My Hometown

Murphy Travel Blog

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I grew up in Murphy, N.C. which is a small mountain town tucked away from reality with a population of about a thousand. It has its ups and of course it has its downs. However, it finally has a Wal-Mart (hehe) although not much else. Murphy is the county seat of Cherokee County and therfore holds the "official, government" business of the western region. In other words, the only courthouse for many many miles is in Murphy. The courthouse is one of the "places of interest" that people usually visit because it is completley made of marble mined from nearby. I have a personal connection with this because my grandfather helped mine the marble to build the "indestructable" building after a fire destroyed the previous courthouse. In all seriousness, the building is rather beautiful.

Downtown consists of two streets that intersect to make the town square. A lot of efforts have been made in the past few years to preserve the historic feel of old town Murphy. Now the building codes restrict the architecture that can be constructed making the square feel like the old mountaineer times. Life goes on in this square as usual and you will find the older men sipping their coffee while the women gossip about the townfolk. Parkers is a very old drug store that has a little cafe in the back that serves terrific hamburgers and ice cream and yes they go together :) There are plenty of interesting places to shop in this little section of Murphy as well.

As you head out of town you will find the old Henn Theater. It was recently sold, according to my mom, so I am not sure the name of it now. It has one movie screen and the same seats that was in it when it opened way back in the 1900's.  Murphy is a small conservative town and so they only play G-rated movies or Disney films. If there is no movie to be played a show will be performed by the student theatrical group from Murphy High.

If you continue out of town in the opposite direction you will find the historic Harshaw Chapel. This is one of the oldest churches still standing in the United States and was the first church in western North Carolina. I bet you would have never guessed that a relative of Abraham Lincoln was buried here would you? Yeah, that is one claim to fame that Murphy has :) Another would be Fort  Butler, the collection point for the Cherokee Indians once they crossed the mountain. Not too proud of this one.

For all of you sports fans, Carl Pickens formally of the Cincinatti Bengals calls Murphy is hometown and began his football career as a Murphy Bulldog. He recently built his momma a huge house and in the back stands a large cross made out of chicken wire and filled with beer cans :) You can't make that up! For the rap fans, Jermaine Dupree also was born here in Murphy and rapped in Texana before leaving for the big time. For the crime fans, Eric Robert Rudolph, the fugitive of the Centinnial Olympic Park Bombing of 1996 and other abortion clinics was arrested in Murphy in 2003 by a good friend of mine. If you are interested in a bazarre story, I have a doozy for this one :)  

Murphy still has the small town feel to it. The people are friendly and always "throw their hand up" as you pass by, even if they don't know you. It is surrounded by the beautiful Great Smokey Mountains. You can golf, fish, hike, shop and plenty more.

For a relaxing place to vist, Murphy is a great option. However, if you are wanting excitment I would stay away. The closest excitment is about two hours away!
bkretzer says:
Hi Crystal--Nice blog! You write well and it was very intresting. I for one, would love to hear the Rudolph story!
Posted on: Jan 20, 2008
Chokk says:
Sounds nice - but it would be too small for me. Cute though. I have always lived near by or in big cities :D
Posted on: Jun 16, 2007
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