Folk Heritage Association  of Macon County, NC

                                                                                          Linking our past to our future


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Our Story

The Folk Heritage Association of Macon County (FHAMC) is dedicated to preserving and sharing the culture and folkways of our Southern Appalachian Mountains. In this world of instant gratification and communication, unique and important lessons can be learned from the lives of those whose survival depended on ingenuity, hard work, and mutual help and support from their neighbors.


The founding members understood that with the increasing development and changing life-styles in our county, this priceless heritage was in danger of being lost, simply by our indifference and neglect.


According to Webster’s dictionary, heritage is “the culture which is handed down to one by ancestors”; history is defined as “recorded narrative of past events”. For many years, the Macon County Historical Society has worked at preserving the history -- records, deeds, letters, pictures, genealogical records, and small artifacts -- and presenting them through the Historical Museum. This is an invaluable resource for our area.


As one of the founders of the FHAMC, Shirley Ridge, said, “Heritage is the living part of us; more than just reading or learning, it is a part of who we are.” The FHAMC was organized to preserve this “living heritage” of Macon County. Our immediate goal was to develop a showcase for demonstrating the everyday skills, crafts, and music; the long range goal was the creation of a permanent Heritage Center.


With wide community support, the Franklin Folk Festival was launched in 2004, and it has become one of the leading festivals in the region. It is produced entirely by volunteers, and in 2009, over 5600 hours of volunteer time was donated.


On the third Saturday in July every year, downtown Franklin comes alive with over 100 heritage demonstrations and exhibits, farm exhibits, kid’s games, youth talent show, heritage foods, car show, and music all day. In addition, there is a Civil War Encampment and Re-enactment, and an Early Farm Days Tractor Show. Everything comes together for a Heritage Parade down Main Street at 11:00. In addition, a special exhibit on 441S will showcase historic quilts made here in Macon County and other textile demonstrations.

Through much research and creative thinking, plans are progressing to create a Living Heritage Center that would have a three-fold purpose: (1) to preserve the cultural heritage; (2) to serve as an educational resource for the region, and (3) to enhance economic development of all of WNC by becoming a tourist destination. This center would provide a wide range of interactive activities demonstrating life as it used to be. Community leaders in business, education, economic development, and tourism, plus the town and county governments are working together to make this a reality.
We encourage others to step forward and become part of this effort, for it is about each of us, both native and newly arrived; those who lived it, and those who wish to understand it.


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Contact Us


Macon County NC Folk Heritage Association
PO Box 1416
Franklin, NC 28744


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copyright: 2007 -2012 Folk Heritage Association of Macon County, NC

copyright: 2007 -2008 Folk Heritage Association of Macon County, NC