Pingree and Charity Plott built their home on a knoll on a portion of his father’s land which, at the time, comprised approximately 900 acres. At the time of Pingree’s death, land holdings contained 1,311 acres that included the large white two-story Victorian detailed L-shaped wooden frame structure built by the Reverend Jesse Stalcup in 1876. The nine rooms allowed sufficient space for the couple’s five sons and one daughter. Several members of the household contracted tuberculosis, evident by the blue window panes said to be soothing for patients suffering from consumption. Plott operated a mill and farmed the land. For more information about the Plott House and family see Legends, Tales & History of Cold Mountain, Book 1. See also Walking in the Footsteps of Those Who Came Before Us DVD.
Riverhouse Acres currently comprises a house, a campground, and an organic garden alongside the Pigeon River at the location where the East and West Forks of the river merge. A part of the original William Cathey land grant, the site was, according to oral history, probably utilized by the Native Americans who inhabited the area. The location became a popular site for religious camp meetings during the 1800s. Bethel, meaning “House of God,” changed its name from the original Native American moniker, Sonoma, as well as its Forks of Pigeon reference, to its current name as a result of the religious fervor that encouraged local citizens to prefer the Biblical reference for the community’s name. For more information about Riverhouse Acres see Legends, Tales & History of Cold Mountain, Book 1, and Cold Mountain Heritage Driving Tour CD.
Pigeon Gap Watering Hole
Under the auspices of Bethel Rural Community Organization, Joey Rolland, Eagle Scout, restored a historic watering site atop Waynesville Mountain between Bethel and Waynesville that was once used as a rest stop for weary travelers and their animals, dating as far back as the early 1800s. Rolland cleared the site of over growth, uncovered the 1924 plaque placed by the Community Club of Waynesville, and erected a bridge at the Pigeon Gap Watering Hole. Bethel Rural Community Organization placed strategic directional signage and erected its fourth local historic marker at the site in 2016.
Osborne Boundary Oak
Oral history dates the tree to the Native American settlement era when a buffalo and Indian trail as well as a trading post flanked the tree’s border. The tree’s first defined date is 1792 when it was massive enough to be used as a boundary marker for the Adlia Osborne land grant. The tree is considered to be a "witness tree" by the Daughters of the American Revolution because the tree witnessed General Griffith Rutherford and his troops as they passed by the tree during the Rutherford Trace march against the Cherokee in 1776. The legendary black oak has witnessed hundreds of years of history in Bethel Community and has been saved from destruction in the 1970s when community citizens and organizations united to save the tree from widening of Highway #110 and again in 2010 when citizens and organizations assessed the tree’s health and doctored the aging tree with appropriate arborist treatments in 2013 and 2016 under the direction of BRCO. BRCO placed its first local historic marker at the tree. For more information about the Osborne Boundary Oak’s history see Legends, Tales & History of Cold Mountain, Book 6. See also Cold Mountain Heritage Driving Tour CD.