Preston J. Roberts

A Little of My Story…

I was born in 1957 and was raised in the once small town of Brevard, North Carolina. Pisgah National Forest was my early tromping ground, and I still frequent those familiar haunts. In 1975, I met the woman of my dreams, Kathleen DuPont McGuire, and wasted no time in marrying her. While many people use the old adage "behind every good man is a good woman," I am found saying "beside every good man is a good woman," and that she is. Together we raised 3 fine boys, and will be celebrating our 40th wedding anniversary in 2015.

Kathleen and I have lived in a small log cabin on the banks of the East Fork River, and on a research station located in the middle of virgin prairie in eastern North Dakota. We lived in a remodeled barn while I attended Atlantic Christian College, and in a tipi (with 2 kids) while finishing up my degree in Art Education at Appalachian State University. For over 30 years, we have lived in an old church located near Stone Mountain State Park in North Carolina. We also have 90 acres adjoining Turtle Island.

I met Eustace Conway in 1982 while they we finishing up our formal education and became steadfast friends. Eustace is the subject of Liz Gilbert's book, "The Last American Man." Together we have ridden horses across North and South Carolina and my middle son, Joseph, joined us on my world record-setting buggy trip. We crossed Montana, Wyoming, and Nebraska on the last leg of our journey. I helped Eustace with the creation of Turtle Island Preserve, the programs offered there, and I currently sit on its Board of Directors.

I taught in the Wilkes County School System for 25 years and was elected "Teacher of the Year" twice by my peers. I have been an instructor at numerous primitive skills gatherings and cultural events all over the United States. I have independently studied with the Native American people, becoming a singer and a contemporary traditional dancer. The core of my world has always revolved around the traditional Appalachian Mountain people and I have had the honor of being taught by some of the best.

Currently, I live in Wilkes County with Kathleen and together we grow a big organic garden and keep a few horses and chickens. I still work at Turtle Island, I make knives, hunt, fish, and from time-to-time, I make a little television (MOUNTAIN MEN on the History Channel).

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