Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Asheville's Origin, The Civil War and The Nationwide Recognition

Asheville's Origin, The Civil War and The Nationwide Recognition

Where do I start with Asheville? Just thinking about this city opens up a lot of great topics! Asheville have a rich history, arts, theater, food, beer and so much more!

Some of the most watched films like Dirty Dancing, Last of the Mohicans,  Richie Rich, Forrest Gump,  Patch Adams, and The Hunger Games were partially filmed in Asheville.

Before its Nationwide recognition, Asheville had gone through and endured a lot of hardships. Thus, giving them a diverse past and became the key for Asheville's success: in fact the reason Asheville has so many wonderful art deco buildings is because it was so poor people could not afford to tare them down thus preserving them to last. Here is a brief history of Asheville.

Asheville, North Carolina

It is the largest city in Western North Carolina, and the 11th largest city in North Carolina and quite progressive.

It is home to the  United States National Climatic Data Center (NCDC), the world's largest active archive of weather data.

County: Buncombe

Population: 87,236 (as of 2013)

Climate: Subtropical Climate

A mountain city at 2100 feet rising to 3500 feet

Ashville's Origin

Image Source: en.wikipedia.org
Before the arrival of the Europeans, the land where Asheville now exists lay within the boundaries of the Cherokee Nation. The area was used as an open hunting ground until the middle of the 19th century. The history of Asheville, as a town, began in 1784. In that year, Colonel Samuel Davidson and his family settled in the Swannanoa Valley, redeeming a soldier's land grant from the state of North Carolina. Soon after building a log cabin at the bank of Christian Creek, Davidson was lured into the woods by a band of Cherokee hunters and killed. Davidson's wife, child and female slave fled on foot overnight to Davidson's Fort (named after Davidson's father General John Davidson) 16 miles away.
In response to the killing, Davidson's twin brother Major William Davidson and brother-in-law Colonel Daniel Smith formed an expedition to retrieve Samuel Davidson's body and avenge his murder. Months after the expedition, Major Davidson and other members of his extended family returned to the area and settled at the mouth of Bee Tree Creek.
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asheville,_North_Carolina


The Civil War

Image Source:www.vwmin.org
Asheville, with a population of approximately 2,500 by 1861, remained relatively untouched by the Civil War, but contributed a number of soldiers to the Confederate States Army, and a substantially smaller number of soldiers to the Union.For a short time, the Enfield Rifle Manufacturing facility was located in the town. The war came to Asheville as an afterthought, when the "Battle of Asheville" was fought in early April 1865 at the present-day site of the University of North Carolina at Asheville. In late April 1865 troops under the command of Union General. Stoneman captured Asheville. Known as the Stoneman's Raid.  After a negotiated departure, the troops nevertheless subsequently returned and plundered and burned a number of Confederate supporters' homes in Asheville.

Image Source: www.cmhpf.org
Asheville experienced a slow but steady growth as industrial plants increased in number and size, and new residents built homes. Textile mills were established and plants were set up for the manufacture of wood and mica products, foodstuffs, and other commodities.
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asheville,_North_Carolina

The Great Depression

Image Source: www.ourstate.com

The Great Depression, the period of Asheville's history made world-famous by the novel Look Homeward, Angel,( Thomas Wolfe) hit Asheville quite hard. On November 20, 1930, eight local banks failed. Only Wachovia remained open with infusions of cash from Winston-Salem. Because of the explosive growth of the previous decades, the per capita debt owed by the city (through municipal bonds) was the highest in the nation.
By 1929, both the city and Buncombe County had incurred over $56 million in bonded debt to pay for a wide range of municipal and infrastructure improvements, including City Hall, the water system, Beaucatcher Tunnel, and Asheville High School. Rather than apply to default, the city paid those debts over a period of fifty years. From the start of the depression through the 1980s, economic growth in Asheville was slow. During this time of financial stagnation, most of the buildings in the downtown district remained unaltered- boarded up and preserved. That is why Asheville has one of the most impressive, comprehensive collections of Art Deco architecture in the United States, short of Miami.
Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asheville,_North_Carolina

  The Nationwide recognition


Asheville is listed  on almost all top 10 lists for a variety of things:

Asheville is listed  on almost all top 10 lists for a variety of things:

"A New Age Mecca" (CBS News' Eye On America, 1996)

"New FreakCapital of the U.S." (Rolling Stone, 2000)

"The 50 Most Alive Places To Be" (Modern Maturity, 2000)

The "Happiest City for Women" (Self, 2002)

One of the "Best Places to Reinvent Your Life" (AARP Magazine, 2003)

One of the "Best Outside Towns" (Outside Magazine, 2006)

One of the "Top Seven Places to Live in the U.S." (Frommer's, 2007)

One of the "10 Most Beautiful Places in America" (Good Morning America, 2011)

One of the "25 Best Places for Business and Careers" (Forbes, 2012)

One of "20 Great Cities For Writers" (Flavorwire, 2013)

Asheville has been listed as one of the "Top 25 Small Cities for Art" in AmericanStyle magazine's annual list from 2000 to 2012.

Reigned the champion "Beer City USA" each year from 2009 to 2012. No sporting over 20 micro- breweries dotting the downtown, with major brands like New Belgium Brewing Company and The Sierra Nevada.

In his 2008 book, The Geography of Bliss, author Eric Weiner cited Asheville as one of the happiest places in the United States.

Ready for a visit? we welcome visitors from all over the world!

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