CHEROKEE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Last week, Cherokee County Council voted to apply for a $3.9 million grant that will improve the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail.
“Walking those battlefields, walking those trails. It’s a hands-on experience which you can’t get out of a textbook,” said David Smith, Cherokee County Councilmember for district 6.
The Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail, is not only an important piece of Cherokee County history, but American history.
“It was the final march for the Overmountain Men in the Revolutionary War,” Smith added. “A battle that led to victory of what our country is today with the Revolutionary War.”
The county has big plans for this 33-mile historic path.
“I believe the goal was for it to be a connection that you can walk the whole time,” Smith said. “The first one going from Overmountain Trail from Lake Whelchel in Cherokee County to Kings Mountain, the second phase will be from Lake Whelchel to Cowpens.”
Smith noted this huge project needs a starting point. So, the county is applying for a federal grant to get the ball rolling.
“The grant will allow the design phase to come in, which will then eventually lead to the actual building phase,” Smith said. “To allow the trail to widen in the area which will be better for pedestrians but also bicyclists. It’s going to make that safer too so we can all share the trail, so it’s just not made for one type of recreation.”
It will create more recreational opportunities for residents and visitors.
“Its economic development as well, it’s bringing in visitors to our county, so that’s great. It highlights these battle fields for education, history, to keep the history alive.”
And that takes dedication.
“Have this for generations to come and that takes work. You can’t just do it one time and it be there and you never have to look at it again. Its a constant improvement process,” Smith said.
Smith said the county is currently in the writing portion of the grant application.