Horror in the highlands: Asheville’s ghostly legends provide a glimpse into city’s past

riverside-20-1100x733(Mountain XPress) The large crowd that packs the back room of West Asheville’s new Byrish Haus & Pub isn’t unusual for a Wednesday evening, but its purpose there might be a little strange, even for this town. “Tonight, we will be conducting an investigation and seance in a way that’s never been done in Asheville,” says Joshua P. Warren, Asheville native and nationally renowned paranormal investigator. Employing a host of electrostatic detectors and traditional instruments of the occult, Warren, forensic historian Vance Pollock and a host of paranormal investigators, “sensitives” and mediums are about to attempt to identify and draw out a spirit said to be plaguing the new bar. Like any good Southern city, Asheville’s history is steeped in the gothic and the paranormal. While the facts and claims behind these legends vary from story to story (and storyteller), Asheville’s “ghosts” play an often unheralded role in capturing and preserving the city’s past.

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13-Year-old Receives Google Science Prize for Ingenious Medical Solution

13-year-old-google-prize-winner-released(Good News Network) This 13-year-old just revolutionized an age-old problem in medicine using a remarkably simple method. Anushka Naiknaware from Beaverton, Oregon became one of the top eight finalists of an international Google-run science competition after she invented bandages that notify doctors when they needed to be changed. Using graphene nanoparticles and ink, the bandages start to display fractal patterns when they detect that moisture levels have dropped. Bandages need to be dampened in order to properly heal wounds, but changing bandages too often can be harmful to an injury. This way, medical officials no longer have to rely on guesswork.

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Where is the line between your property and theirs? Congressional hearing on houseboats raises questions

f3fab02f192640fc89b417b33948356c_xl(Smoky Mountain News)  The Tennessee Valley Authority leadership fielded some tough questions from members of Congress last week in Washington, D.C., during a Subcommittee on Government Operations hearing. There were some questions TVA wasn’t able to answer regarding its recent board decision to get rid of 1,800 houseboats on its 49 reservoirs within the next 30 years. Even though more than 3,700 people have signed an online petition opposing the TVA’s decision to sunset all floating homes, TVA President and CEO Bill Johnson couldn’t tell the committee how many complaints it received regarding houseboats staying on the lakes.

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-Cashiers, who also chairs the subcommittee, told Johnson that a decision to displace 1,800 families who invested thousands into their homes usually isn’t made lightly. After closely examining the legislation that created the TVA as a federal corporation in 1933, Meadows also said he thought the TVA was overstepping its authority and was punishing many homeowners when the TVA hasn’t enforced its own houseboat regulations since 1978.

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