View Full Version : Miss Janet need your help

steve hiker
2003-07-08, 20:53
Some of you know Miss Janet, who runs a hostel for A.T. thru-hikers in Erwin, TN. She's in trouble with local officials because of some unfounded accusations by another hostel owner in Erwin. Here are the basics:

A few weeks ago John Shores, the owner of "Uncle Johnny's" Nolichucky Hostel in Erwin, attended a County Commissioners meeting where he called for the committee to do what ever they could to shut Miss Janet down. He told them that she was running an illegal shuttle business and not paying taxes. The minutes to this meeting are public record. This seems to have prompted an "undercover investigation" where an officer called pretending to be a hiker and asked Miss Janet for a shuttle to the outfitters. The "hiker" did not want to wait until her group of guests wanted to go and insisted she give him a price to take just him. Miss Janet told him she would have to charge him $20...the standard $1 per mile that dozens of shuttle drives charge all up the trail.

She was written a traffic ticket for running a shuttle business without a shuttle license... but there is no such thing in Tennessee as an official shuttle license. When Miss Janet went to court to find out what she could do to comply with what ever law it was that she had broken ... she was informed that it was being turned over to criminal court and that a citation would be reissued as a warrant. The judge still would not clarify what law she allegedly had broken.

So, she has been waiting for 2 weeks to be arrested for....SOMETHING shuttle related. She has every single business license that she was told was required, and pays city, county and Tennessee State Sales taxes. She has commercial insurance for both the house and van... There seems to be no existing law that she has broken, but was told by one of the gov't "investigators" that her children could be taken because she "allows strangers/hikers to stay here where your children live..."

Miss Janet needs an attorney, so if anyone knows a lawyer who could help, please contact her.

The guy who started this crap, John Shores is notorious for being a troublemaker. He apparently has often made crude remarks about Miss Janet and her business and has caused confrontations in which the sheriff had to be called.

Anyone who would like to help, may call Miss Janet at 423-743-1932 or write her at themissjanet@yahoo.com.

Also, I'd like to see everyone boycott John Shores and his Nolichucky Hostel. We don't need people like that in the A.T. community.

2003-07-09, 17:53
I wonder if this is the same place where I got poisoned back in '96 or '97. I hiked from Spivey Gap (US 19W) north(ish) to Erwin, crossed the bridge and the railroad tracks, and instead of hiking three miles further on to the (free) shelter at Curley Maple Gap, I paid $10 for a campsite. (I was green and foolish back then.) After I set up my tent and bedded down for the night, the ass who owned the place apparently started a trash fire right upwind of my tent. As if that wasn't bad enough, this Rhodes Scholar apparently tossed some carpet on the fire (I saw the scorched remains the next morning).

The next day I slept in a bit, hiked the three miles to the shelter, stopped to get out of the rain, and started to get a headache that got worse and worse. I ended up wrapped into a fetal ball in the shelter all day and all night long, trying to sleep but waking up every 30 minutes with chills and sweats. The next morning I was well enough to make it back to Erwin, where I hitched a ride back to my car from a Beech Nut-chewing Pentecostal preacher.

I was planning to hike 5 days that week. Made it a day and a half, maybe 17 miles total. Worst hike of my life!

Anyway, if that was the same guy, he's an ass. (Even if it wasn't the same guy, they both sound like asses.)

2003-07-10, 00:02
sounds like you were at nolichucky gorge campground, so not the same guy. uncle johnny's hostel is before you cross the bridge (if northbound on the AT).

i stopped there for a break (uncle johnny's) in 2000 and didn't have a problem with the guy. of course i wasn't there long as my partner and i got a room at holiday inn. i also met miss janet and got a ride (paid) back to the trail at elk park. nice lady!

personally, i don't know who's the ass. i just know there has been an ongoing feud between janet and johnny (perpetuated by a few notable hikers). they are both in business, providing for hikers and i've happily paid them both for services. think i'll bypass erwin next time.

2003-07-10, 00:03
If you crossed the bridge then you were at Nolichucky campground. That guy is apparently gone now.

2003-07-10, 13:47
Hmm. OK, so it wasn't Uncle Johnny. Still glad to hear the other one is gone, though.

Either way, I learned three important lessons. First, burning carpet is bad for you. Second, always carry Vitamin I (a/k/a Ranger candy). Third, and probably most important, never pay for camping when you can camp cheap as free!!

steve hiker
2003-07-11, 20:26
Here's an update from Miss Janet posted on the TrailForums site today. If any of you have heard of John Shores giving slanderous information about Miss Janet's Hostel, please send it to her immediately!!!


Yes, things have gotten difficult around here because of U J's desire to see me shut down. I will have a little more information after I talk to my attorney this afternoon. Right now it looks like they are having trouble deciding what to charge me with. My lawyer can't find any law that I have broken so we don't know what to do yet. But because the police made other comments about the Department of Human Services and Children's Services taking my children away.... well, I am having to get serious.

The first thing I need are WRITTEN STATEMENTS from hikers that have had a problem or conversation with John Shores aka Uncle Johnny in the past six months, that in any way concerned me or the mention of my name or business in ANY negative or slanderous way. THIS IS CRUCIAL to getting a restraining order against him and some legal protection from him. They need to include as much personal information as a judge may need in order to contact them as well as the date that the incident occurred and if they had any witnesses.

The other thing I need are some general support letters... character reference kinds of things about Erwin, Miss Janet's House, myself, my children and in your opinion, how it all seemed to work during your visit. It is very important that you explain if you felt that my children were in any danger or if you found the situation in any way "bad" for them.

It is important that I make people that are not familiar with long distance hiking; understand what we are doing here and why it is important to hikers and to the Town of Erwin. I need them to understand that the shuttle services like I provide are especially important to your hike and that you were not charged a separate fee for your shuttle rides while here in Erwin. Include as much information as you can about WHO you are are, WHERE you are from, WHAT you do. It is important that non AT people understand that the hikers that stay with me are not not 'homeless" people. I really hate to bother anyone to ask them to write letters but it is so important! If you can write a letter and send it to me, the letter will be duplicated and given to several public officials, etc. I really hope I can get 20 or 30 letters ASAP. Please feel free to pass this on to anyone you think might be interested. THANK YOU!!!

Miss Janet

MIss Janet's House 220 North Elm Ave http://www.geocities.com/missjanetshouse Erwin, Tn 37650

Full Service Hiker Bunk and Breakfast (423)743-1932 home/leave message