||"Some say that Watauga County's name comes from a word meaning "beautiful waters"; yet during the Civil War, events in this rugged western North Carolina region were far from beautiful. Hundreds of the county's sons left to fight gloriously for the Confederacy. This left the area open to hordes of plundering rogues from East Tennessee, including George W. Kirk's notorious band of thieves. While no large-scale battles took place there, Boone was the scene of the beginning of Stoneman's 1865 raid. The infamous Keith and Malinda Blalock called Watauga County home, leading escaped POWs and dissidents from Blowing Rock to Banner Elk. The four brutal years of conflict, followed by the more brutal Reconstruction, changed the county forever. Join Civil War historian Michael C. Hardy as he reveals Watauga County's Civil War sacrifices and heroism, both on and off the battlefield"-- Provided by publisher.