History of Elk Creek and The Farmhouse
Located in Southwest Virginia, Elk Creek was established in 1760 by settlers migrating down the Shenandoah Valley to an area that today is referred to as the Virginia Highlands. These early residents of the Elk Creek Valley were of Scottish descent and were drawn to the remoteness of the area.
The pictured historical marker tells the story of Caty Sage who in 1792 at the age of five was kidnapped by a horse thief seeking revenge upon her father and sold to members of the Cherokee Nation. Eventually, Caty assimilated into Native American culture and through forced migration, made her way to the Kansas Territory. In a strange twist of fate, Caty was reunited with her brother 56 years later. The legend has lived on in ballads and stories.
Grayson County was formed in 1793, from part of Wythe County. It was named for William Grayson, one of Virginia's first two senators. William and Rosamond Bourne came to the Knob Fork area on the New River in 1765. They found eight other families already living here. William Bourne was elected as first Clerk of the County, at the first court session that was held in a log barn located on the Bourne farm, near the present town of Fries.
In 1850, the county seat was moved from Old Town in the eastern part of the county to Independence, a more centrally located site. The first courthouse was built in Independence and served until 1904, when it was condemned. A new courthouse was completed by builder E.L.Robbins in 1908. Today, the Historic 1908 Courthouse functions as the art and cultural center of Grayson County.
The Farmhouse at Elk Creek was built in the fall of 1914 by C.M. Poole and for years was operated as a dairy. Ownership passed from the Poole family and eventually the house fell into disrepair. One local story tells of a young boy following a cow into the vacant and empty house. Legend has it the cow made its way up to the second floor and out onto what at the time was a second story porch. Becoming startled by the bemused young man, the cow made a run for it, causing the upper level to collapse. The determined cow rode the falling porch to the ground and without missing a beat ran off the crumpling structure and into the pasture across the road. Other stories tell of the house being used to store hay and cure tobacco.
The home was restored and once again became a residence around 2005. Today, The Farmhouse at Elk Creek is an escape for one very fortunate family and their lucky friends. In addition, it serves as the headquarters for The Elk Creek Running Club whose members are varied and passionate.