News

  1. The Road that Led Around the World

    Newfound Gap Road

    By Mike Aday

    What do Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Ethiopia, Panama and Alaska have in common? They can all boast major roads built by one man, Knoxville native John L. Humbard. Well, technically, a lot of men were involved, but Humbard supervised them all.

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  2. Little Sluice of Heaven: A tiny sliver of the A.T.

    Rhodo Tunnel Chestnut Branch

    By Lisa Duff

    Memorial Day Monday found me with a mild case of cabin fever, which was a bit strange since CF is typically a wintertime ailment. What happened was this: I’d successfully managed to add a few at-home days to the end of my vacation to allow for ease of real-world re-entry, and Monday, as it turned out, was one day too many.

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  3. The Strange Case of Cades Lake

    Cades Map

    Depending on who you were and what you stood for, the idea of turning most of Cades Cove into a 50-foot-deep lake—three miles long and two miles wide—was either brilliant or terrible.

    Pro-lake constituents included National Park Service Director Arno B. Cammerer (immortalized by the naming of Mt. Cammerer), Tennessee Governor Gordon Browning, the Great Smoky Mountains Conservation Association, park booster Col. David Chapman, and Knoxville City Manager George Dempster.

    Those opposed included acting and former NPS Directors Stephen Mather and Horace Albright, Robert Sterling Yard of the National Parks Association, and stalwart conservationists Harvey Broome Benton MacKaye.

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  4. GSMA set to release its fourth album of traditional American music

    Big Bend Killing

    Big Bend Killing: The Appalachian Ballad Tradition celebrates Appalachia’s rich legacy of songs that tell stories, a tradition traceable to the British Isles. Big Bend Killing features 32 new recordings of traditional ballads by leading UK- and American-roots music luminaries, including Rosanne Cash, Doyle Lawson, Archie Fisher, Alice Gerrard, Sheila Kay Adams, Martin Simpson, Jody Stecher, Kate Brislin, David Holt, John Lilly, Elizabeth LaPrelle, Amythyst Kiah, and Laura Boosinger with the Kruger Brothers.

    “This album offers 32 remarkable ballad performances, 31 of which have never been released,” said Ted Olson, professor of Appalachian Studies and Bluegrass, Old-Time, and Country Music Studies at East Tennessee State University and the album’s producer. “Our goal with this album is to encourage people – young and old – to recognize the enduring beauty of these often overlooked narrative songs, and our hope is that more people will sing these and other ballads so that the tradition won’t fade away."

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  5. Lichens of the Smokies Revealed at Science at Sugarlands

    Lichens of the Smokies Revealed at Science at Sugarlands

    James Lendemer loves lichens. He loves talking about them, showing pictures of them, and telling others what lichens are and how they are important.

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  6. Species-a-Day Calendar puts park biodiversity at people’s fingertips

    Species-a-Day Calendar puts park biodiversity at people’s fingertips

    A new Species-a-Day perpetual flip calendar available now in Great Smoky Mountains National Park visitor centers allows park enthusiasts to learn more about a place renowned for its diversity of plant and animal life on each day of this and all years to come.

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  7. Park Superintendent Recognizes First African American Naturalist

    Park Superintendent Recognizes First African American Naturalist

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park Superintendent Cassius Cash on Thursday, August 29,had the unique opportunity to meet and recognize Dr. Joe Lee of Jupiter, FL, for his service as the first African American park naturalist. Superintendent Cash presented Dr. Lee with a mounted ranger hat in honor of his contribution to the history of the National Park Service.

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  8. My first backpacking trip will not be my last

    My first backpacking trip will not be my last

    By Logan Boldon

    Member Events Specialist

    When I think of the ultimate backpacker, Samwise Gamgee from J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings series immediately comes to mind. This stout little hobbit who’d never left the Shire made it all the way to Mordor toting a simple rucksack. With pots and pans clanging, Sam climbed over mountains and waded through swamps, camping out along the way with enough fortitude to give lectures on the goodness of potatoes and contemplate the taste of strawberries as the world turned to chaos over a silly little ring. Who can compete with that? Certainly not me.

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  9. Science at Sugarlands: Post-fire Plant-Soil Interactions

    Science at Sugarlands: Post-fire Plant-Soil Interactions

    By Frances Figart, creative services director

    Soil is the foundation of our planet. We walk on top of it every day, yet most of us rarely think about it.

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  10. Upcoming Winter Park Closures Due to Roadwork

    Upcoming Winter Park Closures Due to Roadwork

    Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials announced that the main access roads into Cades Cove and Cataloochee will be closed for several months this winter for road construction projects.

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