Amos Owens, aka Uncle Amos, aka the Cherry Bounce King, moonshiner and honorable man, called Rutherford County, NC home. He and his Cherry Bounce moonshine were the inspirations for the beautiful driving tour, the Cherry Bounce Trail.
“One of the most colorful moonshiners to grace a federal court during the post Civil War period was Amos Owens, widely known as the “cherry bounce king” of Rutherford County, North Carolina. Owens’ “bounce” formula was a generous portion of his finest corn whiskey, with a few dashes of sourwood honey and cherry juice added, the juice, so it was said, having been trod from the cherries by the bare feet of his beautiful daughters, in true Old World style.” ~ remembercliffside.com, excerpt from the definitive history of blockading, moonshining and bootlegging in the Appalachians and beyond by a Mr. Dabney
Rutherford’s Leadership Class of 2006 put together the trail as their class project. They describe it as a “historic byway in Rutherford County, NC, filled with natural beauty, historic sites and the memories of old-time moonshiners who frequented these hills and valleys years ago.”
It’s a beautiful drive, updated recently with clearly marked Cherry Bounce Trail signs, historic markers and points of interest, with occasional shops, restaurants and lodging along the way. Part of the trail runs alongside the Overmountain Victory National Historic Trail.
Want to know more before hitting the road? Read this description of the trail from BlueRidgeHighlander.com.
Trail brochures may be available at the Rutherford County Visitors Center, 117 West Court Street, Rutherfordton, NC 28139, Phone:828-287-6113, Toll Free: 800-849-5998, and in some Rutherford County shops.