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Books

These books may be available through a number of sources including the Mast General Store, Valle Crucis Conference Center, and online vendors.

Valle Crucis – A History of an Uncommon Place

Valle Crucis - A History of an Uncommon Place

Written by Harding Hughes, Jr.

This book, published in 1995, gives a detailed early history of this “uncommon” place. Mr.

Hughes’ family built the first summer home in the area many years ago. His father and his grandfather were Episcopal priests, who had connections to this sacred valley.

My Valle Crucis: The 1930s

Written by Harding Hughes, Jr.

My Valle Crucis: The 1930s

“Tapawingo,” the first summer home in Valle Crucis, was built in 1925 for the parents of I. Harding Hughes, Jr. The family enjoyed long vacations here throughout the 1930s.

After wartime Navy service the author went on to a career as a city manager in North and South Carolina. In retirement he researched the past of Valle Crucis and published Valle Crucis: A History of an Uncommon Place. Now he sets down his own warm memories – and the interesting and varied memories of numerous other people – of Valle Crucis in the decade of the 1930s.

Valle Crucis

Written by David W Yates, Photographs by William A Bake

Valle Crucis

“High in the Blue Ridge Mountains, between the shrouded peaks of Grandfather Mountain and the town of Boone, you must cross the Watauga River. Here, you will come upon two road signs. One reminds you that you are on an official Scenic Byway. The other simply invites you to turn onto a narrow road – the road to Valle Crucis.”

This new book, published in the fall of 1997 and reprinted in December 2004, celebrates a place of fertile meadows and steep, wooded mountains, a place where the hills rise like islands out of the early-morning mist – and, most important, a place eminently worthy of preservation for future generations. The pictures, photographed by William Bake, a student of Ansel Adams, are breathtaking. The text will transport you to this special place and, hopefully, will leave inside of you a feeling to keep this place forever how it is today, unspoiled and sacred.

Missionary Life at Valle Crucis: Memoir of William West Skiles

Written by Susan Fenimore Cooper

“Simple, earnest, and peculiarly kindly in countenance and manner, there was something winning about him which attracted a warm regard from his companions, while his uprightness, sound practical judgment, his skill and experience, soon placed him at the head of the working department.”

This 1889 book (republished in 1992 by the Valle Crucis Conference Center) by the daughter of James Fenimore Cooper, journals the life of a remarkable man, William West Skiles. Bishop Ives brought Mr. Skiles to this valley in 1844. Brother Skiles was the first man in the Anglican Church to take monastic orders since the Reformation.