About Us




Newsletter Number Two
October 2, 2004

At The
“The Historic Pride of Clyde”

We can all thank God for sparing the Shook-Smathers House during recent flooding caused by both Frances and Ivan. Both times, the water came to within a block of the House, but not onto our side of the railroad. Our thoughts and prayers are and have been with all the people of WNC who have suffered as a result of the recent disasters.

The Chairman spent a week in Clyde during August. Though restoration of the House has been quite slow at times, the Architect and the Contractor are doing a good and careful job in light of the historic significance of the House. The entire Chapel (attic) has been stabilized and a handsome new roof is in place. After much preparing of the old wood siding, the exterior painting has begun. We are fortunate to have the assistance of Gary Cochran & Associates who are doing the fine interior work. Water, gas and sewer connections are all in place. An electric chairlift has been installed for those needing assistance from the first to the second floor, and a golf cart has been purchased for use on the property. Some work remains to be done, but fortunately, an Opening Date is fast approaching.

Our last Newsletter acknowledged the valuable assistance of several people who are helping our project: Bishop & Mrs. Earl G. Hunt, Mrs. Frances Hart, Professors Thomas and Sherman and their students of the Haywood Community College, Ray Rhinehart, Patrick Willis, Mrs. Ruth Morgan Jones and Ms. Nancy Jones. Others have rendered great assistance, as follows:

1. Vice-Chairman Frank D. Hall who had the brass light fixtures handsomely restored; also for securing a large lighted display case. (Other display cases will be needed.)
2. Board Members Bishop and Mrs. Earl Hunt, Joel N. Martin and Bob C. Smith for contributing furniture for the Museum Office, and David Conrad for transporting items to Clyde.
3. A wonderful group of volunteers who met with the Chairman for initial training as docents who will conduct guided tours throughout the Museum.
4. Janice and Julian Smathers who wrote oral history of the House, as handed down by many generations of the Smathers Family.

Fortunately, several organizations and individuals have made monetary contributions to the Foundation for the operation and maintenance of the Museum. We are very grateful to the following for their assistance:

1. The Town of Clyde—$400 for the sewer hook-up, and for complementary Township water (first 3.000 gallons) for the Museum
2. Asheville Elevator—$200 discount gift on the chair lift
3. Individuals: Bob C. Smith, Mr. & Mrs. Walton Garrett, Ms. Barbara Wishy, Sean & Kim Peterson, Ms. Debe Hale, Mrs. Louise Harrison, Bishop & Mrs. Earl Hunt and the Rev. & Mrs. James Hart.

If you know of authentic Shook or Smathers pieces of furniture or accessories, still in reasonably good condition, we would be pleased to include them in our collection of artifacts. Mrs. Ruth Morgan Jones, former Owner, has donated some priceless items, which you will want to see when the Museum is opened.

In a previous Newsletter, we told you of our legal status with both the IRS and the NC Dept of State, designating our Foundation as a non-profit organization. Monetary contributions, artifacts and furniture made to the Foundation are therefore tax deductible. We have had several inquiries about this. Just as with a donation to a church or other non-profits, you simply report gifts made to the Shook Museum Foundation to your tax preparer, or list it on your return. IRS has a master list which it checks for authenticity—you do not need the numbers.


• Completion of the Museum, ready to offer guided tours
• Quick completion of a very up-scale kitchen, ready to handle small catered affairs.
• The Foundation will conduct a vigorous fund-raiser for the purpose of erecting a small building on the property to accommodate a Visitors Center, containing two large handicapped equipped restrooms. We feel this is especially important in order to welcome handicapped guests who visit the Museum. Also, we want to be able to accommodate the many handicapped veterans who are returning from the Middle East. (we have already mentioned the stair glide inside the Museum.)
• With such a building, we also plan to invite all schools in the area to send students to the House on field trips, in order to learn of pioneer and late 19th Century life in Western North Carolina.
• Complete the landscaping of the entire 3.6 acres, using the wonderful ideas drawn by the students in the Horticulture Department of the Haywood Community College under the direction of the afore-mentioned Pros. Thomas and Sherman.

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P. O. Box 355
Clyde, N. C. 28721

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