Captain William Moore, Asheville
The memorial to Captain Moore is an unadorned bronze plaque attached to a seven-foot tall slab of rock. The rock is flat on the front, back and left side but angled on the right side. The appearance is much like a house cut down the middle. The inscription says Moore was the first white settler west of the Blue Ridge. Historically the marker should have said he was the first settler west of the French Broad River. Samuel Davidson was the first white settler west of the Blue Ridge.
HOME PLACE / OF / CAPT. WM. MOORE / HERE ON LAND GRANTED HIM IN 1787, / HE ERECTED THE FIRST HOUSE OF WHITE / SETTLERS WEST OF THE BLUE RIDGE. / CAPT. MOORE AND HIS TROOPS CAMPED NEAR / HERE WHEN ON THE RUTHERFORD EXPEDITION / AGAINST THE CHEROKEE IN 1776.
ERECTED BY THE UNAKA CHAPTER, / DAUGHTERS OF AMERICAN COLONISTS.
October 31, 1954
35.547330 , -82.633460 View in Geobrowse
Cashion, Jerry C. 1994. “Rutherford, Griffith,” NCPedia.org, (accessed March 6, 2017) Link
Folder 1: Letter, 1776: Scan 1, in the Griffith Rutherford Letter #2188-z, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Link
Folder 1: Letter, 1776: Scan 2, in the Griffith Rutherford Letter #2188-z, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Link
North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. “William Moore,” North Carolina Historical Highway Marker Program, http://www.ncmarkers.com, (accessed March 6, 2017) Link
“Edens Land’ Echoes With Sounds Like A Piper’s Melody,” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), July 10, 1955
“Moore Marker Dedication Set Sunday,” Asheville Citizen-Times (Asheville, NC), October 28, 1954
Unaka Chapter Daughters of American Colonists
Superior Court Judge (later Governor) Dan K. Moore whose family was descended from Capt. Moore was the principal speaker.
Moore moved to the area that became Buncombe County after the Revolutionary War at age 60 but his first visit to the area came in the fall of 1776 when he served as a militia captain under the command of General Griffith Rutherford. Rutherford’s expedition was intended to stop conflicts between the native Cherokee and encroaching white settlers. Additionally, they wanted to thwart British efforts at recruiting Cherokees to harass colonists during the early stages of the Revolutionary War.
On November 18, 1776, Moore wrote a detailed account to General Griffith of a foray with mounted troops that he led through the region. He described destruction of Indian towns and villages plus the brutal murder and mutilation of natives who were attempting to flee. Although Moore was at odds with his men over the care of Indian prisoners he was obliged under threat of mutiny to sell some of their prisoners into slavery and divide the bounty among his men.
[Additional information from NCpedia editors at the State Library of North Carolina: This person enslaved and owned other people. Many Black and African people, their descendants, and some others were enslaved in the United States until the Thirteenth Amendment abolished slavery in 1865. It was common for wealthy landowners, entrepreneurs, politicians, institutions, and others to enslave people and use enslaved labor during this period. To read more about the enslavement and transportation of African people to North Carolina, visit https://aahc.nc.gov/programs/africa-carolina-0. To read more about slavery and its history in North Carolina, visit https://www.ncpedia.org/slavery. - Government and Heritage Library, 2023.]
The marker is located on the 900 block of Sand Hill Road east of Enka, outside Asheville, NC. It stands a few feet off the road next to a residential driveway. A NC Historical Highway Marker (P-54) to Moore stands a short distance away.
Trees and bushes are planted behind the marker that stands along a country road.