I have been hand drawing maps since I was a kid growing up in the 1950s in Norfolk, Virginia. Fascinated

by reading Treasure Island, pirate treasure maps, lost islands, etc. I started early-on, as a young boy,

drawing aerial view maps where you can see the lay of the land, mountains, rivers, oceans, ships,

buildings, houses, wagons, animals, trees and people. After retiring to Hatteras, North Carolina, I began

putting my fascination with maps on paper. Moving to the mountains of Western North Carolina and

exploring the small mountain towns has expanded my love of map making and research into the place

names and family histories of this beautiful region.

The gift of perception is something I have always had and has inspired me to do maps of the Outer Banks

of coastal North Carolina through the Blue Ridge Mountains. Prints of my maps are sold in US Park

Service shops throughout North Carolina.

Some of my favorite maps encompass the southern terminus of the Appalachian Trail (AT) starting in

Springer Mountain, through Standing Indian in Georgia and into the Smoky Mountain National Park in

North Carolina.

My second mountain themed map is of Western North Carolina, from Franklin in the southwest,

Cherokee in the northwest to Mount Mitchell in the northeast and Saluda in the southeast. Some of the

towns included in this map are Asheville, Hendersonville and Black Mountain. This map continues to

follow the AT from Standing Indian to where it trails off into Tennessee at Bald Mountain

My third and newest map picks up the Appalachian Trail at Bald Mountain and crosses into Tennessee.

You can follow the trail over Roan Mountain, around Watauga Lake and onward through Damascus,

Virginia. Towns in North Carolina include Black Mountain, Spruce Pine, Blowing Rock, Boone, Banner Elk

and many, many more. Johnson City and Elizabethton, Tennessee are also pictured.

All my maps are individually hand signed 16”X20” prints of my original work. I do not use any computer

program or enhancement to create my watercolor, pen and ink originals. Maps are 16” X 20” in size.

Jim Mitchem

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