Published: August 29th 2021
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Asheville - North Carolina

Before the Europeans arrived in what is now North Carolina, the land around Asheville was a part of the Cherokee nation. While many cities underwent major overhauls in past decades, Asheville's historic and architecturally diverse downtown remains beautifully preserved.

Many of the city's architectural achievements took place in the 1920's when Asheville danced to the tune of flocking tourists and new growth. By the time of the Depression the city inherited one of the highest per capita debt.

Asheville was determined to pay back every cent, it couldn't afford to tear down any of its wonderful buildings that we saw today. The city officially erased its debt in 1976.

Two surprises today

It started to rain in just one place close to a crossing, it was only when looking up A&P realised it was a guy high up cleaning the windows of one of the buildings.LOL.

Next surprise was as they came out of the emporium store the son of one of the voyagers on the tour, Julie, had told her son that the guys were in town so he was able to say hi to everyone.Such a small
world that heygo can unite people in this way.

We took part of the Urban Trail, where every station calls to mind a historical moment and the achievements of remarkable individuals connected to this small city.

Walk Into History - Where the first log courthouse of the city stood in 1893.

Crossroads - Traveled once by Native Americans and, later by drovers who herded livestock across the mountains from Tennessee to southern markets, taking turkeys, pigs and cows as far as Charleston. The embedded rails represent the coming of the train and the electric trolley.

Stepping Out - A top hat, cane and gloves, cast in bronze, recall the theaters and the Grand Opera House that once flourished.

Elizabeth Blackwell - A bench with medicinal herbs honours Asheville resident, the first female in the country to receive a medical degree.

Art Deco Masterpiece - 1929 S&W Building, Douglas Ellington’s charming masterwork, influenced by his time in Paris at École des Beaux-Arts.

Flat Iron Architecture - A large iron, a replica of one used by a local laundry was opposite The Flat
Iron Building reminiscent of the skyscraper in Manhattan.

Cat Walk - At one time, footbridges known as "catwalks" jumped the alley from the retaining wall to second floor shop entrances before "Wall Street" was paved. Today we reached Wall Street by taking the elevator inside one of the buildings

Appalachian Stage - Five bronze figures seemingly float to the rhythms of Appalachian music, a tribute to the songs of the mountains.

Shopping Daze - Three well-heeled and hatted ladies with a small dog in tow commemorates an era when Haywood Street was the epicenter of fashionable shopping.

Guastavino’s Monument - The basilica of St. Nicholas has largest self-supporting elliptical dome, based on the intricate tile work of Spanish-born architect and engineer Raphael Guastavino. Constructed of tiles and mortar, the dome measures 58 feet by 82 feet.

Aaron & Patrick had been given permission to go inside, it was so beautiful.

Another winner on the Road Trip programme.

Additional photos below
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