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The Cades Cove Story – By A. Randolph Shields

Before the creation of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cades Cove was home to hundreds of settlers. This book explores the settlement of and development of community within Cades Cove through photographs, newspaper reports, census records and stories from people who lived there. The Cades Cove Story provides readers with a history of the cove and a greater understanding of mountain culture.

Published in 1977 by Great Smoky Mountains Association


House picture Picture of woman with baby Tripton family photo

“The earliest pioneers must have been a heterogeneous group, with many different motivations driving them westward. But as the more restless ones moved on, those who remained in Cades Cove became more cohesive, bound by a common manner of life.”


A. Randolph Shields

A. Randolph Shields was born in Cades Cove on April 8, 1913, and lived there until age 13. He graduated from Maryville College, then went to earn master of science and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Tennessee. He worked as an elementary school teacher, an aquatic and fisheries biologist, an associate professor of Biology at Emory and Henry College and Roanoke College, an instructor in botany at the University of Tennessee, and as a professor and chairman of the Department of Biology at Maryville College in Maryville, Tennessee. He also served as director of the Maryville College Environmental Education Center. He served six summers as a ranger-naturalist in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Shields was intimate with the Great Smokies as a national park and as the place where he was born and raised.