Asheville Homes and LAND!- The Keep In Touch Blog


One Old-timer's Tale: Native American Traditions and the New Sustainability

He was standing at the door when I arrived. His smile was disarming. His eyes twinkled when he spoke. hickory nut forest waterfalls trailsHe was in town to teach an RLI Class. I'd heard about him and had chatted before, but I really hadn't had a chance to "sit down" for a talk with this Old-timer. A REALTOR® from " way back"  when "Sustainable or Eco- Community (in which our Firm specializes) didn't have a name yet, he came to Asheville to teach REALTORS® about The Land.

We covered a few questions, then I asked him what he thought about the Native American traditions and how they dove-tail with today's notions of the "Sustainable Community" to which he replied with a chuckle. 

"On my mother's side, my great-grandparents were Cherokee.Lived right near here. Native Traditions are part of my heritage," he told me.

 "Do those Traditions have an impact on his real estate practice today?"

"janeAnne, remember that it wasn't all that long ago that the voices of the  tribal council were heard in gathering places, just a few miles from here... in Hickory Nut Gorge! Back then the Native Tradition was to protect the hills, streams, wildlife, the mountains and the people who share those eco-developer clients are doing at the conservation neighborhood, Hickory Nut Forest. "

(see photo , to your right, that JT took at what could have been a tribal council meeting spot along the path of the waterfalls at Hickory Nut Creek.)

"People gathered and listened, learned, and stayed informed, " he continued, " and back then, they demanded accountability from those to whom they gave decision-making authority."

"Yes. Accountability has been on my mind a good-deal these days," I replied. "Good to take the time to do some research and educate yourself, I think.

How about YOU?" 

IF you are relocating to Asheville or already live here and would like to know more about how native traditions can come to bear in contemporary life, here are some Community Resources that may interest you: 

Save Treasured Rivers

From the French Broad River to the rushing rapids and meandering streams that touch Georgia's rivers and serve as sources for clean drinking water and pleasant sites for fishing, camping and hiking a call comes for help. You can help them thrive.


  RiverLink's Muddy Water Watch trains citizens to recognize erosion control violations and how to report those violations. First trainings begin in November. Contact: 

  The Green Building Council

The WNC Green Building Council is proud to announce that the nation's first locally based carbon offset program, Appalachian Offsets,  Whether you are a business, individual or part of a group such as a church, homeowner's association or employees of a business, you can do your part to combat global climate change TODAY!

Green Walk-about

One of the best times imaginable can be arranged for "free." Learn about Warren Wilson College's sustainable campus practices. On my walk-about, I visited the EcoDorm, the LEED-designed Orr Cottage, and edible gardens. I got better acquainted with the farm and why it received the county's "River-Friendly Farm Award."  Master Gardener's, State's Park Scholars, REALTORS® working toward their ECO designation, and community leaders all recommend this adventure.

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