(Submitted by Zach Crawford) April 17, 2023

In the mid-1700s, European colonists began traveling south from Philadelphia. They primarily used an established Native American path called the “Warrior’s Path.” Before the Europeans began to improve it, it was only passable by foot or horseback. They widened the trail to make it big enough for their wagons to travel. It then became known as the “Great Wagon Road.”

The “Great Wagon Road” began in Philadelphia, winding all the way into present day Georgia. It was crucial to the development of North Carolina, passing through the western Piedmont. Many eastern and southern families set their roots using this road.

The Siniard family migrated from France, making their way to Pennsylvania by the 1730s. The family uses the “Great Wagon Road” to travel south into North Carolina. The family settled in the Cathey’s Creek area of Transylvania County. Nellie Lee Glazener, whose family immigrated from Germany and settled in present day Rosman in the late 1700s, married James Siniard. The two of them began a long line of Transylvania County families.

In the Mountain Legacies exhibit of the Transylvania Heritage Museum sits a large case that contains multiple family Bibles. One of them, from 1797, belonged to Nellie Lee Siniard.

The museum archives is home to many artifacts that can be traced directly to Transylvania County residents and events. For more information on our archives or to donate artifacts, reach out to

The Transylvania Heritage Museum, located at 189 West Main Street in Brevard, is open Thursday-Saturday from noon to 4 pm. Anyone interested in becoming a Docent or volunteering in any capacity can contact Rebecca Suddeth at or by calling the Museum at 828-884-2347.

Photo Caption: 1797 Bible that belonged to Nellie Lee Siniard on display at the THM.

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