David Hunter Strother. Virginia Illustrated:
Containing a Visit to the Virginian Canaan,
and the Adventures of Porte Crayon and His
Cousins. New York: Harper and Brothers,
1857. Barrett Library. Shown: "South Peak
of Otter, from the Hotel."
The Peaks of Otter has been an existing
community of people for more than 80 centuries. Cherokee Indians, European pioneers, their descendants, travelers, and tourists have used the area to hunt, camp, and to live on and farm the land. Near the end of the nineteenth century, at the site of the present Peaks of Otter Lodge, was the thriving community of Mons. There were at least 20 families in the community, a church, an elementary school, two mills, an Odd Fellows lodge, and the Hotel Mons. The history of the Johnson family is intertwined with the history of the Mons community and the Peaks of Otter.
They were tied to the development of the hotel and to the area’s tourism industry.