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About seven miles from Saluda is what is known as
the Green River Cove; fifty years ago it was the garden
spot of Polk County. There were a lot of people living
there then - most all were farmers. They raised a lot of
produce and fruits of all kinds. They could sell most all
they grow in Saluda and Hendersonville. You could
see them come into Saluda and Hendersonville with baskets
full of tomatoes, figs and peaches. They would furnish the
summer people with everything they would need to eat.
Besides there were two or three canneries down there.
There was a post office there called "Fish Top, NC." The
mail would come across the mountain from Dana, N. C. in
Henderson County. Thomas E. Pace was postmaster. There
was a church and a good school. Many good school teachers
got their first start in the Cove; and there were a lot of good
cooks, too, I happened to know one.
But what has happened to the Cove now? The old
people are gone; the young have moved to town; and the
land where there used to be big fields of corn, apples,
peaches, orchards, etc. has grown up in timber. And you
might see deer there now a Wildlife people have bought
a lot of the land. There is a good road from Saluda down
through the Cove to Mill Spring. There is one man who
lives in a little house by the side of the road. If you go
down there stop by and see him. He can give you a history
of the Cove. He is a retired music teacher and farmer. His
name is T. W. Bradley.
Before the railroad was built between Spartanburg and
Asheville there were only two main wagon roads through
this section by which people could travel, drive their stock,
haul their produce to different markets and bring back
groceries and other necessities.
My father told me how they used to haul salt from
Augusta, GA with a six-horse team. The road was up one hill
and down another all the way. My grandfather lived on
the Buncombe road near where the Tuxedo cotton mill now
stands. His name was Tommy Staton. He had a big lot
built of rails around his barn, and a lot of feed troughs.
Mother said he used to keep droves of horses, cattle, sheep,
and hogs that were being driven the road from Asheville,
NC to Greenville, SC. One night it might be cattle or
sheep or hogs, and the next night a drove of horses.
There were several of these places along the road.
Sometimes the road would be real muddy and they could
not travel very far in a day. There was also a place like
grandfather's on the old Howard Gap Road on Warrior
Mountain near Saluda. They usually carried a wagon along
with their own feed. Mother said they would ride a white
horse in front and everything would follow it. That was
the only way they had in those days to get the animals to
market. I have been told they would drive turkeys that way.
They said about sun down the turkeys would begin to fly up
in trees. The old Howard Gap Road was about a mile north
of Saluda and the Buncombe road, or sometimes called
the State Road in South Carolina, was about six miles south
of Saluda. Of course we had roads leading into these main