A snapshot of Junaluska history

By Shelby Harrell Staff Writer | Jul 10, 2013
Photo by: Courtesy of Ken Howle Pictured side by side are two photographs taken in front of Stuart Auditorium at Lake Junaluska. The top photo was taken last week as a reenactment of the historic photo, below, which was taken in 1913. The Lake Junaluska Assembly organized a photo reenactment to celebrate its 100-year anniversary.

Modern culture was captured in a photograph Friday when 600 to 800 people lined up in front of Stuart Auditorium at Lake Junaluska to re-enact a photo that was taken at the same place 100 years ago.

The replicated photo will be hung in the Lake Junaluska Welcome Center right next to the photo from 1913. Viewers will be able to compare the two and observe cultural differences from the two time periods.

Ken Howle, director of advancement, said the photo was just one way the staff at Lake Junaluska was celebrating its 100-year anniversary.

“It’s just one way of marking a milestone,” Howle said. “This is significant of the centennial as a whole — the celebration of 100 years of transforming lives, and we’re celebrating the next 100 years of transforming lives.”

Jack Ewing, executive director of Lake Junaluska Assembly, said the photo was an important part of Lake Junaluska history.

“The picture that was taken 100 years ago continues to be used by us today as an example of the energy of Lake Junaluska,” Ewing said. “Those who show up for the photo are going to be used in 50 years or 100 years to reflect today’s people from Lake Junaluska.”

Ewing said some of the main differences between the historic photo and a modern would be the color and facial expressions.

“Just the color of the clothes will be different,” Ewing said. “And I think we’ll see many more smiles on the faces on this one than the old one. It’s our culture today to get the smile. I like that — it’s reflection of joy.”

Ewing said he planned to have the photos displayed.

“I think if we can figure out a way to have them side by side and have it be a part of permanent display, I think people will ask questions like, ‘Why were they so dressed up 1913?’” Ewing said “I think the pictures will reflect the differences in culture today.”

Brothers Tom and Read Patten participated in the photo reenactment in honor of their grandfather, Walter Patten, who was one of the founding members of the Lake Junaluska Assembly and in honor of their father, the Rev. Brooks Patten, who was an active reverend for Lake Junaluska.

Brooks passed away in November 2011.

Read said all of Brooks’ grandchildren and his wife had participated in the photo.

“I wish dad could have been here to help,” Read said. “He was a child of the original assembly, so we had to be here today.”

Tom said he was happy to be visiting Lake Junaluska to celebrate its centennial week. He added that he had attended Tuscola High School when his parents moved to Lake Junaluska.

“I was the last of the kids, so I was going to high school here when our parents retired,” Tom said.

Tom added that it meant a lot to him to be able to see old friends at the lake.

“Coming here means seeing people we haven’t seen in 45 or 50 years,” he said. “We all came to the lake for the summer and so did all our friends. We like seeing the same people we spent our summers with.”

Brook’s wife, Virgina Patten, said she had married into the Lake Junaluska family.

“I came into this as a bride,” she said with a laugh.

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