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MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Bedford in Bedford County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
 

A Community at "the Mons"

Blue Ridge Parkway

 
 
A Community at "the Mons" Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2019
1. A Community at "the Mons" Marker
Inscription.  By the mid-1800s, the village of Mons, which is Latin for mountain, had grown up around the Peaks of Otter. There was a church, a school, two mills, and a hotel. The small community provided services to tourists who had discovered the Peaks of Otter as a prime destination resort. This pattern of vacationing in the southern mountains continued into the automobile era and helped fuel the dreams of the Blue Ridge Parkway. A short hike around Abbott Lake takes you to Polly Woods Ordinary, a lodge providing the "ordinary" needs of travelers to the Peaks as early as the 1830s.
 
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Blue Ridge Parkway marker series.
 
Location. 37° 26.734′ N, 79° 36.589′ W. Marker is near Bedford, Virginia, in Bedford County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Blue Ridge Parkway (at milepost 85.6) and Peaks Road (Virginia Route 43). Marker is located beside the parking lot, along the walkway in front of the
Marker detail: Sharp Top summit in the early 1900s image. Click for full size.
2. Marker detail: Sharp Top summit in the early 1900s
Families and friends in the early 1900s enjoyed scenic hikes, drives, and picnics in this relaxed mountain setting. Today, Sharp Top remains a popular destination.
Peaks of Otter Visitor Center. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 85919 Blue Ridge Parkway, Bedford VA 24523, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 7 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Peaks of Otter (within shouting distance of this marker); Abbott Lake (approx. 0.3 miles away); Polly Woods' Ordinary (approx. 0.4 miles away); a different marker also named Peaks of Otter (approx. 4.9 miles away); 1889 Thaxton Train Wreck (approx. 6.6 miles away); The Anchorage (approx. 6.8 miles away); Buchanan (approx. 6.8 miles away); The Botetourt Artillery (approx. 6.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bedford.
 
More about this marker. This marker is one side of a three-sided kiosk at this location. The other two sides present park travel tips and the geography, flora and fauna of the area.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Peaks of Otter
 
Also see . . .  Peaks of Otter (Wikipedia). In 1834 the first local inn was created by Polly Wood, a widower who opened an "Ordinary" in her log cabin where settlers could stay the night and get a warm meal. By the 1870s, Benjamin Wilkes had opened the famous Mons Hotel. By the early 1900s the Peaks of Otter became a popular local tourist spot and became especially noticed by the National Park Service. Abbott Lake, the lake at the base of the peaks, was man made and created in 1964 along with the official Peaks of Otter Lodge, which still stands today. (Submitted on May 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Marker detail: Automobile Tourism image. Click for full size.
3. Marker detail: Automobile Tourism
For years, tourists have been drawn to Mons for the cool weather, beautiful scenery, and mountain summits.
 
 
Categories. Parks & Recreational AreasSettlements & Settlers
 
Marker detail: Hotel Mons image. Click for full size.
4. Marker detail: Hotel Mons
The Hotel Mons was the heart of a thriving tourist community that grew up around the Peaks of Otter. With the rise of the automobile, more and more people visited this area.
A Community at "the Mons" Marker<br>(<i>wide view  Peaks of Otter Visitor Center in background</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2019
5. A Community at "the Mons" Marker
(wide view Peaks of Otter Visitor Center in background)
Three Peaks, Endless Views<br>(<i>panel on north side of marker kiosk</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2019
6. Three Peaks, Endless Views
(panel on north side of marker kiosk)
Revived forests and abundant wildflowers, bird song and fox chatter, cascading water and endless views—this is the Peaks of Otter. You can hike to Sharp Top, Flat Top, and Harkening Hill or sit by Abbott Lake. You can see traces of a mountain community at the Johnson Farm or just breathe in fresh mountain air while you picnic.
Blue Ridge Parkway and Sharp Top Mountain (<i>view south from near marker</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, May 16, 2019
7. Blue Ridge Parkway and Sharp Top Mountain (view south from near marker)
 

More. Search the internet for A Community at "the Mons".
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 28, 2019. This page originally submitted on May 27, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 62 times since then. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on May 28, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.
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