Southern Appalachian Digital Collections

Western Carolina University (21) View all

Road construction on NC 10

  • wcu_picturing-5944.jpg
  • This image, showing road construction on NC 10--which later became US 19--as well as Joel and Fannie Moody Gibson’s home, was taken by “Doc” Kelly Bennett (1890-1974). The home and ones beyond it are believed to be Sears and Roebuck kit homes. The columns would have been locally made at Bryson City Pump Works or Carolina Wood Turning Company. The home was last owned by the heirs of Oscar and Pearl Martin, who bought the home in 1944. Bennett was a prominent pharmacist in Swain County, NC. Owner of the Bryson City Drug Company, Bennett served as alderman and mayor of Bryson City, on the Swain County Board of Education, as well as several terms as NC State Senator and NC State Representative. He participated in numerous other initiatives and organizations. Known as the “Apostle of the Smokies,” Bennett was an instrumental figure in the movement to create the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. He was also an avid photographer, skillfully documenting a wide variety of people, places, and events in Swain County and the surrounding area.