Modern Day Thoreau Targeted by North Carolina Bureaucrats

“I’m not confident I’ll win. I’m confident I ought to win” – so says Eustace Conway, about the situation into which he’s been thrust due to the threats of some who claim they’re just looking out for his own good.

Conway, who back in the late 80’s, bought a 107-acre property out in the sticks of western North Carolina seeking a lifestyle more in tune with nature, now faces the ire of Boone and Watauga County bureaucrats.

From Nate Cox, founder of Virginia Cop Block:

… his consistent/ persistent volunteers have never had any issues with the local government in the last 26 years he’s been residing out in the mountains of North Carolina – until of course, he got his own TV Show. As of this writing,  we are still questioning the motives behind the employees of the “Planning and Inspection Department” and “Health Department Safety Specialist” who’ve harassed him over a mandate that his doghouse and outhouse meet a series of absurd regulatory codes. Of course that’s not their only gripes with Eustace, he didn’t get permission from those wise-overlords in the county to construct the buildings on the land that he owns. Eustace didn’t bother to get an arbitrary piece of paper granting him permission to do what he wishes to do with his own property.  It was his property, he owns the property, and was not infringing on anyone else’s life, so why should he need a bureaucrat’s permission slip?

For a generation Conway had rightly been left alone to pursue his interests, during which time his property morphed into the 500-acre Turtle Island Preserve:

Turtle Island is located in a remote hidden valley at the end of a long gravel road. Our programs are full of lifestyle practices of earlier people from our great grandparent’s time and back into prehistory. We orient to the basic foundation of where things come from and where things go. We plant and harvest in our gardens, milk goats, make butter, soap, bowls, spoons and tools of all size and description. We hunt and gather wild foods and medicines and natural resources abounding in our huge natural preserve. We cook on a fire, gathering our own wood. We completely made the many buildings of our farmstead; carved literally from the wilderness.

As Cox notes in his video below, the recent attention and pressure levied at Conway could be due to the fact that area bureaucrats want to see his land developed to help fill their coffers.

Conway says he’ll make a stand on his principle. Good for him. It’ll only empower others to do the same.

Both Conway and Cox were interviewed on the March 19th, 2013 episode of Free Talk Live (starts about 15min in):

Become more familiar with Conway’s situation and if you’re so-inclined, I encourage you to call those individuals currently levying threats at him:

Watauga County Health Department
126 Poplar Grove Connector
Boone, N.C. 28607

Watauga County Planning and Inspections
331 Queen Street, Suite A
Boone, NC 28607

Town of Boone
567 West King Street
Boone, NC 28607
p: 828.268.6200
f: 828.268.6208

Also, feel free to donate to help Conway’s efforts:

For an in-depth overview of Conway’s situation watch this video overview from Cox, and if you’re so-inclined, donated, get feet on the ground, share this or related content, or help in whatever other capacity you feel warranted.

One thing I did question in the video below, was why did Conway politely inform the news crew that was accompanying him, that their presence might be seen as “intimidating”? Even if that was the perceptive had by the bureaucrats who cares? Most-important is that Conway’s freedom isn’t usurped. Being along, behind a closed door, with a number of individuals who claim the right to regulate the use of your own property doesn’t strike me as a desirable situation.



Pete Eyre

Pete Eyre is co-founder of As an advocate of peaceful, consensual interactions, he seeks to inject a message of complete liberty and self-government into the conversation of police accountability. Eyre went to undergrad and grad school for law enforcement, then spent time in DC as an intern at the Cato Institute, a Koch Fellow at the Drug Policy Alliance, Directer of Campus Outreach at the Institute for Humane Studies, Crasher-in-Chief at Bureaucrash, and as a contractor for the Future of Freedom Foundation. In 2009 he left the belly of the beast and hit the road with Motorhome Diaries and later co-founded Liberty On Tour. He spent time in New Hampshire home, and was involved with Free Keene, the Free State Project and The Daily Decrypt.