May. 22, 2015 @ 03:51 PM

Upland Chronicles: Clingmans Dome tower was designed for functionality

At 6,643 feet, Clingmans Dome is the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. It is the highest point in Tennessee, and the third highest mountain east of the Mississippi River. Only Mount Mitchell (6,684 feet) and Mount Craig (6,647 feet), both in Mount Mitchell Sate Park in western North Carolina, rise higher.

May. 17, 2015 @ 08:23 AM

With his musical sons, Del McCoury will play Dollywood’s Barbeque & Bluegrass Festival

Del McCoury is a master of the G run. Or, more formally, the Lester Flatt G run.

May. 15, 2015 @ 11:35 AM

Upland Chronicles: Blanche Moffett was known as the Lady of the Wishing Well

In the winter of 1933, Blanche Moffett stepped off the bus into an icy roadway in Gatlinburg. Refusing the idea of retirement, she had left behind both shelter and security. At the age of 62, surrounded by friends and family and comparative ease, Moffett had decided to move and embark on a new venture. Relying on her own initiative and courage, the feisty widow wanted to build a career that was of her own volition.

May. 14, 2015 @ 06:06 PM

Oom-papa-mow-mow with the Oak Ridge Boys

In March, storied singer Brenda Lee announced that the Oak Ridge Boys will be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame. At a ceremony in the fall, the quartet will join Hank Williams, the Carter Family, Dolly Parton and other Hall of Fame luminaries.

May. 09, 2015 @ 01:26 PM

Upland Chronicles: Decoration Day is an honored Sevier County custom

Decoration Day has been an important ritual in Sevier County for generations. Today, Southerners live in less rural areas, and Decoration Day customs are being conflated into the nationwide observance of Memorial Day. The long Memorial Day weekend provides the best opportunity to remember deceased family members and veterans, since a Decoration Day observed apart from this weekend is disappearing except perhaps in parts of our southern Appalachian Mountains.

May. 07, 2015 @ 06:20 PM

Gatlinburg's Pea Pickin' Hearts are a busy musical — and married — duo

Where do songwriters find inspiration? Rachel Gibson and Jon Ives, the married couple otherwise known as the Pea Pickin' Hearts, found theirs in Townsend.

May. 02, 2015 @ 05:23 PM

Upland Chronicles: Andrew Jackson magnolia tree has legendary past

In September 2013, during a ribbon cutting ceremony for the gazebo and green space surrounding the public parking area on Bruce Street, an announcement was made that a tree grown from a cutting off of the majestic White House magnolia tree planted by President Andrew Jackson would be transplanted to the green space.

Apr. 24, 2015 @ 06:24 PM

Northview freshman takes top honor at Sevier County’s Got Talent

The first of a planned series of annual competitions for local high school students — Sevier County’s Got Talent — went off Thursday night without a hitch.

Apr. 24, 2015 @ 06:08 PM

Upland Chronicles: Sevierville native Pack ran for governor in 1974

In 1974, Ray Blanton won a 12-person Democratic primary for governor. With just 23 percent of the vote, he defeated several well-financed opponents, including flamboyant banker Jake Butcher, former Sen. Ross Bass and Nashville news anchor Hudley Crockett. In the general election, Blanton defeated Lamar Alexander, 576,833 to 455,467.

Apr. 18, 2015 @ 02:54 PM

Photos: Outside the Rod Run

The Pigeon Forge Spring Rod Run concluded Saturday in the LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge, but uninitiated observers may have thought it was a citywide event. Some of the liveliest ancillary activity took place along the Parkway, where droves of car enthusiasts parked their souped-up vehicles. Here are some scenes from outside Spring Rod Run 2015.

Apr. 17, 2015 @ 01:58 PM

Upland Chronicles: Smoky Mountain Queen sailed to New Orleans

Carrying the message "Happy Birthday America," a flatboat, the Smoky Mountain Queen, docked at Poydras Street Wharf in New Orleans on Saturday May 29, 1976, after a 1,600-mile trip along the rivers of mid-America.

Apr. 17, 2015 @ 01:23 PM

Off to the races with the Smoky Mountain Gourmet

I split my time growing up between Washington, D.C., and Louisville, Ky., with most summers spent here. I like to think my persona combines the best of all three places, and that the resulting combination – part big city, part medium-sized city, part
mountains – gives me a perspective that adapts to almost any conceivable environment.

Apr. 17, 2015 @ 06:49 AM

Wildflower Pilgrimage offers guided tours of spring splendor

Many visitors to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park don't wander far from their cars.

Apr. 13, 2015 @ 10:48 AM

Upland Chronicles: Stokely Canning was county’s leading industry

In 1917, Dixie Canning Company built two factories in Sevier County. One was on Prince Street in Sevierville, and one was in Pigeon Forge. Farmers who signed contracts with the company were given seeds for beans, berries, pumpkins, apples and tomatoes.

Apr. 11, 2015 @ 03:27 PM

Gatlinburg native Dani Bryant creates play for Chicago youth

“You can be a drama kid in high school,” Dani Bryant said, “but actually making a career of it is hard to do.”

Apr. 09, 2015 @ 05:56 PM

Colossal rug reflects Arrowmont artist’s playful sensibility

Pictures don’t quite do it justice. To truly grasp its size, you’ll have to have a look for yourself at “Smaller Than Some, Larger Than Most, Maybe Not the World’s Largest Rag Rug.”

Apr. 04, 2015 @ 02:58 PM

Upland Chronicles: Dr. Thomas earned respect of mountain folk

Dr. Robert F. Thomas came to Pittman Center in 1926 to serve in the dual role of minister and physician. Although he was an outsider, Dr. Thomas quickly earned the respect of the people whose bodies and souls he cared for. He labored long to build churches and improve the health facilities in the rugged mountains.

Mar. 28, 2015 @ 04:03 PM

With a regional win, eighth grader heads to the National Spelling Bee

Caitlyn Marentette recalls her introduction to the world of competitive spelling. “It goes back to third grade,” she said.

Mar. 28, 2015 @ 11:45 AM

Upland Chronicles: Paul Adams established first camp at Mount LeConte

In 1926, Jack Huff was appointed camp caretaker and built a 20-by-24-foot cabin out of balsam logs that was the forerunner of LeConte Lodge. Huff and his wife Pauline operated the lodge until 1959. A year earlier, Paul Adams established a primitive camp atop the majestic mountain, setting the stage for the iconic hostelry.

Mar. 26, 2015 @ 03:23 PM

With 'Putnam County,' Walters State Sevier County presents its stage debut

Can you spell milestone? Walters State Community College passes one this weekend as the Sevier County campus stages its first full-length theatrical production, "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee."

Mar. 21, 2015 @ 04:31 PM

Upland Chronicles: Fred Rawlings launched Sevier County Public Library

On June 21, 1889, a reporter for the Sevier County Republican wrote an article titled "Things Sevierville Needs." The third thing on the list read as follows: "Sevierville needs a public reading room or library, if the young men are to be kept out of idleness and mischief, and if they are to be prepared for useful, honorable lives in the future." However, it wasn't until 1920 that a Sevierville library became a reality.

Mar. 14, 2015 @ 04:39 PM

Upland Chronicles: Early history of Forks-of-the-River Cemetery sketchy

Near the end of 1785, Rev. Richard Wood moved to the forks of the Little Pigeon River, where he established the Forks-of-the-Little-Pigeon Baptist Church in 1789. It was the first church in community that was later named Sevierville. Wood was born in Virginia, served as a soldier in the Revolutionary War, and first settled in the Providence community.

Mar. 07, 2015 @ 05:24 PM

New book tells history of Great Smoky Mountains' Elkmont area

Daniel L. Paulin researched his new book, "Images of America: Lost Elkmont," for years. In fact, he researched it before he knew it was going to be a book.

Mar. 07, 2015 @ 01:07 PM

Upland Chronicles: Peregrine falcons returned home to Duck Hawk Peaks

Near the Alum Cave Bluff on the south side of majestic Mount LeConte is the thin leaning ridge with jagged points known as Duck Hawk Peaks. There's Little Duck Hawk Ridge paralleled by Big Duck Hawk Ridge. Peregrine Peak is the old name for the large mountain where the Alum Cave and Duck Hawk areas are located. Early settlers began calling the area by these names after observing the fast-flying birds nesting there.

Mar. 03, 2015 @ 11:00 AM

Upland Chronicles: Gov. John Sevier was a controversial figure

Gov. John Sevier, the man for whom Sevier County and Sevierville were named, died 200 years ago this year. His demise came suddenly on Sept. 24, 1815, in the Alabama territory, where he was on a congressional mission conducting a survey of lands in the Creek Indian country. He was 70.