted of a marvellously beautiful stream, which glided swiftly by, over a bed of golden and scarlet pebbles. The only sounds that fell upon my ear, as I gazed upon this scene, were the murmurings of a distant water-fall, and the hum of insect wings. The other prospect that I witnessed from the summit of the Blue Ridge, looking in the direction of the Catawba. It was a wilderness of mountains, whose foundations could not be fathomed by the eye, while in the distance, towering above all the peaks, rose the singular and fantastic form of the Table Mountain. Not a sign of the breathing human world could be seen in any direction, and the only living creature which appeared to my view was a solitary eagle, wheeling to and fro far up towards the zenith of the sky." Source: Letters from the Alleghany Mountains by Charles Lanman (1849).

Names of Families in Yancey County Genealogy Records

Yancey County

The western county of Yancey County was established during December of 1833 and was named after Bartlett Yancey of Caswell County, a United States Congressman and Speaker of the Senate. The county seat is Burnsville, North Carolina.

Records Available to Members

  • List of Estates 1853 to 1915