Near Woolwine in Patrick County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)
Rock Castle Gorge
Six-sided crystals of colorless quartz occur here. The crystal shapes reminded settlers of castle towers, hence the name "Rock Castle."
The first settlers came before the American Revolution to farm the steep hills. The rocky soil yielded oats, corn, buckwheat, sorghum and apples. Chestnuts provided a cash crop for the farmers, as well as food for foraging hogs.
Frame houses replaced log cabins when sawmills began operating in the late 1880s.
At one time the gorge community boasted 30 families. By 1935, when the federal government began buying the land, only 12 families remained.
Although an occasional homestead remnant can still be seen, Rock Castle Gorge is slowly returning to its primeval state.
Erected by National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior.
Topics and series. This historical marker Agriculture • Roads & Vehicles • Settlements & Settlers. In addition, it is included in the Blue Ridge Parkway series list.
Location. 36° 48.729′ N, 80° 20.757′ W. Marker is near Woolwine, Virginia, in Patrick County. Marker is on Blue Ridge Parkway (at milepost 168.8), 3½ miles south of Parkway Lane South (Virginia Route 8), on the left when traveling south. Marker is located at Rock Castle Gorge Overlook on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Woolwine VA 24185, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. America's Rural Landscape (approx. 0.2 miles away); Buffalo Mountain (approx. 0.8 miles away); You Buy 'Em, We'll Fly 'Em! (approx. 5.3 miles away); Sorghum Making (approx. 5.3 miles away); Homemade Soap Recipe (approx. 5.4 miles away); Whiskey Still (approx. 5.4 miles away); Blacksmith Shop (approx. 5.4 miles away); Bark Mill (approx. 5.4 miles away).
Credits. This page was last revised on May 30, 2019. It was originally submitted on May 30, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 209 times since then and 36 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on May 30, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.