The Woodfin community, like many other Buncombe County communities is named for a man who enslaved human beings. If you’ve followed along in this series, you’ve probably recognized that to be a common theme among communities; they’re named for people of extravagant wealth. Wealth earned on the backs of enslaved black people. Indeed, our county
“Now Absalom in his lifetime had taken and reared up for himself a pillar, which is in the king’s dale: …and he called the pillar after his own name: and it is called unto this day, Absalom’s place.” 2 Samuel 18:18 Though he died in 1838, by 1887 Absalom Dillingham managed, in his own way,
The Western North Carolina Railroad was chartered in 1852 by the North Carolina General Assembly. A railway was to be constructed from Salisbury to some point on the French Broad River beyond the Blue Ridge. By 1859 the road had reached Morganton, a distance of 84 miles. [Asheville News July 14, 1859.] The Western North
As the Asheville community looks at how to best remedy its lack of recognition of the African American community and their contributions and sacrifices that made Asheville what it is today, it is more important than ever to know MORE history. What did slavery look like in Asheville and Buncombe County? These are a few notes taken
As part of local commemoration of the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation, the Center for Diversity Education at UNC Asheville worked with the Buncombe County Register of Deeds to compile a database of documents recording the trade of people as slaves in Buncombe County. A video created as part of this project has won two national awards.
We depend on our patrons for donations. This 1897 J. M. McCanless portrait of a black nurse midwife was loaned for scanning by Dianna Hays. We also receive valuable information from patrons. Ms. Hays told us that the baby was her grandmother Pauline Moore Bourne, daughter of clothing store owner M. V. Moore, and that Pauline