Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Topics: Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Great Smoky Mountains, Sevier County, Tennessee Pages: 2 (550 words) Published: October 25, 2011
Gatlinburg, Tennessee is a great place for vacation. I have visited there several times . While visiting there I learned alot. Although, there is quite a bit of information I still had to learn and I would like to share that information with you today. Gatlinburg is a mountain resort city in Sevier county, Tennessee, United States. The city is a popular vacation resort, as it rests on the border of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park along U.S. Highway 441, which connects Gatlinburg to Cherokee, North Carolina through the national park. Many people call Gatlinburg “The Gateway to the Great Smoky Mountains.”

Extensive logging in the early 1900s led to increased calls by conservationists for federal action, and in 1911 congress passed the Weeks Act to allow for the purchase of land for national forests. Authors such as Horace Kephart and Knoxville-area business interests began advocating the creation of the national park in the Smokies, similar to Yellowstone National Park. With the purchase of 76,000 acres of the Little River Lumber Company tract in 1926, the movement quickly became a reality. Andrew Huff opened the first hotel in Gatlinburg called the Mountain View Hotel in 1916 and by 1934 the Great Smoky Mountains National Park was opened.

On the night of July 14,1992, Gatlinburg gained national attention when an entire city block burned to the ground, due to faulty wiring in a light fixture. The Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum was consumed by the fire, along with an arcade, haunted house, and souvenir shop. The blaze was fortunately stopped before it could consume the adjacent 32-story Gatlinburg Space Needle. The block, known to the locals as “Rebel Corner”, was completely rebuilt and reopened to visitors in 1995. Few artifacts from the Ripley’s Museum were salvaged. Ripley’s has caught fire twice since its reopening, once in 2000, and again in 2003. Both of those fires were caused by faulty light fixtures as well. The 2000 fire caused no damage...
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