One Mile from Late 18th Century Treasures
If you were one of the large black Ravens who calls this valley home, you could fly one mile due north of my house, over Brushy Top Mountain, and land in a tree facing a late 18th century log farmhouse that looks as fresh as the day it was built. In fact, there are at least three of these historic houses within a half mile of each other, and a walk along unpaved Haynes Road will take you close to all three.
Otter Creek flows out of my valley, but just over the mountain, Ham Creek collects the water from the north side of Oak, Brushy Top and Bear Gap Mountains.
Brushy Top and Bear Gap above Ham Creek send nutrient rich water to these bottomlands where corn is the major crop. This scene is from September 1st as the corn is almost ready to harvest. Just in the distant woods is an 1835 wood frame farmhouse that was moved from a spot a mile away, and lovingly restored into the two story guest cottage that it is today.
This house is part of “The Cottages at Spring House Farm” http://www.springhousefarm.com , a secluded collection of cabins deep in the woods that can be rented by the night. The main house is the restored 1826 Albertus Ledbetter post and beam farmhouse that is on the National Registry. One of my five neighbors in this valley descends from the McCurry family who purchased the Ledbetter House in 1921. Check out this recent feature from North Carolina Public Television.
The shoulders of Haynes Road are lined with wildflowers this time of year. The sign is indicative of the old families who settled this valley.
Almost at the end of the road is this late 18th century log house. Although I don’t know when the house was built, it mirrors the two chimney style of the 1790 log house where my family reunion was held last month in South Carolina. Situated on a hill below Bear Gap Mountain, the house has been restored, and has a wood frame “guest” cabin, below, in the woods nearby.