separates the Great Smoky Mountains National Park from
the national parks in the west is the anthropological history of human
Before the park was chartered in 1926, the
region was populated with farmers, merchants, and mining and timber operators.
Towns replete with schools, churches, and shops dotted the landscape.
Most of these villages were razed, with only
a few historic structures remaining to be maintained as a living museum of the
way life used to be prior to the establishment of the park.
These monuments serve as a direct connection to the
past. It is impossible to
reconcile the natural beauty of the surroundings and the shadows of those that
lived, worked, and died here without some semblance of a spiritual awakening.
And a deep realization that we all play a small
role in the epoch of