Description: On Hallowed Ground Mural
Dillsboro is most unusual. Very little has been written about it, so at first finding information about Dillsboro was difficult
for mural artist, Doreyl Ammons Cain. Beginning in December 2012 with the help of George Frizzell, Head of Special Collections at
the Hunter Library at Western Carolina University; Tyler B. Howe, Eastern Band of Cherokee Tribal Historic Preservation Specialist
and Amy Ammons Garza, the story finally unraveled.
William Allen Dills was captured during the Civil War and was sent to prison in Camp Douglas Missouri. He found some books on numbers at
the camp and studied about surveying. Once released he returned to Jackson County, where he became the county surveyor, met and married
Alice Enloe. Together they built a home and farm overlooking Scotts Creek and the Tuckasegee River. In 1882 the first train into the area
stopped on the Dills farm. So many people came that William laid out a whole town around where it stopped to service the visitors. The Jarrett
House was the first hotel built and he laid out the rest of the town with streets and lots and established a mail line with covered
wagons that traveled twenty one miles over a dirt road and Cowee Mountain to Franklin.
Meanwhile in the neighboring Eastern Band of Cherokee reservation, 3rd Principle Chief Nimrod Jarrett Smith (Tsaladihi.) was making
great changes for the Cherokee as well. A well-educated and well-spoken man, he was fluent in both Cherokee and English. He was
elected Principal Chief in 1880 upon the death of his immediate predecessor, Lloyd Welch. He exercised unprecedented power over and
influence among the Eastern Cherokee working actively for official US.. government recognition for the band as a tribe under federal
law and was successful. He was also chiefly responsible for the incorporation of the Eastern Band as a legal entity by the
North Carolina legislature.
William Allen Dills, his wife Alice Enloe and Chief Nimrod Jarrett Smith are honored in this mural which has taken Doreyl Ammons Cain nine
months to complete. A plaque honoring those who contributed was attached to the mural!
Artist Bio: Doreyl Ammons Cain
Born and raised in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina, Doreyl grew up
drawing birds in the sand on the dirt roads around her home. She achieved a Masters of Art through California
State University and has won numerous art awards including the Art in the Park Award. She has exhibited at the
Smithsonian and created art for the film industry in California. Doreyl is now creating public art murals and
art for book publication. She also has co-founded a non-profit
organization called Catch the Spirit of Appalachia.
Doreyl Ammons Cain and her husband Jerry are the co-founders of the Appalachian Mural Trail
and live on a nature preserve in the WNC mountains.
She is currently the acting Director of the Mural Trail. The honoring of our
mountain heritage through the arts is the core essence of the Appalachian Mural Trailís vision and now
it is becoming a reality through partnerships with other communities and organizations throughout the
Appalachian Mountains. Becoming a member of the Blue Ridge Parkway Association in September 2016 began
the first official step for the Appalachian Mural Trail, where the mural trail is featured in the Blue
Ridge Parkway Directory & Travel Planner, listed in their calendar of events with links to the mural
trail web site and featured in the Blue Ridge Parkway mobile Travel Planner application.
The Appalachian Mural Trail will draw high quality visitors from the Blue Ridge Parkway into the
communities where the visitors will eat, sleep and purchase from local businesses. These visitors
will learn about the community, itís history and see the amazing art rendered by the mural artists.
Quality of life for all will be enhanced. Employment of those artists who create the murals and the
increase in local commerce will create new jobs. The community itself will be uplifted through the
honoring of local culture through their own outdoor historical mural, as the mural will be accessible
to all peoples.
Doreylís art is a celebration of life and her love of nature. Using vivid colors she explores shapes,
design and expression. Coming from a career in biological art, she enjoys exploring the endless forms
of natural life. Painting in pastels, acrylics and mixed media on various surfaces, she creates commissioned
art for books, exhibits, collectors and hand signed and numbered fine art prints for festivals. Public Art
is her greatest passion, for she believes that art should be shared in communities to uplift the spirit
and raise awareness of lifeís beauty.