Mount Mitchell Tower to Be Replaced

Mount Mitchell Tower to Be Replaced

Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

March 8th, 2005, 3:30 pm #1


The Charlotte Observer reports the 30-foot high observation tower on Mount Mitchell is to be torn down in the fall of 2005 and replaced with a shorter handicap accessible tower or observation platform in 2006. No specific design has been made for the new tower. The present tower has falling concrete although it is still deemed save enough to climb. The division has hired Vaughn & Melton Engineers of Asheville to design the new structure. Estimated cost of demolition, structure and paving is $700,000. In 1888, a 12-foot-high bronze monument marked the grave of Dr. Elisha Mitchell, a UNC geology professor who died in 1857 when he fell down a waterfall on a mission to verify his measurements of the peak’s height. The mountain, formerly called “Black Dome,” was named for him. Between 1888 and 1915, a ladder about 15 feet high stood mounted on one of three poles that formed a teepee. Then in 1915 or 1916, the state built a wooden platform 25-30 feet high. That was replaced in 1926 with a castle-looking tower made of stone.
http://americasroof.com/archives/2005/0 ... e-replaced/
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Joined: January 22nd, 2004, 8:36 pm

March 9th, 2005, 5:24 pm #2

Since next week is the last week of winter, up until 7:34 AM EDT on 3/20, I'm planning on sneaking up a few more state highpoints before the season is over. Does anyone have any information on conditions for Mt. Mitchell (Commissary Ridge trail) , Clingman's Dome (hiking the road), Brasstown Bald (Arkaquah trail), Sassafrass Mountain (hiking the road) & Cheaha Mountain (hiking the road)? Any beta would be much appreciated.

Thanks!
Daniel
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Joined: January 26th, 2004, 5:02 pm

May 31st, 2005, 3:06 pm #3


The Charlotte Observer reports the 30-foot high observation tower on Mount Mitchell is to be torn down in the fall of 2005 and replaced with a shorter handicap accessible tower or observation platform in 2006. No specific design has been made for the new tower. The present tower has falling concrete although it is still deemed save enough to climb. The division has hired Vaughn & Melton Engineers of Asheville to design the new structure. Estimated cost of demolition, structure and paving is $700,000. In 1888, a 12-foot-high bronze monument marked the grave of Dr. Elisha Mitchell, a UNC geology professor who died in 1857 when he fell down a waterfall on a mission to verify his measurements of the peak’s height. The mountain, formerly called “Black Dome,” was named for him. Between 1888 and 1915, a ladder about 15 feet high stood mounted on one of three poles that formed a teepee. Then in 1915 or 1916, the state built a wooden platform 25-30 feet high. That was replaced in 1926 with a castle-looking tower made of stone.
http://americasroof.com/archives/2005/0 ... e-replaced/
I found that the old Mt Mitchell tower to be uniquely ugly. Had it been all stone or all concrete, it might have been nice. Instead it was what I thought was a hodgepodge of natural stone and concrete that did not look very attractive.
It reminded me of something that was all stone, damaged, and then a quick and dirty repair made to it.


I am glad they are replacing it.

Of course these are my opinions only, and others may feel differently.
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Joined: January 23rd, 2004, 4:53 pm

May 31st, 2005, 6:26 pm #4

I submitted a few antique post cards to the newsletter for future publications and one of them is of the tower on Mitchell. It is back when it was just a stone tower without the futuristic looking concrete overlook on top.
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Joined: January 1st, 1970, 12:00 am

June 1st, 2005, 2:49 am #5


You can get anything at Ebay. Here's a postcard of the Mitchell tower before the space age accents were added.
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Joined: January 21st, 2004, 3:15 pm

June 2nd, 2005, 6:17 pm #6

Conicidently, we are running a page of old postcards of Mt. Mitchell towers, and the one pictured in this thread is included.
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