Cherokee Heritage Itinerary -- Stop 5 Stecoah Valley Center
Coming from Cherokee, take 19 to Route 28. Follow 28 southwest, through Bryson City and southwest towards Robbinsville. Before reaching Robbinsville, turn left on SSR 1228, and follow it to the Stecoah Valley Center, the stone school building at the end of 121 Schoolhouse Road.
The Stecoah Valley lies outside of Robbinsville, separated from town by the Cheoah Range. An impressive rock school building built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s serves as a museum and gathering-place in this valley. The Stecoah Valley Center has information panels about the nearby site of an ancient Cherokee town, and about the life of Tsali , an important figure in the resistance to the Cherokees’ forced removal on the Trail of Tears. Tsali was from nearby Wesser, just over the Swain County line, and was ultimately executed by the U. S. Army.
The Stecoah Valley Center also has exhibits on the traditional life of the white mountain residents, and it hosts classes and bluegrass and oldtime music concerts throughout the year
Photo: Cherokee musician and language expert Eddie Bushyhead, with Kituwah Mound in the background. Kituwah Mound can be seen from Route 19, about seven miles west of Cherokee on the way towards Bryson City; photo by Cedric Chatterly.
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