Circa 1880’s…Asheville was a booming mountain metropolitan in the late 19th Century. Its proximity was ideal for both trade and tourism. Located along the banks of the French Broad and Swannanoa Rivers in the very heart of North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, Asheville has always had the aspiration of greatness.
Asheville North Carolina was established in 1792 with the building of the Buncombe County Court House, in a considerably remote location, yet ideally founded at the crossroads of two Cherokee trails. I’m quite confident these trails go back hundreds or maybe thousands of years, long before the Cherokee dominated this region. Most likely these trails were a prehistoric trade route, the rivers were a source for navigation and the geography was that of a great valley surrounded by the high mountaintops.
The Buncombe Turnpike opened the way into this isolated community in 1827. Visitors were drawn to the area to enjoy the pleasures of beautiful vistas, cool mountain breezes and an abundance of sulfur springs. By the late 1800’s health resorts and hotels began popping up and it wasn’t long before the railroad made its way into the valley establishing Asheville as the resort capital of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The arrival of the 20th Century ushered in grand hotels catering to the likes of dignitaries, industrialist and celebrities, setting a movement in tourism that has flowed into the 21st Century.
Asheville is a unique mountain city with beautiful late 19th and early 20th Century architecture and a passion for the cultural arts.