The venerable old log house, shown in this photo has provided shelter for at least seven generations of the Silver family. It's matched timbers have withstood the ravages of time and weather and will continue to do so for many generations to come.
At present, it is occupied by a caretaker family who is in the process of restoring the years of wear and tear. As of July, 2000, it is nearly complete, with all the added paneling and wall paper removed. The original clay chinking is being restored. The interior is well underway to be returned to its original appearance.
It was built by George Jr., sons George III, John, and Jacob Silver along with younger members of the family. It was constructed in the early 1800s---over a three-year period between 1806 and 1809.* It stands in the tiny settlement of Kona in the mountains of Mitchell County, North Carolina.
*County historical listings and family tradition has it that the old house may have been built as early as 1795. This is doubtful in that George Silver and his family did not arrive in North Carolina until Christmas Eve of 1806 in the midst of a blinding snowstorm. In 1997, Homer Silver, who was residing in the old home at the time, told James V. Silver that he had found two dates carved in the logs of the bedrooms. Those dates were "1806" and "1809." This could possible be the beginning and ending dates.
Upon completion, the home was occupied by George and Nancy Ann Griffith Silver and their eleven children. George and Nancy left the home to Jacob who in turn left it to his son, David. Upon David's death in 1911, the home passed to his son William Clayton "Little Will" Silver who in turn left it to his daughter, Maude Silver Green who lived in Minnesota. Maude's brother, Homer, bought the home from her. The last occupants were Homer's daughter, Gail Silver Peterson, husband Gary and their family. At this date the home has never been mortgaged, insured, or in possession of any other than the Silver family.
The old home rests on a portion of the original acreage awarded to Johann Jurg (George Silver Jr.) Silver for service to his country during the Revolutionary War.
For those wishing to make the pilgrimage to Kona from the East: Exit I-40 at the east exit at Marion and take NC 226 to the first traffic light in Spruce Pine. There, turn left on NC 19E for seven miles. Turn right on NC 80N six miles [toward Bandana] to Kona.
From Asheville, take NC 19E to Burnsville. Then
left on NC 80N at Micaville, NC.
|Updated 08 February 2009, Barney Kaufman|