When they come for the librarians …
As Americans, we’re banning a lot of books these days, perhaps 1,650 in the past year, censoring others, and coming after librarians and teachers. In North Carolina, too, at least six attempts have occurred statewide and here in the mountains, one in Waynesville and another in Macon County.
It’s not about the mill, it’s about the people
Two nights after we had dinner with our next-door neighbors, who moved here just about a year ago after one of them got a job at the mill in Canton, word began to seep out on social media that the mill would be closing, miserable and frightening rumors which were shortly thereafter confirmed by company executives to a roomful of employees and then reported all over the news.
Some regulations are very necessary, very good
Phthalates consist of chemicals you probably have not heard of. However, these endocrine-disrupting chemicals are ubiquitous in making plastics more durable and contributing to fragrances in cosmetics, such as aftershave lotions, shampoos and hair sprays. They also can leach out from plastics. Phthalates have been associated with low sperm counts and poor sperm quality/mobility among men and pregnancy issues with women.
‘Papertown’ through the eyes of a lifelong resident, historian
The whistle at Canton’s paper mill talked to me daily, sending the reassuring message that the mill was producing paper and employees were busy at their jobs. Security. Dependability. Reliable employment. Income. Pride.
Faith in our beloved Papertown
“Americana”: noun. Things associated with the culture and history of America.
“Grief”: noun. Deep and poignant distress caused by or as if by bereavement; deep sorrow.
“Nostalgia”: noun. Pleasure and sadness that is caused by remembering something from the past and wishing you could experience it again; derived from the Greek language, with “nostos” meaning homecoming and “algos” meaning ache.
The mill’s legacy looms large over Haywood
“The mill.” In Canton, as in hundreds of other towns across America, that was the only description needed to describe the factory that drove a small town’s economy, which generations depended on for their livelihood and some for their very identity.
When your child blossoms, all is good in the world
The earliest expressions of our daughter’s deep and abiding affection for cute, fragile creatures were frightening and very nearly catastrophic. When she was 4 years old, she liked carrying our helpless cat, Bubby Tomas, around the house with her arms squeezing his torso tightly as if she were performing the Heimlich maneuver, his eyes wide with panic, pleading for rescue.
Schools – and libraries – should bring communities together
It seems to me that when we talk about the spaces in our community for our children, we should be talking about what is safe, supportive and loving.
Transitions are hard on a mom’s heart
I’m the mom to two boys, ages 14 and 11. Both of them are currently on the cusp of a big transition. My younger son, Case, is in fifth grade and will be starting middle school in the fall, while my older son, Brooks, is in eighth grade and will be entering high school.
George Robert Ellison II — Thoreau in a jockstrap
Editor’s note: George Ellison, a renowned naturalist and writer who lived in Bryson City, passed away on Sunday, Feb. 19. Below is a tribute to Ellison by Don Hendershot. Ellison wrote hundreds of columns for The Smoky Mountain News, which can be read by searching our archives at smokymountainnews.com.