Edneyville, North Carolina: Pose with the Original Carolina Hillbilly (Gone)

Bearded, shirtless Sam was "The Original Carolina Hillbilly," and his hand-painted sign pointed to where you would find him if you wanted a friendly photo op.


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Pose with the Original Carolina Hillbilly

While trying to find out if we could stop for a photo with hillbilly Sam on our way, I found his obituary in the Fairview Town Crier. An extract: Samuel Filmore Freeman died on January 24 at his home in Gerton. Folks knew him as Sonny, the name he preferred. His rustic cabin sits right next to 74A (Gerton Highway). Passersby waved and he waved back. In more recent times -- with the addition of a large sign inviting people to Stop and Meet Sam, the Original Hillbilly -- many people pulled over to chat.

[Philippa Moore, 10/25/2021]
Pose with the Original Carolina Hillbilly

The sign to Pose with the Hillbilly is no more, but Sam is still there to take photos with. His wife Ellen has passed, but Sam will gladly show you pictures of him and Ellen from their wedding day. Sam is getting up there in years, but he still very much enjoys talking to visitors. Have a stop if you are passing through!

[Chris, 12/12/2019]


Pose with the Original Carolina Hillbilly

This was awesome! Sam and his wife Ellen are super friendly. They live in the house his grandpa built over 130 years ago and give great advice about what you'll get if you visit Chimney Rock...make sure to ask.

If your significant other is bald, you'd better watch out, because Ellen has a thing for bald men after watching Kojack.

[Angela Johnson, 08/04/2014]

Original Carolina Hillbilly.

Original Carolina Hillbilly

Carolina Hillbilly lived here all his life.

[Randy, 12/23/2012]

He seems to be all-season shirtless, for your local color convenience!

Pose with a Carolina Hillbilly.

Original Carolina Hillbilly

On the side of the road there is a sign for "The Original Carolina Hillbilly, pictures OK". If you stop, a guy named Sam will come out and take pictures with you. He is the real deal. He's just a good old country boy who doesn't like to wear shirts. He enjoys dippin' tobacco and he has a long mountain beard.

[Joseph K, 12/14/2012]

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