For this, great thanks go to Qualla Arts & Crafts Mutual, Inc., the nation's oldest and foremost Native American cooperative. With the 1940 opening of neighboring Great Smoky Mountains National Park and the postwar growth of highways and family travel, the outside world came to Cherokee as never before. At this point, modern distractions and mass-produced goods might have swept away tribal traditions. Instead, visionary Cherokee craftspeople and leaders saw that Cherokee crafts _ if preserved and promoted _ could strengthen tribal values and provide livelihoods while offering unique beauty to the wider world.
Since 1946, Qualla has truly realized this... (more)