Reuben Deaver
28 May 1807 - 23 May 1852
Reuben Deaver established, in 1830, the original resort hotel at the sulphur springs in what is
now West Asheville, NC.

"West from Asheville some four miles [a] . . . resort was developed at the sulphur springs
discovered in 1827 by Robert Henry and his servant. There three years later Henry's son-in-law,
Colonel Reuben Deaver, built a resort hotel, and by 1848 it was . . . village-like, with a little
cluster of buildings which could accommodate two hundred guests and their accompanying
servants and horses. Stopping there that year on his journey through the mountains, Charles
Lanman found the resort occupied, apparently to capacity, by South Carolinians from Charleston
and Georgians from Augusta. He was deeply impressed by the magnificence of the resort itself
and was charmed with the delightful guests and pleasing entertainment they enjoyed. He
declared that both in natural beauty and in the society gathered there, Sulphur Springs was
superior to the better known Saratoga Springs in New York."

-- Ora Blackmun,
Western North Carolina: Its Mountains and Its People to 1880, Appalachian
Consortium Press, Boone, NC, 1980, p. 295.

"On the last day of February, 1827, Robert Henry and his slave Sam discovered this spring, five
miles west of Asheville, and about 1830 his son-in-law, Col. Reuben Deaver, built a wooden hotel
on the hill above and began taking summer boarders. Such was the patronage that an addition
had to be made to the hotel every year. As many as five hundred are said to have been there at
one time, and the neighborhood was ransacked for beds, bedding, chairs, and provisions. . . .

"Besides the hotel, an L-shaped building, there were cabins on the grounds. There were bowling
alleys, billiard tables, shuffle-boards, and other games. A large ball-room and a string band,
composed of free negroes from Charleson and Columbia, provided the music for dancing. . . .

"From its opening till 1860 there were more summer visitors at Deaver's Springs than in
Asheville. . . .

"The old hotel was burned in December, 1862, was rebuilt by E. G. Carrier--of brick this time--in
1887 (
see early photo), and known, first as Carrier's Springs and then as The Belmont. It was
again burned in September, 1891, while under the management of Dr. Carl Von Ruck. From
1889 till 1894 an electric railway ran from Asheville to the spring, but it was abandoned."

-- John Preston Arthur,
Western North Carolina: A History (1730-1913), Raleigh, NC, 1914, pp.
502-503.
WNC Timeline

Please send corrections, notes, and photos.

www.childers-shepherd.org, 4 Jan 2010