Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook

By Barbara R. Duncan, Brett H. Riggs

Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook

384 pp., 6.125 x 9.25, 131 color photos, 11 maps, bibl., index

  • Paperback ISBN: 978-0-8078-5457-0
    Published: April 2003

Buy this Book

To purchase online via an independent bookstore, visit

Awards & distinctions

2004 Willie Parker Peace History Book Award, North Carolina Society of Historians

2004 Preserve America Presidential Award for Heritage Tourism

Enriched by Cherokee voices, this guidebook offers a unique journey into the lands and culture of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians in the mountains of North Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. Every year millions of tourists visit these mountains, drawn by the region's great natural beauty and diverse cultural traditions. Many popular aspects of Cherokee culture are readily apparent; beneath the surface, however, lies a deeper Cherokee heritage--rooted in sacred places, community ties, storytelling, folk arts, and centuries of history.

Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook is your introduction to this vibrant world. The book is organized around seven geographical hubs or communities within the original Cherokee homeland. Each chapter covers sites, side trips, scenic drives, and events. Cherokee stories, history, poems, and philosophy enrich the text and reveal the imagination of Cherokees past and present.

The Museum of the Cherokee Indian in Cherokee, North Carolina, is the main interpretive center for the Cherokee Heritage Trails. Among the many other featured sites are Kituhwa Mound, origin of the mother town of the Cherokees; Junaluska Memorial and Museum, with a preserved gravesite and medicine plant trail; and Unicoi Turnpike Trail, part of the Trail of Tears and one of sixteen national millennium trails in the United States.

About the Authors

Barbara R. Duncan is Education Director at the Museum of the Cherokee Indian in Cherokee, North Carolina, and editor of Living Stories of the Cherokee.
For more information about Barbara R. Duncan, visit the Author Page.

Brett H. Riggs is a research archaeologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

For more information about Brett H. Riggs, visit the Author Page.


"[A] comprehensive guidebook. . . . Travelers are invited to look beyond easily visible aspects to find a deeper Cherokee heritage. . . . [The] writers . . . enrich the text with Cherokee stories, history, poems and philosophy."--Carolina Country

"A gem of a book."--Journal of Applachian Studies

"Both comprehensive and authoritative. A number of native American groups have added their distinctive voices to this volume."--Christian Science Monitor

"A wonderful introduction to the culture, history, and geography of the Cherokee homeland. . . . An essential purchase for anyone interested in exploring Cherokee country and what it has meant and continues to mean to be Cherokee."--Appalachian Journal

"Culture comes to life as the reader meets those who keep the traditions of dance, song, stories, poems, pottery making, basket weaving and beadwork--as well as the Cherokee language and philosophy--alive. . . . Whether experiencing the trails from a car, on foot or through the pages of this authentic guide, the reader of Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook is offered rare views of the Cherokee's beloved homeland and of the descendants of its original people."--Parkway Milepost

"Cherokee Heritage Trails Guidebook is your introduction to [a] vibrant world."--Blue Ridge Digest