Founded in 1810 by Colonel Robert Love, a Revolutionary War soldier, Waynesville is named for General "Mad" Anthony Wayne, who was Love’s commander. He must have made quite an impression on Col. Love with his daring military exploits and fiery demeanor. The town of Waynesville is just the opposite. Quiet and unassuming, it is home to many artists, who draw inspiration from the high peaks of the mountains that ripple off in the distance.
Since the middle 1880s, travelers have made their way to this broad valley surrounded on all sides by mountains approaching 6,000 feet. You might recognize one of those – Cold Mountain – made famous by the Civil War-era novel by Charles Frazier. Ironically enough, the last shots of the Civil War east of the Mississippi were fired right here.
As the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was dedicated in 1940, Waynesville touted itself as the Gateway to the Smokies. By then, the building that is now the Mast Store, then known as The Toggery, was serving residents and visitors to town with quality clothing at reasonable prices. We hope you’ll find the same service and an even wider selection of goods today.
Planting by the Moon and by the Signs
Whether or not you believe that your destiny is governed by the stars, you probably know which astrological sign you were born under, right? Astrology is just an amusement to most of us these days, but to our ancestors, natural astrology was important in predicting seasonal events and weather. Well-informed planters used the position of the sun, moon and the constellations to manage their livestock and crops.Read More
Not Goodbye, but So Long to Waynesville's General Manager
In a time when careers are measured in single-digit years, it’s truly something to celebrate when a manager of a retail store started on Day One and is leaving 27 years later. Days spent folding hundreds of sweaters are transcending to days gazing at high peaks in Montana and other places across the globe. No matter where Melanee ends up, it’s going to be just another day in paradise.Read More
5 Ways to Escape the Winter Blues
By now you’ve heard the news – the official weather prognosticating groundhog, Punxsutawney Phil, emerged from his burrow and saw his shadow, thus, we’ll have six more weeks of winter. That could be the most depressing news you’ve heard in a while, especially if you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, also known as SAD. Longer nights, cold temperatures, and gray days all figure into a general feeling of sadness and depression. But, there are steps you can take to reduce its effects. Here are five ways to escape the winter blues.Read More
As downtowns begin their revitalization journey, one of the first routes they must travel is finding an anchor, usually a retail store, for their Main Street. Waynesville was the first town to come knocking on our door. The building they showed us used to be The Toggery, and it was perfect.
*Photo courtesy of the Haywood County Public Library History Collection.