WILKESBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — Some stories get repeated often enough that they gain currency as being accurate when sometimes, they’re not.

For example, history books will tell you that Abraham Lincoln was born in Hodgenville, Kentucky, in 1809. But go up to Swain County in western North Carolina, and it’s “common knowledge” that Lincoln was fathered by a man named Abraham Enloe, who lived there, and that Lincoln was born in 1807.

Other stories are more contemporary, though. Like the one about how NASCAR was created in Daytona Beach, Florida, at the Streamline Hotel.

Few dispute that the last set of formal papers was signed there. But it started, as many will tell you, in Wilkesboro.

“Bill France, Sr. drove up here one day in a car to have a meeting with moonshiners…back then in 1947, the people with all money were the moonshiners,” said Terri Parsons, who has been around racing her whole life and grew up in Daytona before moving to Wilkes County after she married racing legend Benny Parsons.

“(France) left here with a trunk full of money that the moonshiners all gave him, and he went home and opened up Daytona International Speedway, and I can’t find anybody that can dispute that,” Parsons said.

Seth Cohn backs that up.

“It had to start somewhere, and it started here,” Cohn said, whose family has owned what was the Smithey Hotel on Main Street for about 30 years, which is where some say it all began.

Cohn said Nike Smithey, who owned the building at the time, was a businessman so well thought of that Harvard sent some of its faculty down to study his methods.

Cohn now runs both a health food store and Dooley’s Grill & Tavern on the first floor of the hotel.

“This is the birthplace of NASCAR in our eyes,” Cohn said. “We know it. We want the rest of the world to see how we see it. We are from here. We want everyone to realize what it means to be part of NASCAR and to be part of racing heritage.”

See the room where it all began and a photo of the men who were at that first meeting in this edition of The Buckley Report.