A Spring Creek Driving Tour

By Maxine Dalton

Burgin Meadows and his wife Mollie Miranda Hipps acquired this home and the store from Lon Ferguson around 1910. They were the parents of 12 children and the two youngest were born here in 1916 and 1919. During the depression this home was a hostel to people from all over the country and Europe who signed the guest register. The Meadows heirs are restoring the home but the store is now gone and the tenure of the barn is precarious.

8.1 miles – A short side trip up Caldwell Mountain Road will bring you to the Ferguson homestead. Thomas Ferguson, one of 12 children, was born in 1846 and came to Spring Creek around 1865 from Rush Farm on Hwy 209 in Haywood County. He married Harriet Duckett and at one time the Ferguson family owned 400 acres in Spring Creek. Four generations of Ferguson’s live in Spring Creek.

On Caldwell Mountain Road you will see a silo with a painting of the old Ferguson home place which still stands.

If you stay on Caldwell Mountain Road to its intersection with Meadow Fork you will come to the Woody homestead.
Here you will find a 106 year-old two story home with a meticulously kept lawn and some plywood bears announcing, “The Woodys”.

This home was built in 1901 by John Day Balding and two ‘Davis boys’ from over on Spring Creek. The house took two years to build. Before building this home, John Day and his wife, Keziah lived in a log cabin to the right of the current house where they raised 13 children. John was rich in land, owning property all the way down to the Meadow Fork Baptist Church and some up the mountain on the other side of the road. He had an apple orchard and raised cattle and sheep and Keziah wove coverlets from the sheep’s wool. John Day Balding was a religious man and performed funerals for folks in Spring Creek when needed.

The Balding family was self sufficient, even making the children’s shoes.

The house had four fire places and the bricks for the fire place were made at the brick yard across the road from where the current house stands. The walls and ceiling are prime grade tongue and groove chestnut and each room has an elaborate molding, one hand cut dental crown, the others, an alternating pattern of dark and light woods. Every room had a closet. The original roof had overlapping wood shingles.

Returning back to Hwy 209

8.9 Miles - The Spring Creek United Methodist Church was moved from Gap of the Mountain on roller logs when Hwy 209 was moved to its present location. The Gap of the Mountain Cemetery remains in its original location and can be reached by turning right on the 1st road off of Baltimore Branch and crossing the creek.
10.0 miles – This area was once called the Baltimore Straight and was owned by the Hunter family. The Hunters still live in Spring Creek. Baltimore Branch Road goes up to Troublesome Gap.

10.2 Miles – The Fowler Farms Sport Clays and Game Preserve is owned by Cline and Mary Ruth Coward Fowler. The farm consists of 621 acres and was built up by John B. Coward and his wife, Fronia Ledford who purchased small farms until they owned 335 acres. The remaining acreage was acquired by Mary Ruth and Cline.

The farm is now on its fourth generation and 3 generations of Fowlers live at the farm.
10.9 miles – Liberty Missionary Baptist Church. This church celebrated its 100th anniversary on September 10, 2006.

11.7 Miles – On your right is the old Goforth Store. This store was owned and operated by Harry and Ann Fleming. Mr. Fleming also ran a grist mill above the store.
The Flemings were the parents of Betty Reeves, a county commissioner in 1994. Betty’s grandfather, Van Brown was a county commissioner in 1892. He lived on West Road and was a surveyor. He educated all of his girls and one of his daughter’s, Betty’s grandmother, was a teacher in Anderson Cove.

12.0 Miles – Looking straight ahead you will see Bluff Mountain. The Appalachian Trail crosses Bluff Mountain (4686 ft.)
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