Several families lived in village that had advanced modern conveniences at the time such as electricity, telephones and running water. The children went to school in a building used as both a school and church.
In all there were 15 buildings located on the far side of the Ocoee River including a hotel. There were no roads or cars — just a small railroad that ran in front of the buildings.
The property is now controlled by TVA and Cherokee National Forest. Only the foundations and an overgrown tennis court remain. Chattanooga State Community College student Will Moore has decided to produce a documentary about this piece of history.
Moore explained, “The village was closed in the early 1940s and today, only a few people who lived or visited Caney Creek are still around. If they were born in 1942 at Caney Creek just when the community was closed, they would be 70 years old today. If there is one thing I have learned growing up in a house with my parents, Ron and Debbie Moore — hosts of the local history show, ‘Old Town Cleveland,’ — it’s that history needs to be saved. This is an important part of Appalachian history that is on the verge of disappearing except for a few articles, stories and pictures.”
Will Moore Media has arranged, with the cooperation of TVA, to film on the Caney Creek location later this month and several people who lived in the community as small children have been scheduled to do interviews. Local Cleveland musician John Cook has written three original songs for the project.
Moore is looking for additional pictures, stories and memorabilia about the families, the Powerhouse project and the homes of Caney Creek. Moore can be contacted at Will Moore Media at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 423-715-2399.
In addition to this documentary, Will Moore Media as begun collecting 8mm film, videos, pictures, stories and other items to produce a documentary on the Cleveland Speedway. The Cleveland Speedway opened in April 1954. Anyone with movies, photographs or information are asked to contact Moore.
For more information, call Will Moore Media at 559-1541 or go to www.willmooremedia.com.