Cherokee Farms History . . . page 3

Cherokee Farm at Cleveland, Tennessee no longer exists, not even a remnant.  The entire area has been urbanized, built upon and paved over.  Even the large lake which Harold built by damming a spring's outflow has been filled, paved and is now the parking lot for a commercial business.  The plaque commemorating Chief Walker has been removed for road widening, his grave is lost to history.  Nothing remains of the expansive house or the orchard.  A church now occupies the property, situated approximately where the old house used to stand.

In 1977, Harold and Florence Anstis's granddaughter moved from Florida, bought a farm in Dekalb County, Tennessee and named it Cherokee Farms in memory of her grandparents. At the time she moved, the rural area seemed remote. But will it last? trashing the neighbourhoodCurrently, urbanization is rapidly creeping into this "neighbourhood" and destroying the rural ways everyone lives here to enjoy. As the older farmers die, their disinterested children are selling the farms to developers who are subdividing the land into small building tracts.  Along with new condos and houses comes "convenience markets," constructed where cattle used to graze.

The rural countryside is becoming congested with people who are moving out from the cities, and when they come, they want city-style conveniences which destroy the rural atmosphere. The real "country life" is rapidly being choked to death, replaced with people who have no knowledge or appreciation of the old ways of doing things. Roads are being paved and congested with SUVs instead of mules and wagons. City water and gas lines are installed to replace the old homestead's spring water and firewood. Taxes are raised to cover the increased cost of fire and emergency services that the former city-dwellers demand. It is sad to watch a beautiful way of life slowly dying and no one mourns. No one seems to understand what is being lost. When it is finally destroyed by urbanization, it can never be recovered. A way of life will be gone forever, trampled underfoot by people who don't understand what they've destroyed.

While striving to maintain the old ways as far as possible, today with the fifth generation well under way, we are merging innovative technology with our grandfather's philosophy into a tradition for the new millennium and beyond. While maintaining traditional farming principles (yes, we still have Tennessee mules), we are moving into the global consciousness of web marketing and computer based industries. With more than 200 years of history behind us, we have solid ground upon which to stand as we grow into the 21st century, while preserving, as far as possible, our small niche in the woods.

headed home

Thank you for taking this walk through time with us. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did. Come back and visit us again soon! We thank C.S. (Clifford) Stonecipher of Cleveland, Tennessee, official historian of Chief Jack Walker, for his contributions to the early history of Cherokee Farms.

In our continuing efforts to combat the loss of "old ways" we've recently constructed a wood-fired masonry oven to bake in. This oven follows the ancient design styles and methods (although we did use modern construction materials), and is proving to be extremely effecient in baking breads of all types, as well as general cooking of anything that needs "roasting" temperatures. One firing can bake several loads of bread, followed by continiued baking (at the "falling" temperatures) of other items like baked beans, casseroles, stews, pies, and tarts. Please visit our new pages where we have posted a photo documentary and descriptive commentary.

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