NCNR was organized in 1974 to stop construction of two dams on the New River that would have flooded 42,000 acres in North Carolina and southwestern Virginia. The proposed dams would have displaced at least 2,700 inhabitants, 893 dwellings, 42 summer cabins, 10 industrial establishments, 23 commercial facilities, five post offices, 15 churches, and 12 cemeteries. Because the proposed project had so little value compared to what would have been destroyed with local farmers losing their land and with damming the free-flowing New River, the fight to defeat the dams became a national fight.
NCNR was successful in 1976, when a 26.5-mile section of the River was designated a Federal Scenic River. After the dam proposal was defeated, NCNR operated as a volunteer organization to protect and preserve the New River. In 1991, NCNR reorganized and became a 501(c)(3) nonprofit membership organization. NCNR recognizes that the work to protect the New River is ongoing and multifaceted. We now have several program areas for protecting, preserving, and restoring this national treasure.
Our members are essential for the work we do. Please contact us to see how you can join the National Committee for the New River.