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The Smoky Mountains have numerous peaks that are named after many people who had a great deal of influence on the creation of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. These people were very different but all shared a similar vision of how the future of this great landscape should be treated. Here are 5 influential people and the peaks in the Smoky Mountains that are dedicated to them:
1. Horace Kephart
Horace Kephart is known as an expert on Appalachian ways of life, as he spent years living amongst its people. His story is unique in that he felt unfulfilled with his life as a librarian and sought to live more freely, experiencing a life that involved writing about his newfound joy of the outdoors and learning how Appalachian people raised their families. His love of the mountains led him to become a fierce champion for the establishment of the National Park in his later years. Mt. Kephart lies on the North Carolina-Tennessee border and is the seventh highest mountain in Tennessee.
2. David C. Chapman
David C. Chapman was a hometown boy from nearby Knoxville whom many recognize his name being adorned on not only a peak in the Smoky Mountains, but on the frequently traveled Chapman Highway. He served in the military before becoming a politician and well-known businessman in East Tennessee. Chapman was heavily involved in negotiating land purchases in the park and eventually succeeded in getting John D. Rockefeller, Jr. to donate money to ensure that the Great Smoky Mountains National Park would become a reality. Mt. Chapman also sits on the border with North Carolina and has an elevation of 6,417 feet above sea level.
3. Arno B. Cammerer
Arno B. Cammerer was a Midwesterner who found himself in Washington D.C. after receiving his law degree. His work with the U.S. Park Service led him to having an important role in securing money to expand the creation of several national parks, including the Smoky Mountains. His tireless work would prove detrimental to his health, but his work as the third director of the park service would not go unnoticed. Mt. Cammerer is clearly visible if you’re looking south from Cosby, Tennessee and serves as a popular hiking destination.
4. Ann Davis
Many tourists are sure to appreciate the efforts of Ann Davis in the establishment of a National Park in the Smoky Mountains. She vacationed here with her husband in 1923 and asked why the eastern United States didn’t have a park for visitors to enjoy. While some historians question her influence, the story of her desire to have a national park here is well-documented.
5. Willis P. Davis
Ann Davis’ husband was a solid figure in the Knoxville business community, putting together a delegation that would prove vital in getting the Tennessee portion of the Smoky Mountains included in the National Park. His influence here made him a person of great importance in putting the wheels in motion for the government to make this a reality. Mount Davis is named after Willis P. Davis and is located near Townsend, Tennessee. Davis Ridge is named after his wife, Ann, and is located near Mount Davis between Silers Bald and Thunderhead Mountain.
Where to Stay
Now that you know the story and names behind some of the peaks in the Smoky Mountains and the people who had an influence on the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, plan a trip to visit the park! When you visit, stay in our beautiful cabin rentals that provide you with the comfort and amenities you need for an amazing vacation in the Smoky Mountains. You can relax in the hot tub while enjoying the mountain views, or gather around the outdoor fire pit and roast marshmallows! If you’re coming with a group, we have large cabins with fantastic amenities like game rooms and theater rooms that provide you with hours of entertainment. And that’s not all — when you stay in our cabin rentals, you’ll even get free tickets to popular attractions, so after you’re done visiting the National Park, you can explore all the other excitement in the area.
Browse all our Gatlinburg cabins and start planning a trip the the Great Smoky Mountains National Park for a chance to see some of these incredible peaks.