an old railroad track
in the Smoky Mountains
near Granny Squirrel, North Carolina,
the rain-slick rails and cross-ties
led into a tunnel dynamited
into the mountain.
This area is so historical
with the old railway,
an old trestle in near-by Murphy,
North Carolina, and is the beginning
of the Trail of Tears
for the Cherokee Indians
who were relocated out west.
The tracks between Andrews and Murphy are still in place but have not been in use since the late 1980s after Norfolk Southern decided to close the leg because of a lack of freight traffic. When the railroad began eying the rest of the Murphy Branch past Dillsboro for closure the state of North Carolina stepped in and purchased the tracks to...
After 30 years in the floral and plant nursery business, Debra and Dave Vanderlaan sold both businesses and turned their life-long photography hobby into full-time obsession. The Vanderlaans are both award-winning photographers and well-known both domestically and internationally.
Many of their images showcase the tropical landscapes of South Florida and the mountain vistas of the Smoky Mountains and many gorgeous scenes around the world. Their motto is Celebrate Life and that seemed a natural name for their gallery. Their images have been displayed in the Smithsonian Museum, North Carolina Museum of Art, Turchin Art Center in Boone NC, Palm Beach Photography Museum and many other museums and galleries around the country. Some of their...
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