The Transylvania Times -

Cedar Mountain News


February 28, 2019

Pictured is Sam Lance's home, which was also known as the Maxwell House.

Small Area Planning Committee

The Transylvania County Board of Commissioners is seeking applications from interested persons to serve on a Small Area Planning Committee. Applicants must be residents and/or business owners in the Cedar Mountain community. This committee will advise the small area planning process for the Cedar Mountain community and make recommendations to the Planning Board and Board of Commissioners on regulations, the development process, and other county activities that influence growth and development under that plan. The Board of Commissioners requires an application in order to be considered for appointment. Applications are available at or at Transylvania County Administration, 101 S. Broad St. in Brevard. Applications should be returned to the above address, attention: Trisha Hogan, clerk to the board, no later than Friday, March 15.

Looking Back

By Patty Stahl

In February 1904, the small community of Loftis had its own post office and tollgate located along the Johnstone Turnpike. This area is now included in the Cedar Mountain community. The following excerpt from the Loftis Locals column offers a glimpse of the activities of a few of the residents living in the Loftis and Cedar Mountain communities. The post office was in the home of Andrew Loftis, across the turnpike from today's Sherwood Forest entrance and at the entrance to High Rocks Camp. The home of J. C. "Craf" McGaha was also located on the Johnstone Turnpike on today's Piedmont Camp Road. This home was a popular and welcoming spot for drovers, travelers and clergymen. Craf McGaha would live for another four years after this column was written until his death at 72 years old in a February snowstorm. A. L. Hardin was the son-in-law of McGaha. Sam Lance, also mentioned in the excerpt, was another leader in the Loftis community and the county treasurer. He would live in his home until his death in 1920 at the age of 80. His home is one of the oldest in Cedar Mountain and is located near the entrance to Sequoyah Woods. It has been renovated over the years. It was also frequented by visitors traveling the turnpike. These three community leaders were active members of Little River Chapel, today known as McGaha Chapel.

Craf McGaha's visitor, Frank Miles Hagood, was the grandson of Col. Benjamin Hagood. Ben Hagood purchased Caesar's Head and the surrounding acreage in the mid 1800s, where he built a home and hotel. By 1904, the hotel and property had been donated by the Hagood family to Furman University and was managed by H. M. Geer at the time of the column. The hotel was a major destination for traveling parties for almost 100 years until destroyed by fire in 1954. Miss Leona Gidney was the Loftis postmaster for five months in 1905. The Loftis post office was discontinued in 1907. Mr. E.E. Lewis was described in the Sylvan Valley News as "one of Cedar Mountain's hustling merchants." The store of W. P. Whitmire and E. E. Lewis is mentioned in a 1903 Cedar Mountain News column. Jane Shipman Heath, the mother of Jackson S. Heath and the wife of Isaac Heath, died at the age of 88 in April 1904. She was living with her son and his family in Cedar Mountain at his home on today's Haskell Jones Road. The home is no longer there. Many of her descendants still live in the Cedar Mountain area. Clarence Lance recovered from his illness and was listed as still living at the time of his mother's death in 1913. Feed Rock is a large rock outcropping located in Sherwood Forest at an elevation above 3,000 feet. The grassy area was used by drovers as a feeding station for livestock on route to South Carolina. Rev. Kuykendall officiated at least one other wedding there, in July of 1903. Perhaps the "batchelor" should avoid Feed Rock.

Uncle Zeke's reply to Totsy will be shared later. It was a lengthy reply.

The following is an excerpt from Loftis Locals Sylvan Valley News on Feb. 26, 1904: A.L. Hardin is in town this week on business. Miss Leona Gidney is contemplating visiting relatives and friends near Hendersonville the last of next week.

Mr. and Mrs. E.E. Lewis were in town a few days ago. Mrs. Lewis had some dental work done while there.

We are pleased to say the aged mother of J.S. Heath, who has been very low for several days, is slowly convalescing.

Providence permitting, Rev. Mr. Matney will preach at Little River Chapel next Sunday at 11 o'clock a.m. and Saturday night before.

We saw a "batchelor" making his way through Loftis one day last week holding a high head and smiling from ear to ear. Look out, girls; I imagine these smiles were not all in vain.

Mr. and Mrs. Sam Lance were summoned to the bedside of their son Clarence a few days ago, who is seriously ill with pneumonia fever, but hopes are entertained for his recovery.

The wedding bells seem to ring the year round. Robert West and Miss Laura Ingram were quietly married at the South Carolina line near Feed Rock Monday, February 15, Rev. W. L. Kuykendall officiating.

Cheer up, farmers, and go to whistling till you can be heard across the fields and quit wearing such frowns on your faces. Winter is not going to be here always. These beautiful days seem very encouraging.

Frank M. Hagood, one of the most prominent and leading young men of Riverview, S. C. was a welcome guest at the home of J. C. McGaha Saturday night and Sunday. We are always delighted to see him in our burg.

Come again, Uncle Zeke. Your letter was certainly interesting, and your advice was splendid. Just be patient and bear with me a minute. I want to ask you a question. You tell us that dancing is your besetting sin and where do you think the sin comes from, the music or the heel? Most of them say it's all in the music, but I won't agree with them. So please give us your opinion on this next week.


Library Bookmobile

The bookmobile comes to the Cedar Mountain Community Center every second Thursday of the month from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. The next stop is Thursday, March 14.

Blood Drive

The Cedar Mountain Fire Rescue Department and the Red Cross were pleased with the turnout for the Blood Drive on Saturday. Thirty folks came to give the gift of life. Thanks to everyone who came to donate.

Around The House

By Linda Young

The main building of the Caesar's Head Hotel.

I have had a little microphone (baby monitor) outside my door for a couple years now. My house is so sound proof I don't hear much of what is going on outside. With the monitor, I hear people walking up to the door before they can ring the doorbell. It was calm outside when I heard a rumbling noise that sounded like it was on the porch. I flipped the outside lights on to scare any animal off. It was then I noticed flashing blue lights at the place across the street. I called 911 in case it might be a burglary. The 911 dispatcher kept asking me what I saw over there and if there was any smoke or fire. I said I only saw the blue flashing lights, and I wasn't going over there (Might have been aliens). She laughed. Cedar Mountain Fire Rescue came but found nothing amiss except the blue lights. It was an alarm system that apparently the lightning or thunder had set off. I called the owners in Atlanta. She said she thought they would just scrap the alarm system idea since they had such good neighbors keeping an eye on things. She called another neighbor who had a key to the place and the blue lights stopped flashing. And that's the excitement for this week.

More contributors are needed. We'd love to hear what's going on, if you would like to share. Email your news and photos to by Monday night or early Tuesday morning next week.


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