Spring is in the air and Big Stone Gap is bursting at the seems with blooms, green leaves, and beautiful venues! Come down and enjoy all that nature has to offer in our parks, trails, and hidden gems!                                                                                                                                                      The Easter Bunny is hopping down to Bullitt Park where he will hide over 12,000 eggs for all the kids! Some of the eggs are special GOLDEN eggs that contain amazing prizes! Don’t miss out, Saturday April 1st!                                                                                                                                                                         A Town Permit is no longer required to access Big Cherry! Get out and visit today!

Dr. Lawrence J. Fleenor, Jr.

About The Author

Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr. is the author of The Bear Grass, a history of Upper East Tennessee and far Southwest Virginia. He has numerous articles on history and ethnology published. A life long resident of the region he writes about, he lives in Powell Valley in Wise County, Virginia with his wife Betty. He has been in medical practice in Family Medicine there for thirty years, and has Adjunct Faculty appointments at Mountain Empire Community College, Duke university Medical School, and at the University of Virginia Medical School.

You can purchase his books at :


Published works

Black Mountain, Mother of Today


Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr.

Coal, elk, Long Hunters, Northern Industrialists, Indians, land fraud, Judgment Day,
buffalo, Resurrection Day, Civil War Murders,
mine explosions, escaping the Trail of Tears, Black squatters

– All this and more –

The story of Black Mountain
on the Kentucky / Virginia border.

Appalachia Anthology


Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr.

A collection of short stories about the Town of Appalachia, Virginia’s founding and first fifty years. The essence of life in the Town of Appalachia, Virginia, during its founding and first half a century of its existence is woven together by means of a tapestry of short stories that come together to present an image of life there during its hayday. Then the “bust” is described in a heart wrenching ending.

Athawominee, the Great Warrior’s Path


Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr.

The Great Warrior’s Path, or “Athawominee,” was the centerpiece of Indian civilization east of the Mississippi River. Its many branches originated in New York and Pennsylvania, Tennessee, and in the Carolinas. It coalesced in Southwest Virginia and passed through Cumberland Gap into Kentucky, where it again subdivided. Athawominee’s western branches traversed Kentucky all the way to the Mississippi, and its northern branches went on into the Old Northwest Territory — the land between the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers.

For the Indians that used it, Athwominee was not only, and perhaps not primarily, an avenue to war, but was a means of communication, and above all, a route of commerce. It simply was the thread that held the Indian civilization east of the Mississippi River together. Later, it was the most significant route of emigration for settlers moving from the East to the interior of the continent. The only trail of comparable historic significance in American is the Oregan Trail.

The Bear Grass – A History


Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr.

A history of far Southwest Virginia, using a blend of factual data, new research, and oral tradition to tell the story of how we came to be who we are.

The Forts of the Holston Militia


Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr. & Dale Carter

Through a blend of new research and a thorough mining of historic documents, the story of the Southwest Virginia warfare is told as never before. The locations of thirty-seven of the forts used in these conflicts are newly documented, and the individual roles that they play are presented.



Dr. Lawrence J Fleenor, Jr.

Biography of the famed Cherokee Chief with photos, maps, genealogy charts, and historic documents.