Back in the Day…
By Barbara Hogan
In colonial days this densely wooded area of Rowan County was sparsely populated. Crossed north and south,
east and west by roads hardly traveled. There were trails that were often used as camping grounds by travelers from Salisbury
to Cross Creek or from northern parts to the Narrows of the Yadkin. Few deeds show dates earlier than 1775; but by 1800 state
grants had been made for most of the land which is Emmons Township. The earliest families had settled in this area before
their deed date. By 1790 there were in the four Southern Davidson Townships (then Rowan) by actual count 127 families, or
a total of 823 settlers.
Some of the largest landholders were William
Moore and Thomas Carson with more than 5,000 acres. Jesse Harris Jr. with plantations totaling more than 2,000 acres, Phillip
(Philip) Garner with over 1,000 acres, and Clement Lanier Sr., which is a direct descendant of French ancestors who were musicians
to the Royal Family of England for many generations.
In 1810 Matthew
Skeen Sr. sold his plantation to Ransom Harris who lived most of his life here and is buried in Canaan Methodist Cemetery.
Emmons Township has long been known for its mines, Emmons, Cid, Silver Valley. Cid which was
established in 1885, was a settlement that had been named for the superintendent of the mine, Sidney Muffley.
Northwest of Cid is the community of Silver Valley, lying on both sides of old Highway 64 and
state Highway 109. This settlement was first called William Cross Roads because it was located at the intersection of the
old stagecoach road and the Fisher Ferry Road.
These communities grew
in times, so many families came from these beginnings.