Tag: History

  1. Trailside Talk: Reports from the Rangers

    Trailside Talk: Reports from the Rangers Ranger giving information at kiosk. Photo courtesy of GSMNP archives. By Mike Hembree How much has Great Smoky Mountains National Park changed over the past half-century? A lot. And not much at all. The trees are bigger. The streams are wider and deeper. River rocks grow a tiny bit smoother with each passing storm. Parts Read more...
  2. Mountain Time: “The Green Tunnel” Through the Smokies

    Mountain Time: “The Green Tunnel” Through the Smokies By Arthur “Butch” McDade The Appalachian Trail (AT) is an iconic American long-distance path. In Great Smoky Mountains National Park, it runs over 70 miles along the park’s high ridges and gaps, including Clingmans Dome, the highest point on the AT. For many hikers, it’s the premier trail in the park. And while the Read more...
  3. Trailside Talk: A Last Ride With Dad

    Trailside Talk: A Last Ride With Dad Story by Mike Hembree In his later years, my father showed considerable interest in things of his past: his service in World War II, the first car he owned (a Chevrolet, of course), and the cattle he raised, largely as a hobby. For most of his 87 years, he talked little of the past, particularly avoiding the war years. Like many of his Read more...
  4. Anne Davis: Mother of the Park

    Anne Davis: Mother of the Park

    Anyone who has studied the history surrounding Great Smoky Mountains National Park likely knows the monumental effort it took to establish the park, and the many individuals whose voices and actions made it all possible. Perhaps one of the most important—and oft overlooked—founders of GSMNP is Anne Davis, who has been credited as the first to suggest establishing a national park in the Smokies.

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  5. Sepia Tones, A New Podcast Series Exploring Black Appalachian Music

    Sepia Tones, A New Podcast Series Exploring Black Appalachian Music by Ted Olson The lockdown summer of 2020 was a difficult time in the United States. The coronavirus pandemic surged, contentious election campaigns exacerbated growing political divisions, and protests of police killings brought about a national reckoning over entrenched racial and socioeconomic inequalities. While the first two issues Read more...
  6. Mountain Time: Harvey Broome

    Mountain Time: Harvey Broome By Arthur “Butch” McDade In his Out Under the Sky of the Great Smokies—A Personal Journal, Harvey Broome wrote: “I have never wanted to leave the top of a mountain.” That sentiment permeated his productive life as a lawyer, hiker, conservationist, and co-founder of The Wilderness Society. A guiding principle in Read more...
  7. Mountain Time: John Muir’s Lonely Way 

    Mountain Time: John Muir’s Lonely Way  By Arthur “Butch” McDade Renowned conservationist John Muir never set foot in the highlands that became Great Smoky Mountains National Park, but he made an epic trek through the Unicoi Mountains south of the Smokies in 1867, and he visited the highlands of Roan Mountain along the TN/NC border in 1898. So, he’d seen the Read more...
  8. National Park Week: Transformation Tuesday

    National Park Week: Transformation Tuesday By Sarah Shiver When you think about the transformations Great Smoky Mountains National Park has undergone, what comes to mind? Chances are you imagine the park’s creation—how it has changed from an area once populated by various communities to a swath of protected land that has largely been reclaimed by nature. But the park’ Read more...
  9. National Park Week: Military Monday

    National Park Week: Military Monday By Mike Hembree April 17-25 is National Park Week in the Smokies—and in every other national park. It’s time to celebrate spring, to break out hiking shoes and binoculars, to return to park roads and trails that many have missed for much of the past year. Activities are scheduled throughout the park system with the focus on how Read more...
  10. Remarkable Women of the Smokies

    Remarkable Women of the Smokies By Sarah Shiver Many inspiring and influential women have ties to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Some lived and died in the Smokies before the park was established, while others advocated for the park’s creation or drew artistic inspiration from it. In honor of Women’s History Month, here is a look at three women of the smokies Read more...

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