Maggie’s Story

Maggie Mae Setzer Pylant, for whom Maggie Valley is named, was born December 21,st 1890 in a small log cabin that still stands in altered form at the foot of Setzer Mountain.

In the early 1900s, Maggie’s father, Jon Sidney Setzer better known as “Uncle Jack”, grew tired of riding his horse several times down the mountain to the old Plott Post Office to get the mail for residents of the valley and decided to do something about it. He wrote U.S. Postmaster General Frank Hitchcock in Washington D.C., asking for permission to operate a post office in his home. He was told he had to prove the need for one; and so, for a period of several months, Uncle Jack kept records of the mail that passed through his hands, the amount of stamps, postal cards (which at the time cost 1cent each), etc.

He then applied again and obtained permission to operate a post office in his home. Thereupon Setzer submitted four names, one for the creek running by his home (Jonathan), and one for each of his three daughters: Cora, Mettie and Maggie. Maggie was Washington’s choice, and thus the Maggie Post office opened May 10, 1904.

Maggie helped run the Post office in the Setzer home while her father delivered the mail until 1907, when she married Ira M. Pylant and left her valley. The young family moved to Tennessee, then California and finally Texas, where Maggie died in 1979, at the age of 88.