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Museums in Western North Carolina

Western North Carolina has a rich culture consisting of arts and crafts made by some of the finest artisans in the country. Paintings, hand woven baskets, wood crafts, stained glass, pottery, quilts and quilt wall hangings, photography are among some of the finer works.
     
Maggie Valley Museums
     

Wheels Through Time
62 Vintage Lane
Maggie Valley, North Carolina 28751
(828) 926-6266

Home to the world’s premier collection of rare American Vintage Motorcycles. This All-American motorcycle museum houses over 300 of America’s rarest and most historic classic motorcycles, with over 24 marques on display, including the likes of Harley-Davidson, Indian, Excelsior, Crocker, Henderson, and much more.

   
     
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Cherokee, NC Museums
     
Museum of the Cherokee Indian
564 Tsali Blvd. (Hwy 441)
Cherokee, NC 28719
(828) 497-3481

The museum offers exhibits depicting the lives of the Cherokee from Pre 8,000 BC to 1,500 AD. A new $3.5 million dollar exhibit tells the story of the Cherokee and their ancestors from twelve thousand years ago through the present. Learn who the Cherokee are and why they are still here.

Fifty photographs of contemporary locations on the Trail of Tears are on display along with a reproduction of the 1838 protest roll containing 15,562 Cherokee names. The Trail of Tears National Historic Trail covers more than 1,200 miles through nine states from North Carolina to Oklahoma.



Oconaluftee Indian Village
589 Tsali Blvd (828) 497-3481
Cherokee, NC 28719
(828) 497-3481

See how the Cherokee lived before they were forced to leave their beloved land and walk the "Trail of Tears". See cultural dances and interact with villagers as they hull canoes, make pottery, create masks, weave baskets, fashion beadwork, and participate in their daily activities. Experience live reenactments, interactive demonstrations, and “Hands-On Cherokee.”

 
Oconaluftee Farm Museum
Hwy 441, Oconaluftee Visitor Center
Cherokee, NC 28719

The Mountain Farm Museum, situated on the banks of the Oconaluftee River just inside Great Smoky Mountains National Park, is a collection of of southern Appalachian farm buildings assembled from different locations throughout the Park.

The farmstead has a crop in the field with the Smoky Mountains as a back drop. Live farm animals are raised during the summer. Visitors are welcome to visit the chestnut log farmhouse, barn, hen house, apple house, springhouse, and blacksmith shop.

During the summer months, Great Smoky Mountains National Park staff and volunteers give demonstrations of traditional Smoky Mountain ways at the Mountain Farm Museum, including black-smithing, plowing, and molasses making.
     
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Bryson City, NC Museums
     
Smoky Mountain Trains
100 Greenlee St.
Bryson City, NC 28713
(828) 488-5200

A collection of 7,000 Lionel™ engines, cars and accessories, impressive operating layout, children’s activity center, and a gift/toy shop. The vast collection dates back to 1918 and features such classics as the 1934 Blue Comet Passenger set and the more recent Joshua Lionel Cowen Challenger steam locomotives.
   
     
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Franklin, NC Museums
     
The Franklin Gem & Mineral Museum
25 Phillips St.
Franklin, NC 28734
(828) 369-7831

Located in Franklin’s historic “Old Jail” across from the Macon County Courthouse, the Franklin Gem & Mineral Museum has thousands of specimens on display including a local ruby weighing 2 ¼ pounds! There are six rooms dedicated to the cataloging and preservation of gem and mineral specimens from around the world as well as those found in North Carolina and of course Macon County - home to the famous Cowee Valley where rubies and sapphires have been found for over 100 years! Admission is Free.

 
Ruby City Gems & Minerals Museum
130 E. Main St.
Franklin, NC 28734
(828) 524-3967

The museum contains an expansive jewelry case that holds everything from gold to silver, amethyst to diamonds, rings, necklaces, bracelets, pendants, and much more. There are also thousands of cut gemstones for the setting of your choice, finished jewelry, diamonds, and hard-to-find stones -- all backed by 3rd generation family jewelers with a wide range of services. Two rooms contain a variety of onyx vases and accessories, fossils several millions of years old, soapstone carvings, designer blown glass from San Francisco. Besides decor, we carry a full line of lapidary and mining equipment.
     
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Asheville, NC Museums
     
Biltmore House
One Lodge Street
Asheville, NC 28803
(828) 225-1333

The Biltmore House was a luxurious family home belonging to George and Edith Vanderbilt. It has been preserved by third-generate family members and remains as magnificent today as it was more than 100 years ago. A self-guided tour will take you through three floors and the basement where you will see displays of vintage clothing, accessories, art, furniture, and more that tell stories and illustrate the lives of the Vanderbilt family, their guests, and employees. You will also stroll acres of formal and informal gardens designed by America’s foremost landscape architect, Frederick Law Olmsted.

 
Asheville Art Museum
2 S. Pack Square
Asheville, NC 28801
(828) 253-3227

The museum features works of significance to Western North Carolina’s cultural heritage including Studio Craft, Black Mountain College and Cherokee artists. Special exhibitions feature renowned regional and national artists and explore issues of enduring interest.

 

 


For such as be blessed of him shall inherit the earth. Psalms 37:22


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