The Burial Ground
(refer to pages 22, 23, & 48 in On the Trail of the Last of the Mohicans)
A wooded knoll on the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, Buncombe County
I was told, by Estate personnel, that the Burial Ground, or glade, was about a quarter mile from the entrance gate, but I was told no more. I looked all over the area finding all sorts of places that looked like they might fit the bill, or maybe where we see the Ottawa war party approach and then depart. I actually bought a season’s pass to the Estate for the 1993 visitor year just to find the Burial Ground.
On one visit, I parked the car right where the present Welcome Center now stands ... it wasn’t there back then. Just behind this new facility is a knoll. I dashed up there, remarkably not being seen by the usually diligent security force, and was free to roam about in the forest up there. At my leisure, it wasn’t very hard. The grass was unmistakable. Had I known, I could have accessed this location via a back road, created by the film crew and dubbed "Mohican Road," but I did not then know of its existence.
It wasn’t until the 2000 Great Mohican Gathering, when we were led there by Estate personnel and locations manager, Michael Bigham, that I learned of this "road." At that time, Bigham explained to us how Michael Mann had low wooden platforms built over the unique grass so as not to disturb it before the actual film takes.
This was fun, and certainly enjoyable, but there’s something to be said for sneaking in and hiding out. I felt I had a lot in common with Hawkeye, and Chingachgook, and Hayward and the rest when they had visited this place last!
This portion of the Biltmore Estate is not part of the usual area open to visitation. You can see the wooded knoll from the Welcome Center, however you cannot view the actual location. I have found the Estate personnel to be most accommodating. If you’d really like to visit, ask them. You just might find yourself traveling down Mohican Road.