Began as part of the Southern Slate Company. The land adjacent to the Civil War ironworks site, east of Tellico, was reorganized in 1893. Mining-included coal, copper, lead, zinc, mica and iron. Eventually operations began on a quarry to sell slate, marble or limestone. Locally termed the "Glory Hole" the area included a silo constructed for storage, the Roofing industry provided a market for the pulverized slate for the booming business.
Dr. William Alfred Rogers born in Violet, North Carolina, and one of six other doctors in Tellico, had a thriving practice near the present day Telephone Company. He also supported a small stone house across the road, downtown, and later a very large three story stone house constructed on top of Unicoi Mountain. The high altitude he thought one day would help his chronic patients. He and his wife lived on the mountain for about six years until the idea for turning the silo into a hotel sprang to life. He divided the space horizontally and vertically to provide 'apartments'. Rumor has it just as he was about to open it, the fire Marshall came to inspect it. He stated that the structure did not have two clear exits from any room in the structure, and therefore, could not be operated as 'Doc' had planned. So he and Mrs. Rogers moved into the Roundhouse in 1957 and continued his practice until his death ten years later.
This image by Tellico Plains native Teri Atkins depicts the Roundhouse in its glory day around 1960. Complete with awnings and a canoe for the nearby creek, which feeds into Tellico River. Pictured: "Doc" Rogers and Carlie Akins.
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