Back to the Future: Two men, two buildings, two feuding local governments-attachment0

Back to the Future: Two men, two buildings, two feuding local government­s

This year, both Asheville City Hall and the Buncombe County Courthouse turn 85. The two classic buildings are both undergoing renovation or expansion, part of an effort to keep them a center of civic life for the next 85 years. A look at their history, their future, and the end of the old feud that created them. Photos by Max Cooper.

Disaster 2012 Web Extra: Remembering the 2004 floods-attachment0

Disaster 2012 Web Extra: Rememberin­g the 2004 floods

With speculation rampant across the world over the possibility of a mysterious cataclysmic event occurring tomorrow, Dec. 21 in conjunction with the supposed end of the Mayan calendar, Xpress took a look at more realistic local threats this week in the story “Tomorrow Never Knows: WNC Disasters Past, Present and Future.” As part of our research for that story, we compiled several photos from one of the biggest natural disasters to strike our region in modern history – the floods of 2004.

Tomorrow never knows: WNC disasters past, present and future-attachment0

Tomorrow never knows: WNC disasters past, present and future


Even as the holidays come barreling toward us, some folks around the globe fear the mythical planet Nibiru may be doing the same and will trigger some unspecified cataclysm on Dec. 21. Notwithstanding the supposed end of the Mayan calendar, however, local agencies seem focused on preparing for more realistic potential threats. Although it may not be the end of the world, Western North Carolina does remain vulnerable to a wide range of natural and human-made catastrophes, including floods, blizzards, fires and even nuclear accidents.

PHOTOS AND VIDEO: Historic Pearson house demolished

The claw of the demolition machine chomped through the Pearson House like a metal jaw. With each bite, the historic home revealed itself room by room. A painting still hung in an upstairs room. For those present for the demolition, this would be the last time the “grand lady” would stand on the grounds of the Richmond Hill Inn. The demolition happened Wednesday, Feb. 1. (photo by Caitlin Byrd)

Battles and backlash: Local author Bill Forstchen on Newt Gingrich, politics and history *Updated*-attachment0

Battles and backlash: Local author Bill Forstchen on Newt Gingrich, politics and history *Updated*

In the wake of releasing the ninth book he’s co-written with presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich, local author/historian Bill Forstchen now finds himself in the throes of the Republican primary. And Gingrich’s huge win yesterday, Jan. 22, in the South Carolina primary, has brought renewed interest to the campaign.

Local Matters: WNC Union history, Ingles versus City Council and NC budget woes-attachment0

Local Matters: WNC Union history, Ingles versus City Council and NC budget woes

In this week’s Local Matters podcast, Xpress News Editor Margaret Williams talks to reporter Jake Frankel about the coming cover story on new perspectives on the “Marion Massacre” union strike, and with reporter David Forbes about Asheville City Council’s recent back-and-forth with the Ingles grocery chain, as well as their recent conversation with NC Treasurer Janet Cowell at a CIBO luncheon.

Asheville’­s black history honored on Burton Street

Last year, Leicester resident Valeria Watson-Doost submitted a letter to Mountain Xpress about an historic building in West Asheville’s Burton Street neighborhood that was slated for demolition (see “Wrecking Ball Swings Toward Asheville Black History,” Letters, May 15, 2007). “I did research on the building … and found out that it was built in 1924 […]

Smoked out: Camp Summerlane­’s conflicted history (Part 4)

Dave Alexander, a 23-year-old cub reporter for the Asheville Times, went to work early the morning of July 12, 1963. His editors greeted him at 6:30 a.m. with an urgent tip: Something big was going down around Rosman, a town near Brevard.

The remote, sparsely populated place didn’t typically make much news, but this day would prove an exception. The state Highway Patrol had called to alert the paper that a chaotic clash was going on at the newly opened Camp Summerlane, a few miles outside Rosman. “So I jumped into my little Volkswagen, and away I went,” Alexander remembers.

Summerlane was a little more than an hour’s drive from Asheville. About 8 a.m., the reporter reached the outskirts of the camp, where he found law-enforcement officers standing watch around the perimeter. Parking his car, he walked toward them and started to ask, “What’s going on?”