A Possible New Future For A Sacred Cherokee Mound

Mar 8, 2019

Nikwasi Mound in downtown Franklin is a sacred place for the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Indians. The mound is currently owned by the town of Franklin.
Credit Lilly Knoepp / Blue Ridge Public Radio

The Nikwasi Mound in downtown Franklin, North Carolina looks like a small, grass-covered hill, but for the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians the site holds great importance.

The mound was a traditional meeting place for their ancestors and is considered a sacred site. The Franklin Town Council voted Monday to move forward on a motion to transfer legal ownership of the mound to Nikwasi Initiative, a nonprofit organization run in part by the Eastern Band.

The town of Franklin has owned the mound since the mid 1900s. Host Frank Stasio speaks with Blue Ridge Public Radio reporter Lilly Knoepp and Cherokee One Feather Editor Robert Jumper about the development and the response from residents of Franklin and members of the Cherokee community.