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The entire debate between absolute historic preservation and increased historic knowledge hangs on one word contained in the deed for the Nikwasi Mound, that being the word “explore.”

Steven Rice, curator of the Macon County Historical Museum, says that the town’s current beautification plans are a direct violation of the property deed. “The deed is very explicit on what can and cannot be done,” Rice said. Town officials state that no definite plans have been made yet.

The deed, which was drawn up in 1946, clearly states that the Nikwasi Mound “shall be preserved for the citizens of Macon County and for posterity, and the same shall be kept as it now stands and shall not be excavated, explored, altered, or impaired in any way or used for any commercial purpose ...”

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A Franklin couple and a Highlands man feel very fortunate to have received only minor injuries after they were involved in a plane crash on Saturday.

Tony Shuler and his wife Janet were flying with veteran pilot Gary Schmitt from Franklin to Brasstown, N.C., in a small single- engine plane when the engine stalled around 5 p.m. Shortly after it crash landed in a field on Waldorf Drive in the Brasstown community.

Schmitt and the Shuler's were airlifted to Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga, Tenn. The couple was released the following day, but as of Tuesday, Schmitt remained at the hospital in stable condition.

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In a stroke of serious luck, Darren Cagle, 45, of Waynesville, was miraculously saved from drowning last Saturday at Nantahala Lake.Cagle was canoeing with friend Ronnie McClure when he came up missing.

Christine Boyter, a Gastonia nurse, was nearby the ramp that McClure and Cagle were coming into and she noticed Cagle's hat in the water. 

McClure immediately went into the water to find Cagle.  McClure was finally able to locate him and bring him to the surface. 

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New water/sewer plan source of major conflict

Unbeknownst to most, a small civil war has been raging for several months in one of the quieter and more affluent corners of Macon County. Just west of Franklin, Mill Creek Estates has long been a favorite community for retirees and those seeking summer respite.

Tucked in a green valley cradled by the Nantahala National Forest, Mill Creek, with its shady bungalows, manicured lawns and 18- hole golf course, has always seemed more like a peaceful playground than a war zone. But last fall a battle broke out, waged mostly by email, that has threatened to spoil neighborhood relations and to strain the tranquility of lazy afternoons.

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Have the salaries of certified deputies with the Macon County Sheriff's Office kept up with other law enforcement agencies in the region? According to Sheriff Robert Holland, they have not.

During budget negotiations over recent months, Holland had recommended pay increases for the deputies in his department in order to make them more competitive with other law enforcement agencies in the Towns of Franklin and Highlands, as well as in Jackson County. At their June 14 meeting, the Macon County Board of Commissioners agreed to a compromise, raising the salaries of deputies an additional two percent above the three percent cost of living increase approved for all county employees effective July 1.

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Completion date for project set for November 2012

Trent Anderson, the construction supervisor with the NCDOT based in Andrews, is pleased with the progress of the work along Highway 28 North. He says that the work is moving along on schedule and the estimated completion date is set at Nov. 15, 2012.

According to Brian Burch, Division Construction Engineer, some complaints have been received from residents that live north of the project. The main residential concern has been that the road was being made into a four-lane, which Burch says is a “case of misinformation.”

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No charges will be filed in accident

An elderly woman was killed last Friday in a traffic accident on U.S. 441 in Franklin.

According to Franklin Police Department officials, Helen Chapman Hill, 89, was exiting the parking lot of the Macon County Community Facilities Building at approximately 4 p.m. after playing a winning game of bridge there for several hours.

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Suspects captured on surveillance camera at Ingles

Investigators with the Franklin Police Department are searching for two women suspected of stealing a woman’s purse out of her car on Saturday evening and using the money to go on a shopping spree.

At approximately 5:50 p.m., FPD Sergeant Matt Pellicer responded to a 9-1-1 call in reference to the theft of a purse at the Holly Springs shopping center on US 441 North.

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Officers with the Highlands Police Department are searching for a man who attempted to rob a local business on the night of Monday, June 13.

At approximately 10 p.m., while preparing to close down the Farmers Market convenience store, a female clerk was approached by a disguised male at the store entrance and physically directed to empty the cash register. According to reports, the man had never displayed any weapon.

As the man made his way into the store and demanded the money, another patron entered the store and “spooked” the wouldbe robber, according to Highlands Police Chief Bill Harrell. “The man had fled on foot and at this time we do not know which direction he went,” he said. “We’re following any and all leads.” Harrell added that there is a person of interest that investigators have their eye on.

In less than a minute, HPD officers were on scene after the clerk called 9-1-1.

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Authorities in Rabun County arrested a Franklin man Friday night on multiple charges stemming from the theft of a motor vehicle.

At approximately 10:15 p.m., 27- year-old Steven Gerald Knight, of Conley Street, was arrested on Dunlap Street in Clayton, Georgia. Knight was charged with theft by bringing stolen property, theft by taking and failure to appear in court.

Knight’s apprehension stemmed from an incident reported earlier that day, when Franklin Police Department officer Christy Evans responded to a call referencing vandalism at Franklin Ford on US 441 North. According to her report, a concrete entrance post had been found lying in the parking lot of the business, along with other items.

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published: 10/18/2013
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