If you had positioned an ear against the Carter County cabin door around 1818, you might have heard: " Boys, I guarantee you that there's a better place to raise a family just a little southwest of here in a beautiful valley called Cades Cove. Once the settlement is established, life will be easy for you. What a dream you can live!" Admittedly speculative, these could very well have been the encouragements from William "Fighting Billy" Tipton to John Oliver and Joshua Jobe which enticed them to remove from Carter County to the wilderness in Blount County.
The principals involved possessed individually distinguishing attributes, motivations and circumstances which made the proposal attractive. William Tipton inherently was a born fighter, acquiring this trait from his father, John Tipton, heroic in the Revolutionary War and a battler with John Sevier over State politics. Fighting Billy saw speculative land opportunities in the Smoky Mountains and methodically acquired vast property in the Cades Cove area with title to over 1200 acres by 1821. Undoubtedly, the maneuvering for possession initiated several years prior to this time when the land still legally belonged to the Native Americans. Once title was secured, Fighting Billy was obviously motivated to promote settlement as this would increase the value of his investments and enable him to exploit the area's natural resources. If Fighting Billy could provide an opportunity for associates, friends and family in Carter County simultaneously, so much the better. John Oliver and Joshua Jobe were excellent candidates to establish the initial foothold in Cades Cove. John is reported to have been associated with the Tipton ironworks in Carter County as a collier, one who was skilled in the conversion of coal into fuel for the iron furnace.
John came from a respected, but not a wealthy family, and had recently married Lurany Frazier, a bound girl. Both probably wished for a secure life with opportunities so far not afforded them. John's military record and Lurany's maturity were indications that they possessed the courage and inner strength to provide a realistic probability of survival. Joshua Jobe chose Ruth Tipton, niece of Fighting Billy, as his wife, or vice-versa. Joshua was a Deputy Sheriff in Carter County and though slight of stature, backed down to no one. The social relationships between the principals, in terms of timing, nature and frequency is unestablished. It is documented that Joshua directly convinced John and Lurany to make a home in the Cove, perhaps relocating with them, or perhaps assisting their relocation, joining them later. Joshua bought 426 acres from Fighting Billy in late 1821. John was his "next door neighbor" living just to the north on adjoining property. They provided each other with the moral and physical support required to tame the wilderness and "point the way" for many others to follow. Among those who followed were sons of Fighting Billy who initiated a Tipton presence in the Cove community. Fighting Billy later contributed to the Cove survival with forging and milling operations. Joshua Jobe physically left John Oliver after ten years, going to "greener pastures" in Georgia. William Tipton, Joshua Jobe and John Oliver were truly the foundation stones of Cades Cove, encouraging and establishing a thriving community which initially was their dream but eventually became shared with other settlers. Among the three, John uniquely maintained the dream as a lifelong Cove resident. Although removed, Joshua and Fighting Billy lived to see the dream become a reality!
Today, countless Cove descendants and visitors can only attempt to visualize the former community where Joshua Jobe, John Oliver and William Tipton showed the way for many others to establish home places and build families based on faith, love and their shared dream. What a dream it was!
January 19, 2002
Thank You Dave Post For Allowing Me To Share This!
How Can You Help Preserve What Is Still Standing?
By Joining The CCPA, Volunteer or A Donation No Matter How Small Will Help. All Monies Go To Preserving What Is Left Of The Memories, History, Structures, Cemeteries, and Churches Of Those Great People That Once Lived In The Cove.
If You Are a Genealogist Or A Historian.......
You Will Benefit By Joining The CCPA
Since this is my own personal Cades Cove site, I am allowed to push this great organization and I know that the CCPA is preserving all they can (That the National Park Does NOT Do) to share with all others who have the same love for the once community of Cades Cove, community, the families, and the history! Hugs Gloria
"Preserving the diverse mix of scenic, cultural, natural and recreational values presents many management challenges. A study is underway to assist the Park in developing a long-range management vision for Cades Cove that will enhance the quality of the visitor experience through protecting natural resources, preserving cultural heritage and managing traffic congestion."
Folks, The CCPA is all about Preserving ! Please support them as a member!
Last private inhabited residence in Cades Cove dismantled
by Linda Braden Albert
of The Daily Times Staff
The Kermit Caughron house in Cades Cove was dismantled early Monday morning.
Great Smoky Mountains National Park Service personnel collapsed the house, the last private inhabited residence in Cades Cove, about 8 a.m., said Dale Brukiewa, heavy equipment foreman for the Cades Cove District.
``We took (the house) down as gently as we could,'' Brukiewa said. ``There was actually a series of cables that pulled the two end walls out and the front wall down, and we just pushed it sideways and let it drop. It looks much worse than it actually did when it came down, but the roof is pretty much still intact laying on top of everything. ... We got everything down to where it was stable enough that we could start on the outside and let them get whatever they want to salvage.''
Brukiewa said that he was able to save a remnant of the Caughron family's past from the attic and set it aside for them.
``I haven't seen one of these in 30 years,'' he said. ``A silver Christmas tree, with all the little holders, the box, the pole, and everything still in there.''
Ruth Caughron Davis, daughter of Lois and the late Kermit Caughron, waited with family members and several other members of the Cades Cove Preservation Association until park service personnel could escort the group to the site. CCPA has been given permission to salvage materials from the home, built by Caughron in 1952 from materials obtained from the old Cable School. Some of these were also part of an earlier school, Laurel Springs, which was located on Parsons Branch Road.
GSMNP and CCPA partner
The group of CCPA members and park service personnel were somber as they viewed the pile of rubble that had been the Caughron house. On the collapsed roof, the attic vent continued to whirl in the light breeze.
``I always hate to see a building go down in the park,'' said Bob Miller, Park spokesperson. ``We think real hard about what we're going to save.''
Miller explained that the Caughron house and outlying buildings are not within the historic time frame, from 1860 to 1910, that the Park Service wishes to preserve in Cades Cove. Only the barn, originally owned by Becky Cable on Mill Creek, will be preserved as part of the adjoining Dan Lawson home site.
Brukiewa said that CCPA requested it be allowed to remove the materials from the house if demolition was inevitable.
``We do a lot of work with CCPA restoring the cemeteries, and they do a great job with that,'' Brukiewa said. ``They had an interest in the house, and we thought if there was going to be anything to salvage we didn't want to lose it.'' In keeping with this, the glass windows were removed for safe-keeping several months ago and will be given to CCPA.
``We're working with CCPA to salvage as much as possible,'' Brukiewa said. ``That was one of the reasons we decided to bring it down as we did.''
The Caughron property ``will be maintained as lawn, much as it is now,'' Miller said, and not be allowed to grow back up into woodland.
Only memories are left
The Caughron family and Cades Cove Preservation Association maintain that the Caughron house should have been kept as an exhibit of Cades Cove's cultural heritage.
John Davis III, son of John and Ruth Caughron Davis and a grandson of Kermit Caughron, said he could not express his thoughts on the decision to dismantle the house.
``My Mama told me not to talk that way,'' he said. ``It ain't right. They've got the first house that was lived in here in the Cove, there's no reason why they couldn't keep the last one.
``I can't take my kids and show them how my grandparents lived, there are no more places like this around that I know of,'' he said. One of his children, John Davis IV, was also on hand to witness the end of a Cades Cove era.
Ruth Davis and her family, along with CCPA members Ron Chambers, David Ledbetter and Sara Gregory, worked diligently to save the remnants of the two old schools left in the home. CCPA will store the materials at Chambers' home until they find a location where they can reassemble the Cable School.
Davis said that many thoughts have gone through her mind since she discovered that the house would come down, both of her father and her heritage and of the common heritage she shares with so many other descendants of Cades Cove residents.
``Sara's pulling nails out of that weatherboarding that my daddy straightened from the old Cable School,'' Ruth Davis said as she fought back tears. ``I remember many a time when he'd lay them on a concrete block and hit them and straighten them out. He didn't waste anything.
``I was thinking about those old schools, and how important it will be to rebuild the old school if they couldn't leave the house here,'' she said. ``This is a little piece of (our heritage) -- one more little piece is going to be gone.''
I Believe That Is Why We Must Support The CCPA To Make It Stronger!!!!! Gloria Motter
"I wonder how the people who made this decision would like to have a cable run through their grandpa's house and it pulled down.
"Quote from " Ruth Davis"
Last Cades Cove family home demolished
Offspring salvage part of its remains
By Ken Garland, News-Sentinel Blount County bureau
CADES COVE - Ruth Davis stood quietly Monday and looked at the pile of rubble that was once the home where she, her sister and two brothers grew up.
It was the home where her parents, Kermit and Lois Caughron, spent most of their married life.
And it was the home that has stood vacant for almost three years since her father died. The National Park Service had ordered the house torn down.
The house, which was built in the early 1950s, didn't have historical value, according to the park service.
The Caughrons were the last family to live in Cades Cove. Lois Caughron moved out after her husband died in 1999. The Caughrons farmed and had cattle in the cove.
The park service gave lumber that could be salvaged from the house to the Cades Cove Preservation Association, a group interested in helping maintain Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The lumber was pulled from a pile and loaded onto trailers, which will be taken to the home of Ronnie Chambers in Walland.
Association officials have said they would like to construct either the house or a replica of the Cable Schoolhouse, from which lumber to build the house was taken.
Davis said she almost did not go to Cades Cove to help salvage the lumber.
"I wanted to, and then I didn't want to," she said. "I came up here last week and took some pictures of the house."
Now, she is left with memories.
"I remember my dad sitting in front of the fireplace," she said, her voice catching. "And when we would come to see him, he would walk out with us and sit on the front porch. He'd be there when we left."
Park Service maintenance workers pulled down the house in the morning, long before volunteers were allowed in at noon. The loop road was closed while maintenance workers replaced a low-water bridge near the Tipton-Oliver House.
"We tried to keep as much of it intact as we could," said Dale Brukiewa, the roads foreman for Cades Cove.
"The roof is pretty much intact, but the exterior walls took a beating."
He said workers ran a cable through windows at the front and back of the house and pulled out the ends. They then ran the cable through the front and back and pulled those walls out, collapsing the remainder of the house.
Brukiewa said some walls showed signs of deterioration. He said the sill plate that ran along the bottom of each wall showed signs of rot and insect damage.
Brukiewa said maintenance workers had already removed the windows from the house.
"People had already started to break them," he said. "They (windows) were wavy glass and some had bubbles in them.
"I think a lot of the ceiling is pretty good. The roof itself, it's pretty modern. There were no historic nails in the house that we could find."
Davis' husband, John Davis, her son, John Paul Davis III, and grandson, John Paul Davis IV, helped with the salvage.
"This is my grandpa's home, and my momma's home," John Paul Davis III said. "And I got married right over there," he said, pointing to a rise behind the house.
"I wonder how the people who made this decision would like to have a cable run through their grandpa's house and it pulled down.
"My oldest son is old enough to remember coming here. He stayed at night. The others (children) will have to hear stories. My brother's kids will have to hear stories."
A short while later, the youngster found a fabric belt and took it to his grandmother. They talked awhile, and the boy went back to the rubble. He returned a few minutes later with most of a skirt.
"It's my skirt," Ruth Davis said, a smile on her face.
Although Caughron died almost three years ago, he was not forgotten by visitors. Bunches of artificial flowers have been left at the gate across the driveway to the home.
And Monday, an artificial daffodil was taped to a piece of gate hardware, a memory to Kermit Caughron who for many people was Cades Cove.
February 26, 2002 Copyright 2002, KnoxNews. All Rights Reserved.
The National Park Service had ordered the house torn down.
The CCPA has experienced two significant diappointments this week. The first was the dismantlement and removal of the Kermit Caughron home place in the Cove.
Early this morning, I was contacted by Joe Baker, son of Gary Baker, who informed me that the vintage 1800 Grainger County Mill, being restored by Gary Baker in Townsend, burned last evening or early this morning. Arson is suspected. As you are aware, the CCPA was enthusiastically planning to occupy a portion of this mill as our "home" in Townsend and as an exhibit of our Cove heritage.
We will be evaluating alternatives for the immediate future with Gary and otherwise. Joe Baker indicated that the fire damage may not have been so extensive as to prevent a restart and rebuilding effort.
The CCPA has alerted our media contacts to this event along with our partnership agreement with Gary Baker.
Our CCPA family has been tested this week. I know our "family ties" are stronger than these very emotional events this week and we will emerge more united and with strengthened purpose and resolve. 3-1-02
The Cades Cove Preservation Association shares the disappoinment and frustration resulting from the fire damage absorbed by the reconstructed Massengill Mill on the banks of the Little River in Townsend on March 1, 2002. The CCPA is dedicated to the preservation of the heritage of the former Cades Cove community and is sympathetic and appreciative of the efforts of others who embrace preservation objectives. The potential financial loss of those investing in the mill reconstruction is insignificant when compared to destruction of the 18th Century structure which is absolutely irreplaceable! Many, many visitors enjoy the experience afforded by operation of the Cable Mill in Cades Cove as an exhibit of that heritage. The Massengill Mill preceded the construction and operation of the Cable Mill by 100 years!
The damage absorbed at the mill also is disappointing to the CCPA in that the Association established a partnership relationship with the Massengill Mill owner/operator, Gary Baker, in the Spring of 2001 to exhibit and communicate our Cades Cove heritage in a portion of the facility. The CCPA evaluated the mill as a very representative site both esthetically and logistically for establishing a Townsend "home" for partial achievement of our objectives. Under the leadership of CCPA President Mary Gregory, planning was accelerating and enthusiasm building for fabrication of the CCPA exhibits. Tracie Walker has been coordinating conceptual definition of the inital CCPA exhibit theme, The Schools of the Cove. The CCPA is most appreciative of this partnership and will be working with them as we evaluate the path forward. The damage of the Massengill Mill is the second major disappointment to the CCPA during the past week with the first being the dismantlement and removal of the Caughron properties from the Cove. The CCPA heritage preservation committment will continue unabated as a result of these events which are difficult for the CCPA, our partners, our members and a significant portion of our community.
The CCPA applauds the talent, effort and enthusiasm of Clive Valentine and other craftsmen who have provided so much for relocation and reconstruction of the Massengill Mill. The product was art not just a building. The events of this week are undoubtedly emotionally devastating for these talented people and their families. We also applaud the enthusiasm of our partners who have indicated a desire to recover and rebuild. The CCPA looks forward to seeing the "Massengill Mill rise from the ashes".
Dave Post~ CCPA Public Relations Officer March 2, 2002
Our hearts goes out to the Caughron Family and will for many years. Gloria
The CCPA enjoys excellent support and coverage from our media friends, in particular The Daily Times and the Knoxville News Sentinel. Iearlier provided a link for Linda Albert's coverage of the dismantlement of the Kermit Caughron Home Place. Below is the link to coverage authored by Ken Garland for the News Sentinel.
When you get the chance, please tell our media friends how much you appreciate their support and give 'em a big ole CCPA hug!
Only a true Southerner knows the difference between a hissie fit and a conniption.
Nobody but a true Southerner knows how many fish make up a mess.
A true Southerner can show or point out to you the general direction of cattywumpus.
A true Southerner knows exactly how long "directly" is - as in "Going to town, be back directly."
Even true Southern babies know that "Gimme some sugar" is not a request for the white, granular sweet substance that sits in a pretty little bowl in the middle of the table.
All true Southerners know exactly when "by and by" is.
True Southerners know instinctively that the best gesture of solace for a neighbor who's got trouble is a plate of hot fried chicken and a big bowl of cold tater salad. (If the trouble is a real crisis, they also know to add some hot biscuits and nanner puddin'.)
True Southerners grow up knowing the difference between "pert' near" and "a right far piece."
No true Southerner would ever assume that the car with the flashing turn signal is actually going to make a turn.
True Southerners know that "fixin" can be used both as a noun, verb and adverb.
When somebody's "fixin" to do something, it won't be long.
Rocking chairs and swings are guaranteed stress relievers.
The difference between Yankee's and damn Yankee's.
Rocking chairs and swings with an old person in them are history lessons.
The Townsend Traveler, issued by the Daily times on April 6, 2002 was outstanding in coverage of CCPA and Cades Cove information. Everyone will want to pick up several copies when you say hello to our friends at the Townsend Vistitors Center or at other locations. Linda Albert provided an extensive article reviewing our accomplishments over the first year and plans for 2002. Linda also provided a great article about the contributions and lives of "women in the Cove", as illustrated by the relatives of Inez McCaulley Adams and Maycle McCaulley Yearout. Thanks Inez for sharing your memories with the readers. Linda was very busy! She also updated the circumstances and events relative to removal of the Caughron properties. There's many other articles of great significance to the CCPA and folks who appreciate Cades Cove.