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Tom Dooley Day


This year’s annual Tom Dooley Event, Saturday, May 19th from 10 a.m.-5:00 p.m marks the  150th anniversary of Tom Dula’s hanging. Tom Dula, from “Hang Down your Head Tom Dooley” fame, lived in the village of Ferguson, N.C during the 1800’s until he was hanged for the murder of Laura Foster. Whippoorwill Academy and Village was begun by the late artist and historian, Edith Ferguson Carter. It is now owned and operated by her daughter, Margaret Carter Martine and her husband Dick Martine. The historic village has 12 + cabins and celebrates the talents and history of the area. Back in the 1700’s this area was also the home of Daniel Boone for many years and Whippoorwill Academy and Village celebrates the famed frontiersman the third Saturday in September.

NC 26th Regiment fireplace cooking demonstration out of classroom education

This year, the Tom Dooley Day event will have the following performers, authors and demonstrators:

  • The Rob McHale Band from Statesville,NC
  • Mary Bohlen- fireplace cooking
  • The Foothill Cloggers
  • Wicker and Jones musicians from Mocksville, NC
  • Acoustic Kin musicians from surrounding counties
  • Rick and Gary Coffey talking about their Civil War artifact collection (this will take place in the old Capt. Lindsay Ferguson home, located near the village. Capt. Ferguson was an officer in the home guard for the Confederacy.
  • Benjamin Barker, a 15 year old musician from Wilkes County
  • Dink Tharpe- Blacksmith demonstrating at the blacksmith shop
  • Mark Tharpe- old time wood working
  • RG Absher- performer of early American music
  • Blackberry Jam – music performed by children from surrounding counties
  • Art display by the students from The Lenoir School of Visual Arts
  • Authors: Charlotte Corbin Barnes, who will be showing a video of her interviews with older folks when she was researching her book The Tom Dooley File;, Gretchen Griffith who has written many many books; Renee Frost; Kendall Privette and signed books by the late Bob Powell.
  • Music by Chad Triplett from Lenoir, NC
  • Music by 11 year old Owen Combs from Wilkes County
  • Guitar making demonstrations by Mr. RW Watson
  • Kenny Klontz will be demonstrating loom weaving, Appalachian toys and also performing music
  • Magic show by Nelson Brookshire
  • Video on the story of Tom Dooley with art works by the late Edith Carter will be playing in the Tom Dooley Museum
  • A Dula genealogy tent set up by descendant, Diane West
  • Contests for children and adults will also be a part of the day.

There will be food and drinks available for purchase at the event.

Entry fee is $5.00 per person, children 5 and under are free. There is no cost for parking. Visitors are asked to bring their own chairs. This is a smoke free village. Pets are not permitted.

For more information, contact us through FB, our website: or call 336-973-3237

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Contact Information

Open the 3rd Saturday of the month from 1-5 PM: Other times by appointment only
11928 NC Hwy 268 W Ferguson,
NC 28624

Mailing Address:
PO Box 458 Ferguson,
NC 28624


Phone: (336) 973-3237


Photography : Courtesy of various photographers
All images are copyrighted to their respective owners.