Lake Junluska — Celebrating 100 years

Diary entries from Lake Junaluska: 1947-1955

By Lucy Neeley Adams | Jun 22, 2013
The Rev. Woodward Adams Sr. prays over Woody and Lucy Neeley Adams on their wedding day. (Photo courtesy of Lucy Adams)

Editor's note: Lucy Neeley Adams, who has been a full-time Lake Junaluska resident since 2000, kept a diary of her experiences as a summer visitor there.

Adams not only met her husband at the Lake, but all three of their sons met their future wives there. While their daughter spent plenty of time at the Lake, as well, she is the only family member who found love elsewhere.

Adams shares diary excerpts below.


June 1947    It Was A Great Day


My family moved into our new little home for the summer.  From Columbia, South Carolina, it was a nice to get out of the summer heat, but the best part was making friends and having fun for the next seven summers at what I called, the most wonderful place on earth. My daddy was a builder and on the vacant lot in front of the Lake, the little garage apartment was built just for us.  He named it Mar-Luce for my sister, Margaret, my  mother and me, Louise.


July 1948  - It Was A Great Day


Here I am again, with my sister Margaret and our parents.  The big event was her wedding day and I was her maid of honor. It was only the second and last wedding that was held in Stuart Auditorium.


Sept. 20 -  It Was a Sad Day -


Remembering the Junaluska summers was a sad /happy time as I wrote in my diary when I got back home and started school: Dear Diary, I have never realized until these days I have been away from Junaluska how much I love that place. It means so much to me.  Gives me such a wonderful outlook on life.  All the people, young and old are so kind.  Anybody who isn't a Christian and wants to be one just go to that place.  Nobody ever thinks of doing anything wrong, even smoke or curse. All I think about up there is having nice clean fun and thinking of God and thanking him for the wonderful opportunity of being in such a place."


June 1949

The Junaluska summer experiences got better and better.  Since I lived in our family home, I worked at various spots as a waitress.  To top it off there were three important places to visit with friends after those work hours.


The Soda Shop was special because of the ice cream and other delicacies. Many booths were on a screened-in back porch.  We danced to the music of the juke box that had all the latest and most popular songs.  It was always unplugged, however, during the nightly church services in the auditorium next door.  During those times we just visited with our friends.


The swimming pool was another special place to go.  Although the exercise was great, taking a sunbath and being with the life guards and other friends for afternoon dates was best.  It was roped off from the rest of the Lake, and had two large rafts we always swam to for socializing.


The Boat House was great because it was full of various activities.  It housed the Gift Shop and the Junaluska Tea Room with delicious food and a large screened in seating area overlooking the lake.  The Cherokee boat was docked for the nightly sight seeing riders.  On one side of the building was filled with ping pong tables, shuffleboard and card tables.  Directly underneath was the parking space for canoes that were checked out for rent.

This delightful building was a great place to work. It is special to me because a boy I met that summer who worked at the Terrace Hotel, Woody Adams, came to visit me one morning "just for a chat".

Our short visit lasted for two years and our marriage in the Memorial Chapel was the highlight of all my Junaluska summers.

It is truly amazing that in 1951, four years earlier, I had written in my diary in August when it was time to go back to school in South Carolina.  "My hubbie will probably be one I meet at Junaluska — I hope !!!!!"    And it certainly came true.

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