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Leaving
Brevard and heading west on Southern Railway in the early 1900s there were
three stops before Rosman.  It was 4.4
miles to Selica, 2.7 miles more to Cherryfield, an additional mile to Calvert
and finally 1.6 miles to Rosman.  These
were brief stops for passengers to get on and off and for mail delivery. 

The
mail service to Selica began on August 2, 1901. 
It was discontinued with mail delivery transferred to Brevard on May 31,
1928.

More
than a hundred years earlier the first settlers were moving into the area,
which became known as Cathey’s Creek.  As
families came to the area there was soon a need for church services.  There has been much debate regarding the
exact date of the first Baptist services in what is today Transylvania County.  However, Cathey’s Creek Baptist Church has
established April 17, 1813 as its founding date.  Elder Benjamin King served as their leader at
that first service.  In 1822 he
officially became the church pastor, a position he had until 1840.

Flume from Cagle Mountain to Selica

Cathey’s Creek Baptist Church proudly boosts
of being the “Mother of Baptist Churches” in Transylvania County.   As settlers spread further into the valleys
and mountains of the area they formed churches closer to their own
communities.  These early churches
included New Prospect Baptist (1820), Blue Ridge Baptist (1836), East Fork
Baptist (1840) and Macedonia Baptist (1844).

The earliest school in Cathey’s Creek was a
subscription school near the church.  In
1908 it joined with Glady Branch School to form Selica School.  Selica was one of the new, modern schools
built shortly after T.C. Henderson became School Superintendent.  Selica School closed in 1957 when
Transylvania County Schools consolidated. 
Today the old Selica School serves as the Cathey’s Creek Community
Center.

On
September 19, 1909 the Sylvan Valley News
reported that the newly created New York, North Carolina Land and Lumber
Company would build a flume six miles long, from the head of Cathey’s Creek on
Cagle Mountain to the Selica depot.  It
took nearly a year to complete.  On
September 2, 1910 it was reported that the Cagle Mountain Flume was completed a
few weeks ago and the railroad switch is completed and nine freight cars were
places by the side of the flume to transport logs.

Symington Home

So,
how did the Cathey’s Creek community come to be known as Selica?  In 1881 Col. William Symington bought land
along Cathey’s Creek and the French Broad River.  He named his farm Tselica, a Cherokee word
for sparkling or whispering waters. 
Around 1900, after Col. Symington’s death, the whole area became known
as Selica—the silent T initial letter being dropped.

Photographs and information for this column are provided by the
Rowell Bosse North Carolina Room, Transylvania County Library.  Visit the NC Room during regular library hours
(Monday-Friday) to learn more about our history and see additional
photographs.  For more information,
comments or suggestions contact Marcy at
[email protected] or 828-884-3151 X242.

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(828) 884-3151

212 S Gaston St, Brevard, NC 28712