The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys: A Stephenson Center for Appalachia lecture

Celebrated journalist and historian Rob Christensen will present a program on his latest book The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys in the Shelton Learning Commons Room 205 on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at 7 p.m.

A highly respected political journalist for The News and Observer in Raleigh, Christensen has also appeared as a political analyst on more than 600 television and radio programs, including the CBS Evening News, Fox News, MSNBC, CNN, PBS, NPR, and BBC.

His recently published book is a multi-generational story about one of North Carolina’s most important political families—the Scott family. The book also covers the long struggle to build paved roads and establish electric and telephone power lines into Western North Carolina.

The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys has recently won the prestigious Ragan Old North State Award as the best work of nonfiction written in North Carolina during the past year. Christensen will have copies of the book for sale the evening of his lecture.

“We look forward to Rob Christensen’s visit to Lees-McRae and the chance to learn more about his important book,” Director of the Stephenson Center for Appalachia Dr. Michael Joslin said. “The rural improvements brought to our region by the Scotts have played an important role in opening access to mountain communities.”

Stephenson Center for Appalachia lectures are free and open to the public. For more information, email

The Rise and Fall of the Branchhead Boys

By Nina MastandreaFebruary 10, 2020
Campus LifeAcademicsCommunity