Located in Flat Rock, near Hendersonville, (about 30 miles south of downtown Asheville), is the fascinating home of America's poet, Carl Sandburg. It was designated as a National Historic Site in 1968 to honor Carl Sandburg's compelling collection of stories about the American people; their plights, struggles, joys and hopes as told through Sandburg's poetry, prose, journalism and biography. It's free to explore the grounds, but there is small fee for a guided house tour. Nearby is Flat Rock Playhouse.
2016 Update: Carl Sandburg Home / Connemara Restoration
Throughout 2016 and 2017, most of the furnishings and 65,000 artifacts inside the Sandburg Home will be inventoried and packed away for major renovations. Windows in deteriorated condition will be repaired, the conservatory or greenhouse attached to the east side of the house will be rebuilt, walls will be painted, some of the wood floors will be refinished, and a dehumidification and air ventilation system will be installed. The park’s information center and bookstore in the ground floor of the Sandburg Home will remain open throughout the work. The upstairs will remain open for tours as much as possible during the next three years. The home will only close to tours for short periods when safety issues arise from the painting or installation work.
Tours will continue during the renovations, offered daily, except Christmas Day. Tours are limited to 15 visitors. Take a 1/3 mile trail up a hill to reach the house. If you are unable to walk, use the phone by the parking lot for assistance.
The highlight for many are the goats. Mrs. Sandburg owned and operated a premier goat dairy from 1935 to 1965. Mrs. Sandburg's goat breeding program produced champion goats and led to the improvement of goats as milk producing animals. The park service raises goats that represent the three breeds of goats Mrs. Sandburg raised at Connemara. Rangers and volunteers are on hand to share this facinating story about goats and Mrs. Sandburg's dairy goat operation.
Enjoy the solitude of Connemara. Hike its many trails and take from it the energy to avoid diversions. There are five miles of trails - various lengths and difficulties, including a trail to the top of Glassy Mountain.
Park Ranger programs are given throughout the summer months. In May, the Folk Music Festival presents music from Sandburg's The American Songbag.
Admission: Free for grounds, trails and barn; no park entrance fee.
Guided House Tour Fee: $5.00 for Adults 17 and older; $3.00 for seniors 62 and older (cash or check only); Children under 16 admitted free
Hours: Open daily 9 AM until 5 PM, except Christmas Day.
From Asheville: (40 minute drive from downtown) Take I-26 east to exit 53 - turn right onto Upward Road. From Upward Road and intersection with Rt. 176 (now U.S. 25) continue straight. Upward Road is now No. Highland Lake Road. At the light, turn left onto Rt.225/Greenville Hwy south. At next light take a right onto Little River Road. Visitor parking on left.