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Two women's recollections of the original cabin when it was a Presbyterian mission in the mountains north of Asheville.

The old cabin

The original log cabin where it stood for more than a century before being disassembled and reconstructed near Bryson City.

Magnolia Chandler, born in 1916, recalled hearing her grandmother tell of taking her children to the "Big Mission House" to see Dr. Lefevere, a doctor the Presbyterians would bring in. There were no local physicians. One of her sons had a very high fever, coughing continuously, about to die. They walked seven miles from Rice Cove. The doctor placed a metal band on the boy's head to keep his skull from splitting.

Magnolia remembers staying at the cabin when it was a boarding place run by two Presbyterians named Ollie Hendricks and Eva Fredricks. They also ran a school near the cabin.

"Miss Hendricks had a fine piano in the living room where all the girls would gather up and sing songs. Miss Hendricks was all the time giving coats and shoes and stuff to the children." Magnolia said the Presbyterians did a lot to help the people but they were 'uppity' and the cabin was 'grand' back as long as she could remember, the nicest around. She also stated that "Miss Hendricks was the best out of them. She wasn't 'uppity'."

Ester Mae Gosnell also stayed with the Presbyterians at the log cabin. Ester was born in 1922 and was six years younger than Magnolia. She tells of Miss Hendricks being a short, granny type woman, wearing a shawl all the time and kept her hair in a bun on the back of her head. "She was hard on you. She would make you learn Bible verses and repeat them 'til you got them right. But was always wanting to give you something to take home like jelly or stuff she had baked. She would give out books or coats."

"There was people from Asheville who come alot and stayed. One lady she thought real fine and dandy was Beth Merchants. She always had to have tea. Miss Hendricks was old. Still trying to teach. While on her way to Rice Cove to teach Sunday School, she fell. Nearly broke her all to pieces. Some boys found her laying and took her to the Griffins. They ended up taking her to Greenville to the hospital. She came back to the mission house but couldn't stay by herself. Old Sophie Rice talked her into staying with her to get what they could off her."

A lot of history and a tremendous amount of love and labor has gone into the reconstruction of this American Chestnut log cabin. It is situated in a beautiful place designed by our Heavenly Father. Therefore, please respect and take care of this cabin during your stay.