Friday, November 4, 2011

SCONA LODGE-THE SEARCH CONTINUES

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photo compliments of Harold Lyninger
7AM finds me at a boat ramp on the rock quarry lake, Cherokee.  I wanted to be on the water at sun up but encountered dense fog when I approached the lake.  The fog is so dense I can't see the 22 foot long boat attached to the truck.
I'm inclined to set down a few notes that pertain to the old Alcoa Lodge named Scona, meaning across the water in Cherokee, that was built in the seventies on the bank of the Little Tennessee River.  I have previous blog entries relating to that place.  Scona was built by Alcoa Aluminum Company across the Little Tennessee River for the entertainment of the wealthy citizens of the area and visiting business people and dignitaries from foreign countries.  Alcoa annihilated the entire property in the early eighties.  All traces of the lodge are gone.  Not even a brick is left to mark its existence.  There are rumors of unsavory activities occurring at Scona that coincide with the many happy events that surely occurred. 

My question is why was the lodge property so totally destroyed?  The demolition is so complete that three associated houses, sheds, roadway and patios were all evaporated, vaporized.
courtesy of anonymous contributor
My interest in Scona has recently been revitalized by a person who visited my blog site and saw my entries on Scona.  She was raised as a child at Scona for ten years and her father worked there.
courtesy of Harold Lyninger
My contact with her via email is constant and I look forward to a meeting with her in the late Winter.  I'll say no more as I will protect her anonymity at all costs.  I've already learned incredible facts from our emails pertaining to Scona history that would be a shame to lose through lack of documentation.

This is all that's left of the fabulous Scona Lodge

It's almost all reclaimed by nature.
 There is nothing written about Scona on the entire Internet.  Scona is mentioned in a brief, short paragraph on Wickapedia.   I wonder why?  Why is it a secret about this place?  Why was it destroyed so thoroughly as to leave no indication it ever existed?  I'll seek to find the answers as I continue my meager, unprofessional investigation.

courtesy of anonymous contributor
Above:  Waiting for the husbands to return from a morning round of golf.

The Scona site is surrounded by rugged mountains on three sides and the waters of the dammed up Little Tennessee River, now Chilhowee Dam on the last side.  the Scona site is all but lost to nature's attempts at reclaiming her land and will soon do so.  Scona will disappear forever, as will it's memory, as people depart from this earth.  What a shame!  I intend to eventually write a complete history of Scona as soon as I have all the facts.

I would ask that anyone who reads this entry who has visited Scona Lodge or who knew someone who worked there to please email me or leave a message at the end of this entry. I will keep you anonymous or show credit for your contribution, as you desire.   I would appreciate it more than I can say.  Scona deserves a fitting entry into the history of East Tennessee.