Two hundred years ago, early explorers of the Southern Appalachians pondered the piles of stone they encountered at “all the gaps in the mountains.” While most of those cairns have disappeared, they remain a mystery. more

Aug 1, 2017 12:00 AM Good Reads

When the total eclipse descends on Cherokee, North Carolina, this August, a tradition reaching back thousands of years will live on. more

Jun 1, 2017 12:00 AM Features

Oconaluftee Indian Village

Margaret Hester photo

For many of us, fragments of images or threadbare associations are exactly how we create memory. Even brain research tells us that we learn by forming connections to what we already know. more

Apr 1, 2017 12:00 AM Sweet Appalachia

When I was 4 years old I saw a cobra edging out from behind a wooden strawberry barrel in our garden. Naturally I was certain of what I had seen, despite the fact that I was not even on the same continent as any known, free roaming, cobra. more

Feb 1, 2017 12:00 AM Sweet Appalachia

Made In The Smokies

Kathryn Ray photo

Whether toiling in tucked-away mountain workshops or bustling tourist studios, the region’s best artisans carry on traditions that have been passed down through the generations—oftentimes in their own families. more

Oct 1, 2016 12:00 AM Features


Mandy Newham-Cobb illustration

Every December 31st, while millions of Americans from Maine to California resolve to lose the last few pinches of pudge, Southerners have already gotten a jump (or, rather, a hoppin’ john) on the rest of the country. more

Dec 1, 2015 12:00 AM Good Reads 1 Comments


Mandy Newham-Cobb illustration

As with most things good and holy—Velveeta cheese, Dunkin’ Donuts coffee—dream catchers tend to churn my stomach when overconsumed. Don’t get me wrong: I love the message behind them, that we can filter good dreams from bad. more

Jun 1, 2015 12:00 AM Good Reads

Whether you’re on the trail of warblers or wildflowers this spring in North Carolina’s High Country, you’re sure to work up an appetite. And just because you’re stalking songbirds doesn’t mean you have to eat like one, too. more

Apr 1, 2015 12:00 AM Mountain Explorer

“‘We’re only doing this for your own good’—words that hide a multitude of sins,” surmised Samuel Carter III in his historical account of the crimes committed against the Cherokee. more

Oct 1, 2014 12:00 AM Features


Courtesy of East Riverside Photographs, D.H. Ramsey Library, Special Collections, UNC-Asheville, Asheville, N.C.

Enslaved Africans and free people of color and their descendants were sparsely located in the cultural region known as Appalachia, but don’t let the seeming invisibility fool you. The African cultural heritage is alive and well in Appalachia. more

Oct 1, 2013 12:00 AM Good Reads

Cherokee fish weir

Becky Johnson photo

Paddlers, fishermen, or those who have enjoyed a cool swimming hole, have probably seen a fish weir—though they may not have recognized it. Fish weirs are structures built within a stream or river that are designed to route and ultimately trap fish. more

Aug 1, 2013 12:00 AM Features

Cherokee marker trees

Donated photo

Hundreds of years before a network of highways and interstates crisscrossed the country, a system of trails connected the Cherokee to Indians throughout the nation. Marking those trails were oddities that hikers may still encounter today. more

Apr 1, 2013 12:00 AM Features 6 Comments

Building the basics

Becky Johnson photo

When Samantha Crowe-Hernandez packs her three young children into the car for a Sunday afternoon visit with their great- grandparents, she’s bearing a special gift—a living testament to the Cherokee people’s resilience. more

Dec 1, 2012 12:00 AM Features

Pip and Otto were the youngest of Gilead Tattnal’s 24 known offspring, but their older siblings couldn’t, or wouldn’t, take them in. Life at the orphanage is rough, but the boys have each other, until the morning Pip awakes to find Otto missing. more

Jun 1, 2012 12:00 AM Good Reads

Cherokee, N.C., is a nation unto itself and offers visitors a chance to learn about the native culture that originated in the Southern Appalachians. It is the home of the Eastern Band of Cherokee and also known as the Qualla Boundary. more

Jun 1, 2012 12:00 AM Departments

Watty Chiltoskie

Photo by Edward DuPuy, courtesy of Southern Highlands Craft Guild and WCU Hunter Library

Individuals with an interest in the region’s past can now search two new online archives devoted to Cherokee culture and the evolution of travel in Western North Carolina courtesy of Western Carolina University’s Hunter Library. more

Feb 1, 2012 12:00 AM Departments

Lloyd Arneach was born and raised on the Qualla Boundary, home of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians. His father served for a time as vice chief of the Eastern Band, and his mother was the first woman to be elected to the Tribal Council. more

Dec 1, 2011 12:00 AM Departments

Bob Reed

Cherokee Travel & Tourism photos

Though many boys play cowboys and Indians, few get to be the real thing. But Bob Reed, at the age of 15, learned from a family friend that he was a full-blooded Native American after spending most of his childhood unaware of his heritage. more

Oct 1, 2011 12:00 AM Features

Fly fishing

Mark Haskett photo

The 2011 U.S. National Fly Fishing Championship will be held this spring from May 19 to 22 in Cherokee. About 60 of the nation’s top fly-fishing experts will test their angling skills along nearby stretches of water. more

Apr 1, 2011 12:00 AM Mountain Explorer

When you first see it, perhaps you think it’s bamboo, a non-native species. Actually, it’s river cane (technically, Arundinaria gigantea). The plant was here before the Europeans came into these hills. more

Sep 1, 2009 12:00 AM Features 1 Comments