BonWorth brought Community Shopping to Mars Hill Retirement Community to give Mothers and Daughters a chance to shop together for the holidays. BonWorth is An America Favorite Mother and Daughter Store that is a nationally recognized retailer of quality women’s fashion for over 50 years
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The first weekend in October when the air is crisp and all the trees are showing off there beautiful fall colors of yellow, orange and red,
you can feel it.
It begins for me around late August when all the students of Mars Hill University return to class. You can feel the energy of the entire town of Mars Hill shift. Around the first of September this little excited vibration will begin in your chest and as the month continues this little vibration becomes a beat that becomes stronger and stronger,
Then you hear them…
I am obviously not the only one affected in this way. For the last 48 years Mars Hill University has hosted the Bascom Lamar Lunsford Festival.
People come from all over the United States to witness and be a part of what is now a tradition in this area. The magnitude of this event will astound even the skeptic, in its history and significance.
Bascom Lamar Lunsford (1882-1972) At a very young age Bascom’s father gave both Bascom and his brother a fiddle and a banjo. Bascom was inspired by this and his Mother, who softly sang ballads and religious songs at church and around the house. The inspiration and love of this traditional music would last throughout his lifetime. He became recognized by playing at dances, weddings and other social occasions.
Because of his love and interest in preservation, Lunsford also enjoyed children’s songs, ballads, old spirituals and parlor songs. He always avoided racy or controversial lyrics.
Bascom was incredibly prolific as a song writer/collector, a recorder, and a performer. In 1922 in his very first recording session he recorder 32 tunes on wax cylinders for a song collector. He went on to record thousands of songs he had learned that are now archived under American Music at the Library of Congress. One of his most noted performances was at the White House in 1939 when he delighted the King and Queen of Great Britain with several ballads.
Lunsford also played a “Mandoline” an instrument with a mandolin body and a 5 string banjo neck, his trademark was his delivery, featuring a gravelly tight voice combined with high notes. You can hear the similarities in the early works of Bob Dylan. Music fans and historians quickly recognize the sweeping influence Lunsford has had on generations of performers. You can also hear this trademark delivery in ” Good Old Mountain Dew” one of many hits for Lunsford, that was also used in the very first Mountain Dew Commercials.
Lunsford’s gifts were not only as a musician. He had some interesting professions as well. He was a fruit tree salesman and traveled the region with a Cherokee beekeeper. He exchanged lyrics and tunes with wood be customers, in 1909 after finishing at Rutherford College he became a teacher. Later he would study law at Trinity College (now Duke University)he passed the bar in 1813 and became a licensed solicitor -even working several years with the NC Legislature. Throughout it all he never relinquished his love of music and his Appalachian Roots.
In1927 Asheville NC was planning a Rhododendron Festival. They asked Lunsford to invite local musicians and dancers to what would eventually become the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival. Still held annually, it is recognized as the first event in the country to be labeled “Folk Festival” Lunsford preformed there almost 40 years until he suffered a stroke in 1965.
Today Lunsford is remembered as one of the true musical treasures to emerge out of the Southern Appalachians . His legacy is preserved in the National Archives and in films, recordings and festivals. Mars Hill University in Madison County NC (Out Side Our Back Door) houses the Bascom Lamar Lunsford Scrap Book and Ballard Collection in its Appalachia Room. Lunsford’s instruments are also housed at the University and each year for the past 48 years the University host the annual festival named for him where performers grace the Lunsford Stage.
Bascom Lamar Lunsford died in 1972
However his Life and his music still live safely cherished and valuable part of our mountain heritage.
Essay by Timothy N. Osment
History M.A. WCU
“How Beautiful upon the Mountains…”
“Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” John F. Kennedy
Dr. Dan Lunsford, President of Mars Hill College, announced in 2013, at the beginning of the new school year that the school would change its name to Mars Hill University. According to Dr. Lunsford, “Changing the designation form college to university positions our institution to be recognized for what we really are.” The move connotes a more diverse and vibrant variety of course offerings, along with opportunities to obtain both undergraduate and graduate education in select fields. In short, the school is improving and expanding services for its students, alumni and faculty. Likewise Mars Hill Retirement Community had just finished renovations to enhance its ability to serve clients and their families. We believe we should follow the lead of Mars Hill University in positioning for the future. Mars Hill Retirement Community is a member of the Assisted Living Federation of America ( ALFA) and follows ALFA’s Philosophy of Care for Assisted Living:
- Offering cost-effective quality care that is personalized for individual’s needs
- Fostering independence for each resident
- Treating each resident with dignity and respect
- Promoting the individuality of each resident
- Allowing each resident choice of care and lifestyle
- Protecting each residents choice of care and lifestyle
- Protecting each residents right to privacy
- Nurturing the spirit of each resident
- Involving family and friends, as appropriate, in care planning and implementation
- Providing a safe residential environment
Building a retirement community on the Mars Hill University was the brainchild of Mr. Justus (Jud) Ammons, a developer, and David Ammons, son and owner, who manages communities across North and South Carolina. Mars Hill Retirement Community opened in 2000, and to this day it continues to be on the cutting edge in the retirement industry.
Mars Hill Retirement Community is located adjacent to the University and is one of the few retirement communities in the state that offers the educational opportunities, cultural activities and all other amenities of living on a university campus.
The prestigious Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre provides a world class theatre experience! The Heritage and Bascombe Lamar Lunsford Festivals showcase our mountain music, arts and crafts. Neighbors and visitors alike are thrilled by world renowned Bailey Mountain Cloggers, who assure that “senior audits” are not left out just because they may not be able to move about as they once could!
When saw we the sick or in prison an come unto thee?
And the King shall answer and say unto them,
Verily I say unto you, in as much as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Matt:25:39 and 40
In reflecting on her life, Carol Cox Ingram knows that her Christian faith has been the foundation for her life. She says, “Each step has been a preparation for the next one. Matthew 25:40 serves as the basis for the work I have done.”
Carol came from one of the dense, multi-ethnic neighborhoods near Belmont and Central, that confluence of streets on the northwest side of the city in Chicago. Her parents, Hazel and William Cox, were of Norwegian, English and Welch ancestry: they settled in the Belmont/Central community to raise their only daughter.
Carol’s journey from northwest Chicago to rural western North Carolina is one of the interesting turns and pivotal intersections that opened new horizons to a young city girl. Carol’s family was very involved in Christ Lutheran Church. She regularly attended Sunday school, was confirmed, sang in the choir, and was active in the youth group. After graduating from high school, her first two years of college were in Minnesota at St. Olaf. Her liberal arts pursuit was interrupted by a decision to enter a three- year nursing program at Lutheran Deaconess School of Nursing in Chicago, where she received a diploma and, after passing state boards, became a registered nurse. Carol returned to St. Olaf College to complete a BA in sociology.
When asked why she went into medicine, Carol chuckles, saying “I don’t know.” There was no family role model nor had she dreamed of being a nurse as a child. Nursing however, became her profession, and she pursued accreditation and skills at one of the country’s most distinguished nursing institutions. She received her Masters in Nursing Education at the University of Chicago where she was a student of Florence Blake, one of the two outstanding pediatric nurses in the country. It was Ms. Blake who urged Carol to apply for a traineeship at the Department of Pediatrics at Duke University.
Thus, began Carol’s affiliation with Duke University, where she began teaching pediatric nursing and later worked on a grant supported project in the Medical School’s Department of Pediatrics in the Cystic Fibrosis Clinic.
Soon after moving to Chapel Hill, she worked in the UNC Memorial Hospital in Chapel Hill in the pediatric department. Carol’s life in North Carolina was not all work and no play. Soon after arriving, she took an evening class in world religions at UNC Chapel Hill to enrich her interest in religion and expand her social life. She was successful on both counts, for in class she met a handsome young man from Avery County.
Eighteen months later, Jim Ingram and Carol were married in a quiet Christmas ceremony at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Chapel Hill. They settled down to work and raise their two children Mark and Kristi, but the call of the mountains lured the Ingram’s back to Jim’s roots. They purchased a forty-eight-acre farm. Jim was interested in horticulture and established an orchard on the property while working for a small local firm. Carol found avenues to follow her passion for nursing and health education.
Through a state grant, Carol, began nursing as WNC family grief counselor for families who lost an infant to SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). Later Carol worked as a nurse in a pediatric office and was the child health nurse for the Yancey County Health Department. She began teaching classes on SIDS at Mayland Community College which led ultimately to a full-time position.
Several years later, she became department head of the nursing program, serving in the capacity for nine years. “To honor beloved family member and long time head of Mayland Community College’s Nursing Department, the Carol Cox Ingram Scholarship was established by the Stokes Ingram heirs. This scholarship is a fitting tribute to Carol Cox Ingram, her life’s work and her devotion to educating future nurses.”
Carol moved into Mars Hill Retirement Community in 2005 and continues to be a teacher to all of us.
Through her grace and tenacity, while fighting Parkinson’s disease, Carol continues with the help of her friends and staff, to be active and involved in her church. She is a regular participant in adult education and is a member of the Villager Initiative and Caring Crew. She is part of a team that staffs My Sister’s Attic, a resale shop that benefits abused women and children. Inside the retirement community Carol coordinates vesper services which are held here every Sunday afternoon. She enjoys day trips, musicals, trips to the theater, and other activities with other residents of Mars Hill Retirement Community.
Carol’s children are grown now and have children of their own. Son, Mark and his wife, now live in Morristown, Tennessee and have two children. Her daughter Kristi and her husband live in Canandaigua, NY, and have four children.
It has been said of Carol Cox Ingram, a city girl who found herself far from the flat Midwest City of her birth, that she is a model of competent and caring professionalism. She also has a lot to teach about productive Christian living.
We can all be glad that Carol intersects our lives.
In 2008 Carol Adams, who is now a member of the Mars Hill Retirement Community staff, brought with her wonderful stories and unique souvenirs, of her travels throughout Europe. Once a month Carol shares another country and her adventures with our residents.
Residents and staff alike enjoy seeing her unusual costumes, and learning of the art, culture and the sampling of foods from different countries. Last month Carol elected to share her adventures in the Republic of China she spent thirty three days there traveling throughout the country.
To Carol’s surprise, four of our residents had also visited in China, a couple of them during WWII.
After Carol’s presentation she and the residents had a wonderful time reminiscing their visits in this foreign country, and discovering from each other how much the country and its culture has changed. Our residents are very impressed with Carol and look forward to her wonderful adventures.
Are you a Veteran or the Spouse of a Veteran?
• With 90 days of active military service?
• A discharge of any kind other than dishonorable?
• Age 65 or older?
If you can answer yes to these questions you should attend this event to learn how you may qualify for little known – little used VETERAN’s BENEFITS to assist with Long Term Care Expenses! Up to $1,950 per month TAX-FREE!
(Expecially reserved for Veterans, Widows and their Children!)
Mars Hill Retirement Community invites all veterans and their families to a special veterans benefits workshop host at MHRC on Tuesday, August 24, 2010 at 6:30 p.m. Please RSVP 828-689-7970 for this or future workshops!
Mars Hill Retirement Activity Room
Henry Shannon, born in 1921, began to hear whispers of a war in Europe in 1938 and in 1940 when congress passed the draft, he, like other young men knew it was just a matter of time before he would be called.
Born in Columbus Ohio, Shannon’s family was not rich, but his father, a carpenter and stationary engineer was able to take the family with him to different parts of the country to visit and to learn.
When Henry was old enough, he landed a good job that would help to protect him from the draft since the job was considered vital to national defense. Henry also had a girl friend.
“The love of his life, Ms. Helen.” Life was sweet, Henry escorted Ms. Helen to the movies one Sunday afternoon and when they walked out of the theater Henry heard the words “Pearl Harbor has been attacked! He had no idea where Pearl Harbor was and even less of an inkling how those words would accelerate his life into a blur of change and ultimately, that this news would take him into a brand new kind of military unit, to fight a war in places with names he couldn’t even pronounce.
“By Sunday night (of Dec.7) the government called up every person who was a military reservist and actually put them in route to military camps” said Shannon, who now lives at Mars Hill Retirement Community. “By Monday morning, all of the reservist where I worked were gone. Just gone!”
Shannon saw that he wouldn’t be deferred forever so he enlisted. But Shannon’s new outfit had more to do with bulldozers and ships. Desperate for the work that only bulldozers and trained crews could provide the US Navy had formed the Naval Construction Battalion in 1942 calling it the “CBs” for short.
That abbreviation soon gave way to the more colorful term “Seabees” and thus was born a new bread of American military man: They would build airstrips, the depots, and a dozen other construction projects crucial to waging modern warfare.
Shannon began his Seabee career in Fort Milney, New Guinea, building a depot for the invasion force slated to head from Australia. He was later sent to Subic Bay in the Philippines to build a railway station.
The Seabees were – and remain –a very distinctive legacy of that “day of infamy” that shattered a quiet Sunday morning. But Shannon stressed that lack of uniformity didn’t limit the effectiveness of this unruly group. Mr. Henry Shannon is the last living survivor of the 115th Battalion. “General MacArthur once said that ‘the Seabees were the most unmilitary outfit in the world, and there weren’t enough of you.’” said Henry.
Of Ms. Helen, she waited for him and Henry made her his bride after the war. They
had three girls, one of which settled in this area. Henry and Ms Helen planned to move here. But Henry took a detour after his wife of 51 years died and he traveled all over the world.
The vest you see him wearing has a pin to represent a destination in each of his travels.
Shannon retired to Mars Hill Retirement Community in January of 2005. Of Mars Hill he said,” Mars Hill Retirement Community is as good as they come and I’ve met a good friend here.”
“The Times of My Life” MHRC Featured Resident – JoAnn Allman
The moment you step into JoAnn Allman’s suite at Mars Hill Retirement Community you feel the warmth of your childhood. JoAnn meets you with a warm smile and a cup of hot cocoa. As you look around the living room you realize that she has some very rare antiques As well as an antique doll collection that would make any little girl’s heart skip a beat
JoAnn was born in Marion, NC. After her graduation from Glenwood High School, she and a couple of girlfriends decided to attend Cosmetology School in Asheville. Joann graduated and went to the salon at Belk’s and then at Stella’s Salon. She met and married her husband Robert during this time and designed a salon into the blueprint of their new home, this worked well as Joann could balance the care of her two children and her business at the same time.
Within a few of months Joann began to get stronger and needing less medication to make her feel well. She even started getting out more and driving again. She began quilting and making Amish dolls for her family and in 2008 flew off to Hawaii in search of fabric and a vacation with absolutely no medication at all! JoAnn states, “ I could not have made the trip a year ago.” “I am so blessed to be at Mars Hill Retirement Community and I love the entire staff.” “I did not realize how much depression could take away all your energy.” “I could not have made it much longer living on my own.” “ Now I’m driving and traveling again and my life has meaning.”