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The French Broad (Rivers of America, #50)
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The French Broad (Rivers of America #50)

3.66 of 5 stars 3.66  ·  rating details  ·  65 ratings  ·  10 reviews
Wilma Dykeman spent six months in the early 1950's, driving with her husband through the mountains of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee to research this book. She spoke with local farmers and loggers, visited libraries and newspaper offices, and read numerous accounts of the history of the French Broad River bioregion. The result is a very solid history of the r ...more
Paperback, 371 pages
Published May 1st 1974 by Holt McDougal (first published 1955)
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Best Books Set in Appalachia
103rd out of 382 books — 557 voters
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North Carolina Setting and/or Author
163rd out of 200 books — 120 voters

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Community Reviews

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Excellent account of local history. Well written, and very interesting. Definitely deepens my appreciation of my local area. Well worth the read, and I absolutely suggest this book to anyone living in, or interested in WNC, or Eastern TN.
Read this in North Carolina at my and Wilma Dykeman's college. Brilliant before it's time.
A very entertaining book whether you live near this river or not.
After working one summer on the FB, I figured I should approach the next summer knowin a bit more about the river. This woman is the real deal. She knows Agiqua. From Cherokee legends surrounding the river to startup enterprises that always seem to fail, this book covers it all. If you paddle the Broad you already know that river has soul, this book reveals just how deeply soulful the FB really is.
Tim Jarrett
If you want to understand the mountains and their people, you could do far worse than read this book. The chapter on Jesse James Bailey, only man to be sheriff of two counties in the same state and the man who gave my uncle his job, is worth the price of admission.
David Ward
The French Broad by Wilma Dykeman (Rhinehart and Co. 1955) (917.68). The French Broad is a mountain river in North Carolina and Tennessee that drains the basin between the Great Smokies and the Blue Ridge. This is the story of the river and the people that settled its valleys. My rating: 7/10, finished 2007.
Dykeman tells the history of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee by following one of its major waterways from beginning to end. She achieved a major triumph of early environmentalism by fighting and winning the right to include a chapter on the pollution of the French Broad river in this book.
Matthew T
Great for micro american history. A must read if you visit or live in the region of THE FRENCH BROAD
The title of the book may give an incorrect impression of what you are going to read...get your mind out of the gutter and read some Western Carolina and Eastern Tennessee history!
Joy Pansiera
An intriguing factual history of the Blue Ridge/ Smokey Mountain area in the days of the Cherokee.
So much great information. Hard for me to get thru after a certain point. I might try to get it as an audiobook to finish.
Very interesting if you want to read the history of WNC in relation to the French Broad River's influence. Wonderful first half...lost interest after that and finished by reading between books that were more enjoyable.
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Wilma Dykeman Stokely was an American writer of fiction and nonfiction whose works chronicled the people and land of Appalachia.
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Other Books in the Series

Rivers of America (1 - 10 of 31 books)
  • The Kennebec: Cradle of Americans (Rivers of America, #1)
  • The Upper Mississippi: A Wilderness Saga  (Rivers of America, #2)
  • The Suwannee: Strange Green Land (Rivers of America, #3)
  • The Powder: Let Er Buck (Rivers of America #4)
  • The James: From Iron Gate to the Sea (Rivers of America, # 5)
  • The Hudson (Rivers of America, #6)
  • The Sacramento, River of Gold (Rivers of America, #7)
  • The Wabash (Rivers of America, #8)
  • The Arkansas
  • The Delaware (Rivers of America, #10)
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