Bent Creek in Buncombe County, North Carolina — The American South (South Atlantic)
French Broad River
The French Broad River played a major role in this region’s early development. Initially called the “Broad River” by eighteenth-century French hunters and traders, it was later named the French Broad River. With headwaters on Pisgah Ridge twenty miles southeast of here, it flows through the mountains near Asheville and merges with the Holston River at Knoxville.
The French Broad’s wide banks provided a convenient passageway through Western North Carolina’s rugged mountains, so much so that it was once the main thoroughfare between the Carolinas and Tennessee. Often with herds containing thousands, nineteenth-century drovers moved cattle, horses, hogs, ducks and turkeys along this lengthy route to southern markets.
Erected by National Park Service.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Settlements & Settlers • Waterways & Vessels. In addition, it is included in the Blue Ridge Parkway series list.
Location. 35° 29.85′ N, 82° 35.619′ W. Marker Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Asheville NC 28806, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Dr. L.B. McBrayer (approx. ¾ mile away); Landsman Riley Powers (approx. 3.2 miles away); Rutherford Trace (approx. 3½ miles away); Birthplace of American Forestry (approx. 3.7 miles away); Frederick Law Olmsted (approx. 3.7 miles away); William Moore (approx. 4.1 miles away); Home Place of Capt. Wm. Moore (approx. 4.1 miles away); Stoneman's Raid (approx. 5 miles away).
More about this marker. The right side of the marker features a map of the area showing the Blue Ridge Parkway and Drover’s Roads. Next to this is an etching, courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, Pack Memorial Library, Asheville, North Carolina. It has a caption of “Keeping track of the animals demanded the drover’s complete attention. Animals often numbered in the thousands. This 1857 illustration is from Harper’s Weekly.”
Also see . . . History of the Blue Ridge Parkway. (Submitted on August 29, 2012, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. It was originally submitted on August 29, 2012, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 639 times since then and 16 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on August 29, 2012, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.