5. McCaysville, Copperhill and Ducktown are all part of the Copper Basin. Copper was discovered in 1843 and mined in the basin until the late 1980's. Smelting took place at the company in Copperhill. Open smelting and close cutting of timber for fueling, together with harmful gases released, denuded the hills around Copperhill, making the area resemble a moonscape. In 1939, TVA and the Tennessee Copper Company began a long term reforesting project which helped restore the area.
To see mining pictures and artifacts, visit the Chamber Welcome Center, 53 East Market Street, in McCaysville. For an even better experience, visit a real copper mine at the Burra Burra Mine and Ducktown Basin Museum on Highway 68 in Ducktown.